We had the good fortune of connecting with Leonard Anderson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Leonard, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?

When I started out in photography, I took almost all jobs because I didn’t know what I wanted to focus on. It often meant doing photoshoots and fashion shows after my full-time job and on the weekends. It left little time to spend with my family. I was trying to establish myself in the Denver Fashion scene and thought that in the end the long hours would pay off. I found that I was getting burned out and not producing my best work. I decided that to pursue Editorial Fashion and only do the photo shoots and fashion shows that I wanted to and only if they didn’t interfere with me spending time with my family. I saw that my work improved and people sought me out to work with them. I think it’s important to find a good balance to ensure that you continue to grow in your craft and enjoy what you love. I also believe that balance will allow your family to support what you do.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?

I am a self-taught professional photographer originally from Pennsylvania. I was introduced to photography when I watched my uncle develop black & white film at the Philadelphia Navy Yard on Saturdays. My photography journey started during my time in the Army while traveling to Europe and Asia and wanting to document my travels. I’ve been shooting seriously since moving to Colorado in 2011, I spent the next few years shooting a little bit of everything while trying to figure out my niche. In 2014, I took my hobby to the next level and established Leonard Anderson Photography, LLC. I got to where I am now by attending workshops and photography conferences to learn from arguably the best photographers in the fashion and headshot industry respectively; Sal Cincotta and Peter Hurley.

I think what sets me apart from others is that I want my clients (models, actors, and everyday people) to see themselves the same way that I see them through my lens. I get a lot of people that are uncomfortable in front of the camera. I like to get them to forget that the camera is there and be themselves. I like to capture their personality and genuine emotion in each frame. I want them to have fun during the shoot so I get them to relax and take photos while asking questions and get them to laugh and take candid photos. I always close out my photoshoots with a selfie to show that we’ve had a good time. I only stop taking photos when they’re happy with what we’ve captured.

I believe that the most important part of being a successful photographer isn’t only about taking great photos. It’s more about creating a memorable experience for the client, providing great customer service, providing value, having a good business mind, and then the technical aspects of photography.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?

If my best friend was visiting, some of the things we’d have to do are:

1. A few of my favorite spots to show off are Red Rocks (concert), the Garden of the Gods, Pike’s Peak, 16th Street Mall, Rhino Art District, the Air Force Academy, City Park, Cheeseman Park, Wash Park, Wings Over the Rockies Museum, The Vehicle Vault, The Highlands Ranch Mansion, Vail (Yeti’s Grind coffee), Denver Pow Wow, and the Photography Studio (RAW Photographic Studio) for a photo shoot of course!

2. As far as food, it would include: Bad Daddy’s Burgers (Bacon burger on steroids and Bad Daddy Ale), The Broker (get a table in the vault itself), Del Frisco’s (my two favorite things are the Porter House steak and Butter Cake w/Butter Pecan Ice Cream), The Buckhorn Exchange (Cowboy Bison steak w/mashed potatoes, sirloin game tips, and rattlesnake dip are all delicious!), The Chicken Rebel (the Rancher – breaded chicken sandwich w/bacon, avocado, and ranch dressing), Perry’s (they have a great Happy Hour Menu and delicious Pork Chop!), Fogo de Chao (all of the meats!), and Bangkok Tokyo (Pad Thai is just like it was in Thailand, Chicken Coconut soup, and Yummy Roll are my favorites).

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 have to give a shoutout to my family especially my wife, who is my number one fan and support structure in my love of photography. She pushed me to start taking my love of photography seriously by buying a Groupon with a local Denver photographer. It allowed me to learn the technical aspects of photography and lighting. My daughter has been one of my (mostly) willing portrait test subjects over the years.

I’ve been fortunate to have met some amazing photographers here in Colorado and all over the United States. Brett Seeley, Don Hales, Zsanee Gaines, Christopher Mikals, Roger Williams, Peter Hurley, Joel Delgado, Sal Cincotta, Craig Lamere, and JJ Constantine are some of the photographers that have helped me in my journey through their counsel, mentoring and friendship.

I’d have to absolutely shoutout to my Dad who is my photography partner-in-crime. He and I attend conferences together and allow each other to experiment in different genres and share our knowledge with each other. Photography has single-handedly brought us closer together and allowed us to bond as father and son.

There are a host of incredibly talented models and designers that have allowed me to showcase my talent as a photographer through various collaborations.

Some of those designers are: Salwa Owens, Vandalism Designs, Francis Roces (KimonoDragons), Delmy Gooch (DGARAY Magazine), Duane Topping, Andreas Tsagas, and Guillermo Pharis.

Some of the many talented models, actors, and promoters that I’ve been fortunate to collaborate with: Tennisia Littleton-Broberg, Lesia Michelle, Lia, Ashlee Lauren, Andalysia, Kira, Joi Phillips-Daniels, Swan Jarrett, Tamika Caldwell, Thomas Wayoro, Cassandra, Tommy, Divinity, Sathi, Brienna J., Daphnee Duplaix-Heiberg, Tumroo Byambadash, Sylvia Waller, Masha P., Bella Fire, LaTasha, Jay Hill, Quintin, Jazmyn Kelly, Dorotka T., Alicia Myers, Dominique Bargaineer, Romaine Washington, Destiny Janay, and last but not least Ed (M.C. Pump).

Website: https://www.leonardandersonphoto.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/leonardandersonphoto/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/leonard-anderson-366814186/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/l_andersonphoto

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leonard.anderson.photo/

Other: https://headshotcrew.com/leonardandersonphoto

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