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Meet West Los Angeles Photographer: Rachel Stelter

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rachel Stelter.

Rachel, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I fell in love with photography when I was 15 and spent the better half of high school either in the darkroom or exploring my hometown of Chicago taking photographs. It’d be winter in Chicago and my dad and I would go into the city so I could take photos at night; I loved how the city came alive with lights after dark. The second time I visited New York City, I took 25 rolls of film in a single day; thank goodness with digital you don’t have to pay to develop film anymore! My love of creating didn’t stop there – over the years I’ve worked in fashion design, styling, and developing wine brands from the ground up. I love being able to visually convey a mood or emotion.

After my freshman year of college, I spent a month in Florence, Italy studying digital photography, and enjoyed further honing those skills during vacations throughout the years to Peru, Thailand, and Scandinavia.

After college, I worked in the fashion industry and got pretty burnt out on putting in long hours for little gratitude, and felt like there was something missing from my life. I missed creating beautiful images, and after my own wedding in 2012, realized what an incredibly powerful medium wedding photography could be. That’s when I started photographing weddings and engagements. There are so many emotions on a wedding day, to be able to capture those moments for my couples is truly the most rewarding feeling.

Has it been a smooth road?
The biggest adjustment has been transitioning from photographing mostly urban landscapes and some candids to photographing people. When I first started getting into wedding photography, I signed up for workshops and courses led by other photographers I greatly respect and invested a lot of time in critiquing my own work and absorbing as many posing tips as possible from others. Getting couples to feel comfortable in front of my camera is my #1 goal, as it’s not just about delivering great images, but making sure they have fun in the process!

What role has luck had in your life and career?
I’m very fortunate in that my parents were always incredibly supportive of me pursuing whatever career path I wanted. I was never pressured by them to follow a certain path because of a family profession or because that’s what’s most lucrative. The rest has been a result of hard work, teaching myself new things even when I was terrified of failing, and constantly analyzing what’s working and where I can do better.

Do you feel like there are certain traits that increase the likelihood of success?
A strong work ethic & extreme curiosity – for better or worse, I put everything I have into every project I take on, and genuinely enjoy the challenge of learning something new.

What do you love about our city and what do you dislike?
Coming from Chicago I love the weather in LA! It’s always sunny and makes it so much easier to be active and enjoy the outdoors. I also love that there are so many other awesome places within driving distance – Santa Barbara, San Diego, Joshua Tree, Big Bear…the list goes on! The traffic is my least favorite. There are some great areas of LA that I don’t visit often because it just takes so long to get there.

Pricing:

  • Wedding packages currently start at $2450 for 6 hours of coverage

Contact Info:

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