For many, going into a creative field can have a stigma to it. I remember several concerned conversations with parents when I decided to study art instead of biology. However, it is my own belief that doing something creative that you really love can be so much more rewarding and successful, even if it is more risky. Eight months ago, Caroline Bell decided to pick up a camera and start her own photography company. Now, this self-taught photographer is quickly gaining speed, and it’s hard to ignore the beauty and talent in her fashion, senior portrait and wedding photography.
Name: Caroline Bell
Role: Photographer, Caroline Koehler Photography
CollegeFashionista: When did you start getting into photography?
Caroline Bell: I’ve been an artist my whole life. I did drawing and painting in high school, and it really trains your eye. So, it made it really easy to transfer over to photography about eight months ago. I just made a Facebook page at first and got a really good response, so I decided to move forward with it and do some paid shoots. It was pretty easy for me to pick it up. It’s all about training your eye and learning how to get what you want. For me, it’s like live painting.
CF: What is your relationship to fashion like, and how has doing fashion photography changed this relationship?
CB: I’ve always liked fashion or at least dressing nice and in a unique way. Photography has made me love it so much more. Recently, I’ve been really inspired by Urban Outfitters, Free People and Anthropologie’s style of photography. I am extremely hands-on because I want my model’s makeup, clothes and hair to all look a certain way. I want it to be my style and vision and represent my image. It’s the same way with my own clothing; I want it to represent me.
CF: What advice do you have for other young people who are looking to start their own company?
CB: You’re in the real world, and you have to stick up for yourself. Set goals. It can be easy to set goals in school and see yourself achieve them when there’s a set path, but doing it on your own is really rewarding.
CF: What do you see in store for Caroline Koehler Photography in the near future?
CB: Some of my goals for this year are to have 1000 followers on my Facebook page and Instagram and to shoot around 10 weddings. One of my goals for fashion is to have designers or companies send me products to shoot. I would love to have my photos published in a magazine or at least reposted by one. I don’t have anything to lose, so I’m just going to go for it. If it’s within a year, thats awesome. If it’s not, I just have to keep working. I set very high goals for myself, but looking at what I’ve done in the past eight months, I think it could be possible. If you really love something and go after it, you will do well. That’s what I’m trying to do.