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Conversations with the Inspiring Augusta Rose

Today we’d like to introduce you to Augusta Rose.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Augusta. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I’ve felt the impulse to capture and share snippets of the world since I was a child. I started taking photos with disposable cameras when I was ten, and although none of them were any good, I fell in love with photography immediately. My competence grew over time through trial and error, a process that was supported by my (extremely patient) family. They continue to believe in the potential of my business, as it’s growing steadily each year.

When I was a sophomore in high school, I was hired for my first freelance job through word of mouth, taking senior portraits. Around this time, I started attending meetings at the Cape Cod Camera Club and became involved with the New England Camera Club Council (NECCC) where I connected with a number of accomplished photographers who encouraged me to continue freelancing. I used the threads of information I learned at meetings, workshops, conferences, and in conversations to weave the fabric of my own photographic technique. I attribute much of my progress to the friends and mentors I met through these organizations: Bob Singer, Paul Blackmore, Pedro Blanco, Shiv Verma, and Rick Sammon to name a few.

My initial interest in documentary photography stemmed from a fascination with my father’s National Geographic magazine collection. It was my first exposure to different cultures around the world, and I found myself enthralled by all kinds of stories. One image that stood out to me that has directly influenced my work is the June 1985 cover photo “Afghan Girl.” I was captivated by her “haunting green eyes” that millions of people unanimously responded to, impacted by the raw sense of vulnerability and power the photo conveyed.

This is the first example I can remember of seeing unfiltered emotions communicated through photography. I discovered self-portraiture as a way to develop my skills and discovered an immense sense of fulfillment in documenting my own emotional experiences. This work is centered around exploring the objective recognition of personal power, and the value of creative expression. My desire to capture other people embodying their power led me to create Be Your Creature, a blog and photography offering in alignment with this concept.

As I learned more about impactful storytelling, I came to appreciate the subtle complexities that we all share as humans, as well as the ones that set us apart. This passion and curiosity invoked in me a desire to travel and connect with other people all around the world. The decision to be a traveling photographer has turned into an important aspect of my career, which has resulted in clientele spread across the continental US.

Great, 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?
I remain challenged by medical issues as well as the stress of feeling untethered while traveling. When I have to adapt to new environments and spend a considerable amount of time planning, I find it difficult to dedicate the necessary time to healing. However, I’m fortunate to have strong innate networking skills that provide me with sources of support and hope.

My advice to young women starting their journey is:

1) Develop self-care habits that you can do anywhere. Build them into your life. Create balance from the beginning.

2) Set up organizational systems early: Approach your work with the intent of maintaining an organized workflow. Any early efforts towards this will pay off immensely further down the road. Also, remember to have reliable backup systems!

3) Check in with your heart from time to time. Trust it to guide your decisions in both your personal and professional life.

4) Respect and honor your achievements, especially the ways you impact others through your work. It’s important for entrepreneurs to learn how to manage inner conflict and self-doubt, especially when faced with overwhelming obstacles. Reminding yourself of the positive influence you’ve had so far will keep you inspired and boost your productivity.

What should we know about Augusta Rose Photography? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
My artistic philosophy is to conduct my photoshoots through an empathetic lens so that my subjects feel safe and comfortable. I specialize in candid portraiture, almost always using natural lighting. I value the process of establishing a genuine bond of trust with my clients so that their photos are as authentic as possible. I focus on providing a judgment-free environment in order to document vulnerable moments while preserving their dignity.

One facet of my work that sets me apart from other photographers is the fact that my two main offerings are original services that evolved from a strong passion to empower families as well as individuals. In addition to Be Your Creature, I’ve spent the past two years developing Preserving Legacy, a service that provides families with meaningful documentation of their loved ones in the form of a photographic heirloom that can be shared with current and future generations. This concept was originally inspired by members of my father’s side of the family, many of whom are devoted to historical preservation. Observing their dedication to ancestral knowledge sparked my own curiosity about other familial stories, which eventually led me to create Preserving Legacy.

I think documentaries are another exceptionally compelling medium to tell some of the most profound stories on our planet. Since graduating from Fitchburg State University in 2012, I’ve produced five short documentaries. My most recent documentary Bionic Stride chronicled a young woman’s journey from Northampton to Australia to receive cutting-edge surgery in order to improve her mobility after having double above knee amputation. In 2013, I volunteered to produce a promotional video for a humanitarian non-profit organization that builds schools in remote regions of Nepal. Similar to my unique photography services, my documentary subjects derive from a personal call to action focused on empowerment: globally, locally, and individually.

It would be great to hear about any apps, books, podcasts or other resources that you’ve used and would recommend to others.
I find myself continuously inspired by Elizabeth Purvis, The Minimalists, Biz Women Rock! and Hurray Kimmay whose business coaching allowed me to establish new ways of working that have streamlined my workflow process.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Personal Photo by Mary-Frances White

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