Today we’d like to introduce you to Diana Levine.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I began my career as the Designer and staff photographer at Boston Magazine, before moving to New York City for 8 years to pursue my career as a freelance photographer. While in New York, I shot for Rolling Stone, Billboard, MTV, and Converse, among other ad agencies, record labels and magazines.
I’ve been blessed to photograph some incredible people, including Alicia Keys, Kim Kardashian, Ed Sheeran, President Bill Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, President Barack Obama, Usher, Billy Corgan, One Direction, Hanson, New Kids on the Block, Ludacris, Elvis Costello, John Legend, Kylie Minogue, and Will.i.am, among others.
In 2015, my husband Matt and I made the decision to move home to Boston to raise our children (now 2 and 4 years old) near their family, including my Mom, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease 12 years ago. Since we moved back, I shoot for The Boston Globe Magazine, Boston Magazine, Harvard, MIT, and various agencies and media outlets.
I shoot a series of galleries for Boston Magazine and The Boston Globe, featuring backstage photos from various bands who are playing at Boston venues. Our latest posts include Hanson, Young the Giant, and Fitz & the Tantrums and looking forward to some really fun shows coming up.
Here’s our latest, from backstage with Hanson at House of Blues:
In addition to my work as a photographer, I produce Photo Shoot for a Cure, a series of fundraising photo shoot events benefiting The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, in honor of my Mom. Our latest event was a big party held at District Hall in Boston. To date, we’ve raised over $44,500 for Parkinson’s research.
Our September 9, 2017 party featured make up sessions by Sephora Prudential Center, hair styling by James Joseph Salon, manicures by Polished Nail Boutique, a pop up gallery from Following//Boston, an instant photo booth by Leica Store Boston, and guests could pop into various photo shoots, with 9 photographers volunteering their time. The party also featured speakers, appetizers, music and drinks, and our sponsors included Voyager Therapeutics, Acorda Therapeutics, District Hall, Acadia Pharmaceuticals, 2Sisters Senior Living Advisors and Quincy Hearing.
Save the date: year’s Photo Shoot for a Cure party will take place September 22, 2018 at District Hall!
You can learn more about Photo Shoot for a Cure here:
And my full portfolio is available here:
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I’ve been blessed in my career to have had some incredible mentors that took me under their wing as I began my career, so although my road to becoming a photographer has been filled with hard work, long nights and a lot of dedication, it has been made so much easier by having some great supporters along the way. People like my Clark University professors Stephan DiRado and Frank Armstrong, my internship advisors Lena Watts Flannery (Boston Magazine) and Ashley Barhamand (Jane Magazine), and my photo editors and art directors from Aol, Rolling Stone, Billboard, MTV and Converse, have been such an incredible source of support and encouragement throughout my career.
My biggest struggle was deciding to move to New York City. I was 22 years old and my Mom was newly diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. I knew that for me to achieve my dreams, I needed to move to New York, but I struggled with the idea of moving away from my Mom. However, she encouraged me to follow my dreams and we made the leap. We had such an incredible experience in New York and I’m so grateful for every moment we had there. But, being away from my family was hard for me. I wanted to be there in a day-to-day way for my Mom, which was challenging from 4 hours away.
Living in New York City allowed me to work with some absolutely amazing artists, brands, and media outlets. And now that we’ve transitioned back to Boston, I’ve brought with me 10 years of experience working in NYC, and am enjoying applying that work to Boston, as I work with agencies, magazines, and media outlets.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Diana Levine, Photographer – what should we know?
I’m an advertising and editorial photographer. I shoot for magazines, ad agencies, PR firms, and media outlets. I primarily photograph portraits, and some documentary work. I’ve been blessed to photograph many well-known figures, bands and artists.
I’m proud of the milestones I’ve reached in my career: seeing my photos on billboards in Times Square, shooting a magazine cover for The Boston Globe Magazine, working with The Clinton Foundation, photographing President Bill Clinton and Chelsea Clinton, shooting ad campaigns for brands like Converse and anytime I pick up a new magazine with my photos in the pages.
As a former magazine designer, I’m very familiar with what my clients need in their photos, and I think that’s helped me a lot over the years. There are certain aspects of working as a photographer that are incredibly important to me: being reliable, being trustworthy, being on-time and delivering photos to my clients that work for their needs.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
There have been so many people who have supported my career along the way. I studied photography at Clark University with Professors Stephen DiRado and Frank Armstrong, and also picked up some help and encouragement on the business aspects from Professor George Gendron. I also studied at New York University Tisch School of the Arts, with professors Jeffrey Scales (The New York Times), Mark Jenkinson and Paul Owen. Even something as simple as a vote of confidence helped propel my career — Bil Gardner, a photographer based in MA, once stopped by a photography critique and after the class, he told me that I had what it takes to become a successful photographer. Hearing that from a working photographer meant the world to me.
After graduating from college, I’ve been so lucky to have worked with incredible photo editors, art directors and clients, who inspire me to do my best work. I’ve also been so blessed to have my husband by my side throughout my entire career. We started dating at 16 years old, so he’s been with me every step of the way, encouraging and supporting my career. He is a cinematographer and entrepreneur, and he has always been my go-to for advice, support and encouragement.
- Website: dianalevine.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Headshot – Christina Cobb