Guest Judge//Alicia Thwaites// Alicia T Photography

This week we have the wonderful Alicia Thwaites of Alicia T Photography. Take a few moments to read about Alicia's photography journey. 

1. Tell us about yourself...

Hi everyone, I'm Alicia! I'm the scatter brained goofball behind the lens at aliciaTphoto. A lady who drinks way to much coffee (until it's time to switch to wine), who totally sings while I'm driving, and who despises doing laundry with an unyielding passion. I'm a full time mom and part time photographer who was born and raised in the frozen tundra of Winnipeg, Canada and will likely be here all my life. I'm wife to a handsome rock radio DJ turned pool guy, and the mama of 2 wild boys who are 2.5 & 4.5 years old. Our life is chaotic, repetitive, boring, amazing and wonderfully ours.

2. What ignited your passion for photography, and what fuels it now?

My dad is a hobbiest photographer who got me my first camera on my first day of kindergarten, and I've been documenting the world around me on and off ever since. It's just always been part of who I am. I got my first SLR (yes you read that right.... SLR. No 'D'. You can use that to date me if you want HA!) in my early 20's when I decided to take my love beyond just point and shoots and I have been learning ever since. In my mid 20's I decided to try to make a career of this passion and put myself through photography school in 2008/09. Sadly after I got my diploma, student loans and mortgages needed to be paid so the camera got put on the back burner for some time while I worked a couple of different day jobs. In 2013, when my eldest son was 1 year old, I picked up the business again and haven't looked back. I'm fueled by the raw and real stories that make up our every day lives. I consider myself a family photojournalist with a side of birth photographer. I love documenting my boys as they grow and I love providing my precious clients with photos of their families that go beyond just what they look like.  

3. What’s in your camera bag right now, what do use the most? the least?

In my gear bag I've got a Nikon D610 and D700. I'm usually rolling with my 610 and 35mm nikkor f1.8 but have been known to switch it up from time to time for my 85mm f1.8 or the 24-70mm f2.8 I stole from my dad. I've also got 2 nifty 50's (f1.8 & f1.4)  that I don't think I've touched in years... and then there's my old Minolta film camera that I've been meaning to pick up for the longest time, as well as my dad's Nikon FM (circa 1970's) that I also love to borrow when he lets me. I may also dream of getting my hands on a Hasselblad some day.

4. What’s your dream project or shoot?

I would love to do a "year in the life". To document a family for one day a month for an entire year would be amazing. To watch them grow and change and evolve as the year goes on would be such a spectacular thing to witness. I do it with my own family, and I love it. 


5. What is the biggest challenge you face as a photographer?

Convincing people, whether clients or friends or family, that real is the new perfect. That our messy, busy, chaotic lives are imperfectly perfect simply because they're our own, and they're worth remembering. That our every day stories are not boring or unworthy of being documented because we might not look like a family out of a sitcom or have a house right out of a magazine. It's hard to see the beauty in our own lives when we're so busy living them, but I try to show people that wall worthy moments happen every single day if we take the time to watch for them.

6. If you had $500 to spend on photography...

How should you spend it?

I should put it towards getting my laptop fixed. It would be nice to be able to work/edit on the go again instead of being confined to a desktop.

How do you wish you could spend it?

I wish I could put it towards a mentorship with Kirsten Lewis.

How would you really spend it?

New memory cards and finally getting a client management program. My scatterbrained self could use some serious organization in my life.


7. Is there any one thing you wish someone had told you at the very

beginning of your photography journey?

Don't try to fit the mold. Don't do what everyone else is doing because you think that's what you need to do to be successful. Spend time learning new things, exploring different techniques and finding your own unique voice. I guarantee you it's in there. And remember to grow all ways, always.