Allie Morrison is a fine art kids photographer from Midwestern, United States. She started photography when her first child was born. She loves to spend her days chasing chickens and ducks and capturing her children on their little farm.
In her words about style, “I love to play when I am photographing. I am not one to strictly follow rules, so I am often bending them in the name of good fun and experimentation. My attitude is to always be learning and making a mess. Like my kids, I like messes quite a lot and enjoy making them. I don’t make perfect photographs, which is something I used to feel upset about but now I take a certain about of pride in. It defines who I am as an artist. I would describe my style as emotional and messy with an element of fun and humor.”
Thanks, Allie for accepting for our invite. Please read on.
Few words about yourself?
My name is Allie Morrison. I’m a natural light photographer and mother of four young children living in the midwestern United States. I spend my days chasing chickens and ducks and capturing my life with my children on our little farm in the middle of the woods.
What are your childhood memories towards the arts?
I grew up surrounded by artists. My grandfather and great uncle were painters as well as my mother. My mother made the most wonderful watercolor portraits and the two of us share a love for portraiture. I spent many teenage summers sitting for her as a model while she and her artist friends painted me. I think it was hard not to absorb some of her sense of color and composition. My father has a very deep appreciation for the arts and shared it with his children. He’s an incredible musician and we both share a love for literature, the theater, and making music. He took us to art museums all over the world and taught us the history behind the works we saw.
Art has always held a very special and sentimental place in my life and connects me to my family and those I love most. Also, as a mother it’s very easy to lose your sense of self and to become solely wrapped up in the day to day of caring for little ones, art is something that I do to keep my self-alive and breathing.
What first drew you to photography and how did you discover it?
I’ve loved photography since I held my very first disposable camera at age seven and took twenty-four blurry images of my beloved stuffed animals. Later, I fell in love with the camera on my iPhone and learned a lot just by its limitations. The automatic, fixed lens of the iPhone forced me to concentrate on the only things I could control — composition and light. In fact, I still prefer a prime lens.
When my first child was born, my husband bought me my first DSLR – which I had no idea how to use – in order to document her young days. I remember being so frustrated when I just couldn’t make an image that matched what I saw in my mind. I would stay up all night, nursing a baby and reading everything I could get my hands on, trying desperately to understand how to make the kinds of moody, dynamic scenes I could see but not capture. I taught myself photography at the same time that I was learning how to be a mother and so the two, for me, will always be intertwined: Love and tears and hard work.
How would you describe your style of photography?
I love to play when I am photographing. I am not one to strictly follow rules, so I am often bending them in the name of good fun and experimentation. My attitude is to always be learning and making a mess. Like my kids, I like messes quite a lot and enjoy making them. I don’t make perfect photographs, which is something I used to feel upset about but now I take a certain about of pride in. It defines who I am as an artist. I would describe my style as emotional and messy with an element of fun and humor.
Your photos of kids are very inspiring and stand between Fine-art and Photography. Could you please explain?
Thank you! I try hard to take off my “mom goggles” and to make images that many people might feel a connection to, without having to know me or my children. I love to expose an emotional reality of a moment rather than the physical reality, in the same way, that an impressionist painter wishes to paint.
You have captured some amazing portraits of your kids, what is the secret behind taking a good portrait?
Thank you for that kind compliment! Patience. All I can say is patience. I have four small kids so I feel that my odds of getting one of them to cooperate and play with me is higher than average. We usually have a lot of fun together and I ask them “Who wants to come to play with me and make a picture?” Sometimes they will even fight over who will play with me. Other times I have to bring chocolate.
Also, every child is different and I try to respect their differences. I have two children who enjoy the camera and two children who don’t at all. I don’t like to force anything because it will show in the image. I have to work with what they’ll give me which becomes its own fun challenge and often, when I am having fun, they are having fun.
Few words on your Post Processing techniques?
I had the privilege to take a phenomenal online class with one of my photography heroes a few years ago that changed my world with regard to post-processing. Roxanne Bryant’s “Editing for Artists” helped me stay away from presets and edit each photograph as a unique work of art. I hand edit each photograph in Lightroom and try to do the bare minimum to keep the photo looking clean and authentic. I truly enjoy the art of editing as much as I love photographing – it feels like painting and I can get lost in it.
Which photographers have inspired you?
There are so many! Roxanne Bryant, Alain LaBoile, Sarah Scott, Aimee McNamee, Ryan Muirhead, Alex Webb, Dorthea Lang, Dorothy Padilla, Amy Grace and Summer Murdock to name just a few!
What camera and lenses do you use the majority of the time?
What is the best compliment you received so far?
My kids want to be photographers when they grow up, and when my five-year-old daughter sees a pretty patch of light she will run to get me. Yesterday, she woke me up at 6 am (which is not always a great idea) because, “Mom, I know you don’t like to be waked up, but I knew you would love this beautiful light and I didn’t want you to miss it.” When she sees the beautiful light, she thinks of me. That is the best compliment in the world.
Apart from photography, tell me about your hobbies and interests?
I love music and play the piano. I also love writing and mixed media and digital art as well as art history.
Thanks again for providing 121 Clicks with this opportunity to interview you. Any final thoughts for our readers?
I feel so honored to have been asked about my thoughts and my process. Thank you so much for showing an interest in my work. I am still relatively new to photography and feel I still have so much to learn. I might always feel that way — at least that is my hope. I think it’s important to always be learning something new and connecting with people in ways that matter.
You can find Allie Morrison on the Web:
All the pictures in this post are copyrighted to Allie Morrison. Their reproduction, even in part, is forbidden without the explicit approval of the rightful owners.