Image Credit: Gracie May Photography
Today we’d like to introduce you to Gabriela Maldonado.
Hi Gabriela, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
It all started in 2017 when a friend asked me to take pictures of her newborn baby. I didn’t have a fancy camera, but she didn’t care she just knew I would have fun. After posting the images on social media, the response was so positive that we decided to have her daughter do a 6- month photoshoot with me. For this photoshoot, I grabbed decor from all over my house to make it a little bit more professional. After posting these pictures, I got even more positive response and decided to pick it up as a hobby. I created an Instagram account dedicated to the pictures I took. I began gathering friends and asking them to model for me, and the word soon spread. I started getting inquiries from people I didn’t know.
For a few years, it became a side hustle. I had no real plan, but I did start taking official courses to learn all about lighting, posing, and editing. My work began to look different and more professional. Skip to 2020 and I decided to make Snapshots By Gabriela an official business. I didn’t want a glorified side hustle anymore. I couldn’t escape this passion of serving others. I have since shot multiple weddings, have been featured on multiple recognized blogs and continue to have a passion for documenting priceless moments for my clients. This job is so rewarding.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
In the beginning, the struggle was finding clients who would hire me without me having experience. I knew my potential and what I could create, but my potential clients hadn’t seen enough of my work to hire me. I quickly realized that offering complimentary photoshoots (at least in the beginning) allowed me to build my portfolio. Not only that but even though those photoshoots were not paid, I still gave those clients an unforgettable, professional experience that they didn’t forget. Because of that, the word spread and I now have clients who love my work and WANT to work with me.
Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I like to say I take pictures for the romantics, the huggers, the snugglers and the lovers of life. My photography is light and airy with a little oomph. I love taking pictures that reflect love and light but I am most proud of the experience I give my clients both before and after the photo shoot. I was born to serve others and make people happy. I think an honest connection with my clients is something I always strive for. I feel like what sets me apart is both my enthusiasm for what I do and making people comfortable in front of the camera. I once went through all of my client reviews, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that a common theme/phrase was “felt comfortable.” I now take pride in making sure my clients have fun and feel comfortable and natural. I never want anyone feeling forced.
What were you like growing up?
I was always a techy/curious kid. I’m not surprised I ended up with a camera in my hand. I grew up learning how to dance and had a lot of friends. I was always pretty outgoing and loved making people laugh. That same positive energy is what I bring to my business and my sessions. I love seeing people happy. I believe that is my purpose.
- Email: Snapshotsbygabriela@gmail.com
- Website: www.snapshotsbygabriela.com
- Instagram: www.Instagram.com/Snapshotsbygabriela
- Facebook: www.Facebook.com/snapshotsbygabriela
Snapshots By Gabriela