Pose For Me

Jun 21, 2011 No Comments

As a small business owner of 20+ years, photography guru Lynn Parks has a trick or two up her sleeve about sustaining a company. All things considered, Parks claims it all boils down to one simple mindset: “Think like a man,” she told InterviewHer.com. Parks then laughs, and explains in an offhand manner that “unfortunately, it’s still a man’s world in business.” And though thinking like a man is a broad and uncategorized statement, Parks swiftly explains what she means.lynn-parks

She advises women to follow their heart, and adopt the career they feel they want to pursue, but don’t stop there. Besides passion, there’s a practicality that comes into play. “Look at what the average income of that position is, not just the top two best ones in the world, but the average,” she says. If you can live comfortably with that amount of money, the next step is to educate yourself. After that, work for free.

“I went to all the top photographers and assisted for free, and interned,” she says. So how did this savvy photographer snag her career? Originally she began a career path as a dental hygienist. “I was bored,” she says. “Terribly.”

In need of a creative outlet, Parks enrolled in night school for photography. After graduating, she began working both jobs. Once Parks built up a client base, she decided to pursue photography full time. Anyone who browses Parks’ work can see she is a master at her art. She has three Web sites: lynnparks.com, lynnparksart.com and lynnparksportraits.com, each catering to a different set of clients. Parks’ broad range of experience allows her to work in many areas of photography, and her work ranges from fine art to headshots, and family to corporate clients.


Photo: Lynn Parks

Parks’ ability to see and understand lighting is part of what makes her work so special. “I look at someone’s face when I first lynn-parks-artmeet them. I look at their features. Some people need a softer light. Sometimes with guys you need a little harder light. All of that came from experience,” she says. However, diligent lighting isn’t unique in photographing people. It’s also important to be able to show the personality and the essence of a product when showcasing it in a photograph. To be a good photographer, “you really have to know lighting,” she explains. In these days, with digital photography, it’s a little easier to adjust lighting and retouch photos than it was with film, when Parks first started. However, Parks’ experience with lighting gives her an edge over those who rely on computers to clean up photos.


Photo: Lynn Parks

Even though the transition from film to digital was challenging, Parks says she loves to change with the trends. “I think a big mistake with a lot of photographers, especially after 10 or 15 years, is that they become complacent.” When the industry began moving from film to digital, Parks new she had to take the plunge. She says it was a big commitment. She had to swap out all her film systems and equipment for their newer digital replacements.

In addition to the financial burden of replacing her film equipment, there was also the challenge of learning a new system. Clients wanted the quality of film and the convenience of digital at the same time. But, “I knew that if I didn’t make that change, I was going to lose clients.” Still, Parks insists that changing with the trends of the business is one of the most exciting parts of her job – it keeps her creative. Parks is always studying art, television and other cultures’ art in order to continue to push her own creativity.


Photo: Lynn Parks

So, does the lighting artist have any tips for the camera shy subject? Of course! Parks offers a slice of quick advice for those concerned with looking good in photos. Study a photo of yourself that you like. Figure out the angle of your face, which way you’re facing and whether your chin is pointed up or down. “That’s your angle,” she says. The next time someone points a camera at you, quickly hit that angle. You’ll be paparazzi ready in no time.



Written by: Mary Ronau
Edited by: Bridgette Larcada





Cities, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Photography, She Walks The Talk
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