We had the good fortune of connecting with Elizabeth Osberg and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Elizabeth, what’s something about your industry that outsiders are probably unaware of?
When it comes to school portraits there is a lot of misconception that it’s a one and done situation. That’s what we’ve been trained to believe. I operate on a different philosophy; creating images unique to each student by engaging with them, making them feel seen, and creating beautiful images that reflect who they are.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I strive to capture both students and families in honest and authentic ways. When it comes to my fine art school portraits, I don’t want the students I work with to feel like simply a name on a list that gets one shot at a good photo. I chat with them, get to know them the best I can in the few moments we spend together, and try to get a sense of who they are, while capturing their authentic self. As for my family clients, I’ve learned over the years of trial and error that documentary is the best way for me to artfully capture families, because that’s how I love capturing my own family. I want the families I work with to see for themselves that their everyday life and routines are beautiful and meaningful. That there’s so much to be celebrated and remembered in those day to day moments. That each family deserves a rich visual legacy, that every member deserves to see the importance of their role in the family, and these memories deserve a space to be shared.
It’s honestly taken me several years to get to the point I’m at today. I’ve had to wrestle with how I feel about what I do and what the main focus of my business should be, instead of doing the types of things I thought I should do. It’s been a journey that I’m finally seeing come to fruition. I’ve learned a lot as I navigate the world of time management as a wife, mother, and business owner. As I watched others around me bloom and grow, I had to tell myself that that particular moment in time wasn’t right for me, but it would come once I figured out what my true passion was. I feel like my patience is finally paying off and I’m starting to proudly see the fruits of my labor. It takes patience, consistency, and hard work.
I guess that would be the biggest thing I’ve learned as a business owner. Don’t ever give up. Be patient. It’s totally cliche, but it’s so true. There are so many paths you can take in the world of photography. Where you begin doesn’t always have to be where you end up. As you grow and learn, your art grows with you and people will support you if they know the heart behind your work.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
This is so hard to answer, because I’m such an introvert and such a home body. We always like to take our out of town guests on a hike, or to see something beautiful in this amazing state of ours. We often journey up to Evergreen, or Morrison for a hike. Then maybe to dinner at The Pint Room (especially on a live music night) or Walter’s 303 Pizza. We love our local eateries and try to support them as much as possible.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I wouldn’t be on this journey if it wasn’t for the encouragement of several key groups. The first is my family. Their overall support and encouragement as I grow my business is all that matters to me in the whole world! They are my inspiration and my lens on life and what drives me in my documentary family work.
In my fine art school work the support and guidance of the unPacked group created by Michelle L. Morris and the Schooled group created by Elena Blair have been second to none! I have learned so much from both these lovely and supportive groups over the years. It’s truly helped propel me in the area of fine art school portraits. The other group that has supported me for years, and really helped launch my fine art school portraits division, is Front Range Christian School. Their administration gave me the opportunity to start photographing their students because they were tired of the typical school portrait providers and they have allowed me to hone my craft and helped spread the word about my services.
All images copyright Elizabeth Osberg Photography