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I’m Rich Lander - CHARD Photo.
I’m a California based International Wedding Photographer and educator. I love my job, love the ocean, and have the largest sweet tooth known to man.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN PHOTOGRAPHY?
After working a super corporate (boring) graphic design job for 7 years, I was searching for a hobby so that I could feed my creative side again. In 2009, I received my first digital camera as a birthday gift and started taking photos. My half brothers were very young at the time so they made great models. Cute kids are always great, right? I started posting those photos to Facebook and a very brave bride asked me to shoot her wedding. I was crazy enough to say yes and now 400+ weddings later I’m here. I actually celebrated my 9 year anniversary of shooting weddings earlier this week! So thankful!
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE?
Man, this is always a difficult one. I think because the thing that I strive for is to have a CHARD style. I very much want my images to look like my own and to be recognizable right when you see them. But at the same time, I still want them to be classic and timeless. For me, I’m always looking to create romantic, natural images with that perfect little hit of California sunshine…even if it’s not shot here on the West Coast ;)
WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN AN IMAGE?
I always want things to look natural. It’s the biggest thing that I look for when posing clients…I look at things and ask ‘are there any tension points in their bodies’. If I can somehow remove that tension, I think things will look relaxed and natural.
WHAT INSPIRES OR MOTIVATES YOU?
Light. I love looking for great light. It’s become a sick obsession…when I’m driving down a familiar street but the light is looking particularly good, I make a mental note. This street looks good at this time of the day at this time of the year. I’m always trying to find that gorgeous golden light that makes my images that way that I love for them to look. What motivates me is that I get to make my own rules. I get to run my business the way that I want to. And if it fails, it’s my fault…and nobody else’s. So it motivates me to hustle and work my tail off to win the small battles each day and try to continue to get better. There’s SO much that I want to learn!
WHAT CHALLENGES YOU?
The balance between progression and consistency. I work super hard to create a consistent body of work but at the same time, I never want to become stagnant. So trying to create a slow progression where I can have consistency is something that I’m always striving for. Also…I’m really bad at taking time off. So taking a vacation is a challenge that I’m always trying to overcome haha.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE MOMENT OF A WEDDING?
I love portraits. Love them! It’s where I feel like I get to control things a bit and art direct more during other parts of the day. But honestly, since the passing of my mom a couple of years ago, the parent dances have become something that I really love. It’s that time that mom or dad has their kid to themselves again for a few minutes. I would give anything to have that with my mom one more time. I try to hide it but often times I’m tearing up while shooting those dances. Love them.
OF ALL YOUR IMAGES, DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE ONE?
Not even close. I am totally that person that goes home from every shoot thinking ‘I got nothing. I seriously got nothing.’ and then I’ll fall in love with the images after a little time away from them. If I had to pick a favorite shot today, I’d for sure pick a different one in an hour.
ANYTHING ELSE WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT RICH?
Hmm I think people always get a kick out of it when I let them know that I’m significantly color blind. Everyone asks how I can be a photographer and be color blind or how I can edit and be color blind. I don’t know haha. It just works. But don’t ever ask me what color someone’s shirt is because it’ll be purple and I’ll think it’s blue or something haha.
TELL US ABOUT DVLOP
I can’t believe how easy these presets are to use and get gorgeous tones! Just a click or two and images are looking better than I even imagined. And I love the elasticity built into the presets. You can really manipulate things but still keep the foundation of the presets in there to keep things consistent. Game changer for sure!