Today we’d like to introduce you to Caroline Klaar.
Caroline, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I have always loved photography and used to ask for disposable cameras for my birthday growing up. When I was 18 I bought my first professional grade digital camera and had my mind set on “becoming the best photographer in the world” and began freelancing as a nightlife photographer in my little hometown in Sweden and somehow booked a couple weddings (an honorable job I was nowhere ready for at that time!) . The more I learned about photography, the more I realized how little I knew and I lost my self-esteem and belief that I could do this professionally – it was an impossible dream and I put my camera away for almost 5 years.
I moved to Boston in February 2011 to work as an Au Pair (a live-in nanny) for a family with three young children for a year and I loved it! During this year I practically had my camera glued to my hands and I photographed every little outing I did – be it a trip to the local Starbucks or any of our travels across the US and I gained a little of that lost self-esteem back. During this year I also met my now husband Pedro, and it was during one of our trips to Disneyland that he saw how I paused and waited for a shadow to appear on a wall inside the Disney castle that he noticed that I had an “eye” for photography and that I noticed small changes in light, contrasts etc that made really good photographs. He pushed me to believe in myself and that my passion for photography should be more than just a hobby, and it is all thanks to him that I later decided to study and get a BS in photography at the New England Institute of Arts in Brookline.
It’s not always easy to study at a higher level when English is not your first language and I often second guessed myself. I remember one time during my first (American) algebra class when I had to ask my math teacher what the question asked for, since I wasn’t used to the American math terminology and didn’t understand even the simplest question. But, as most international students, we come here all alone to succeed and probably have the incentive to work harder than most American students who already have friends, family and a network to fall back on. I graduated as an honor student with a 4.0 GPA and had been working as a tutor and teachers assistant in Photography during my years at NEiA, so all that hard work paid off!
Since 2015, I have been working hard to build my brand (Klaar Photography) from the ground up and I have probably made every single mistake possible, but it has also taken me forward to where I am today! I have worked as an assistant to a very successful interior photographer here in Boston, been a second shooter to multiple wedding photographers to learn the trade and invested so much time and money into becoming a better photographer and business person. I now book my own weddings, have a bridal registry event coming up at West Elm at the end of the month and even been published in magazines, both in the US and internationally! I am still nowhere close to where I want to be, but when I think back at this journey I realize that my 18 year old self never gave up and that I indeed am still working towards becoming “the best photographer in the world”! (…alright, maybe the best photographer in Boston?)
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I tell all my friends to follow their dreams and passions in life, but also to be prepared that it is not going to be easy all the time. It is so much easier to work for an already established company with experienced people and be told what to do rather than to build something up from scratch, but the extra work is so worth it when you get to do what you love and see your hard work grow into something bigger! My husband always tell me “baby steps, caroline. baby steps” when I get impatient when things don’t move along as quickly as I would like, and that helps me put everything into perspective. I am baby-stepping it one inch at the time and I am enjoying the walk!
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Klaar Photography – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
I love seeing my client’s reactions when they see their family photos printed for the first time and I believe strongly in printing what you want to keep because Facebook and Instagram won’t be around forever… I love to be able to provide family heirlooms to my clients, and my clients are always sooooo grateful when they see their family photos printed on a beautiful canvas. We all got so excited when the technology allowed us to take photos with our phones and forgot to print our memories. I don’t have many photos at all from when I was 15-22 because of this reason and I am really thankful that I grew up when we still used film cameras so that my parents had to print our photos in order to have them. It is so easy to think “I will do it later”, but then the photos disappear with the next phone upgrade or social media channel…
For this reason I offer my clients printed artwork and I have software that helps me project my clients’ family photos on their walls to see how beautiful their home looks with their memories displayed.
So yeah… I am very passionate about capturing this particular moment in time and make sure it is printed so that it can be passed on for generations! (Wouldn’t it be really amazing to be able to look at photos of your great grandmother when she was a young child back in the 1800’s? That won’t happen to our great grandchildren as long as we only post our photos on Facebook…just sayin’! 🙂 )
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
At this point in my business I am mostly a wedding photographer and work with families on location, but in the future I would LOVE to expand my business and open up my own studio, have a few employees and specialize in photographing families and especially children! I live for capturing children’s personalities and spirit because this moment in time will never come back, children grow up, and my photos will only become more cherished for each year that passes from now on! I want a studio full of beautiful photographic artwork. I want anyone who comes in to feel inspired and reminded that we need to capture this very moment in our lives so that we can remember it later in life.
- Photo session: $200 (no photos or digital files included)
- Collections: begin at $400
- Address: 467 Beacon st, Boston, MA, 02115
- Website: http://www.klaarphotography.com
- Phone: 617.209.9360
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: Klaarphotography
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KlaarPhotography/
Headshot of me: Zack Zerbe Photography