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Meet Austin Baffa of Austin Baffa Photography in Orange County

Today we’d like to introduce you to Austin Baffa.

Austin, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I have had a passion for visual storytelling since I was a kid, and throughout my youth I would take pictures and make short films with friends. When I transitioned from High School to University, I made a decision to study Cinema Arts at Vanguard University of Southern California, and there I was able to develop a foundation in the arts and in cinema that helped me gain direction for where I would want to go in the future. When I graduated from University in 2015, I moved to Northern California to spend a year working with and mentoring youth in Santa Cruz County, and while I was there I began to save up for the equipment I needed to help launch my freelance business.

I was able to reach my goal after 6 months and I bought a new camera and equipment required to begin shooting professionally. I spent much time up there shooting personal projects and honing my skills as a photographer while working up to 70 hours a week with other jobs I had at the time. I made the decision to move back down to Southern California last June and within a day of moving back I began to network with other artists in the area and began to book as many wedding/engagement shoots as possible, no matter the pay because I knew it would be worth it later on.

Over the last year, I have been blessed with so many opportunities to grow my business and to grow my skill as an artist. I spent most of the last year freelancing and shooting weddings and engagements and personal projects with other artists. I also work full time as a commercial video editor for a fashion company based in Orange County. I am very busy between freelance gigs and my full-time job, but I am doing what I love and that is what matters. In addition to that, I have had the opportunity to work with local churches and non-profits by helping them with videos for community-based outreach programs, and it has been truly incredible. No matter what career someone goes into, I think that it is really important to use your talents and skills and passions to help the community around you and to think about the impact of your work at all times. Whether it’s weddings, passion projects, or personal endeavors, you have to do it with all of your heart and your strength and fully commit to the best possible work you can, with the hope that someone somewhere will be impacted in a positive way.

I am just really thankful and grateful for the opportunities I have had in the last year and I plan on pursuing this passion of visual storytelling as long as God gives me breath.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
My journey over the last year has been such a season of growth and humility. This last season was definitely one that tested my resilience. But I consider it pure joy when I face a trial because I know that it will refine me and make me a stronger person. So ya, some tough things happened this last year, with family, friends, losing loved ones, and other tough situations, but every time something happened, I saw it as an opportunity to grow with those around me.

In terms of my business, it was slow at first, with trying to network with other artists and find jobs and support myself. Definitely not easy. But I truly believe that when you find what you love, you have to fight like hell for it. And it has been really cool to see the hard work pay off, and I definitely have a long way to go with it all, but I am so excited for this next part of the journey.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Austin Baffa Photography – what should we know?
Austin Baffa Photography currently focuses on weddings, elopements, and engagements. That is where I am putting most of my time into right now. I have side projects that I have worked on for local businesses, non-profits, or individuals as well. I love doing destination shoots and I have and will continue to travel literally anywhere with a couple to get the perfect shot. I am proud of Austin Baffa Photography because I went into this business to make an impact in peoples’ lives and to capture real stories with raw emotion, and I believe my work has accurately represented that goal.

I care much more about capturing authentic and candid emotion and I focus on creating an authentic environment where the people I work with feel comfortable expressing their honest emotions. When I work with couples, I engage with them honestly and explain up front that my goal is to capture how they truly feel about each other. The intimate moments, the candid laughs, the times when they forget that I am even there taking pictures, those are the shots I go for. I think my pursuit of authenticity and honesty in my work sets me apart from a lot of other talented artists. I think as an artist I have an obligation to capture intimate moments that make us human. And with my work that is what I go for.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
I have to thank my friends and family for encouraging me along the way and also thank God for opening doors and blessing me with amazing opportunities. I am where I am because of the wonderful people in my life.

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