During the ride over to my first creative industry interview I was mentally going over the questions I needed to ask. We arrived at the address to a well-manicured front yard with willow trees, a gravel driveway, and Avalon Photography signage that lead us right to the studio. The landscaping layout of the backyard was impeccable, perfect for outdoor shoots year round. The actual studio itself was very inviting and fit with the style of photography Avalon is known for.
I met Steve, who was at his desk filling out some paperwork. A youthful middle-aged man, with dark hair, light eyes, and a warm smile. He showed me the two sides of the studio and lighting set up, as he had shot some vintage motorcycles earlier that day. Samples of Avalon Photography work graced the walls and shelves of the studio. After a brief moment to set up we began the interview. Steve claims that he never got into photography because it was his passion; it was more a means to an end. Passion is good, but the ability to do what you do and do it well is more important to him. He had worked many different types of jobs and even did his time in the Navy where he worked in the hospital taking photos of internal organs. Learning the craft of darkroom photography through the years was just a part of what his worked called of him. When in 1996 a friend and photographer was going to sell his photography business Steve decided right then he buy the business and continue it on from there.
As a photographer one of the eternal struggles seems to be dealing with people, as these are his main subjects. From flakes, to bad attitudes, and constant reschedules these are the downside to customer interaction. While the positives are major thank you and profuse recommendations he receives from those who see the final product and love it. You can find Avalon Photography on FaceBook, Pinterest, there is a studio blog and on Yelp. Steve claims he’d like to extend his reach using social media, but as a guy who started out mainly advertising in newspapers and yellow pages he sees the times have changed and needs to catch up a little.
As the interview came to a close Steve shared with me a quote that summed up his view of success, saying that if you can argue for your limitations means you probably can’t. Furthermore, he goes on to say that true success is living what you do and that sometimes the best sometimes comes out of less and not more. You can find Avalon Photography at (530) 891-3442 or click the link avalonportraits.com Their expertise is family, wedding, and Senior Portraits. If this is what you are looking for I greatly suggest you give Steve a call, he is one of the good guys.
Since this interview I was invited by Steve himself to witness him in action as he shot the school and yearbook photos for Montessori School located here in Chico, Ca. It takes an extremely personable kind of person to deal with an entire school of students and anxious parents and Steve handled it like a pro. It was a treat to see him interact everyone and see how he dealt with the shy students who wouldn’t smile to the kids who wanted to wear sunglasses. As a parent, Steve has the experience of dealing with his own kids so it wasn’t much of a stretch for him to get into a kid friendly mode to capture those memorable moments.
And to find more from Able Abe Studios be sure to check out these links Able Abe fan page, Able Abe Z store , and Able Abe Photography .