A.J. Semiday – Mustard & Garnet Photography
This month’s featured photographer is A.J. Semiday. He’s a relatively new photographer, but his work is awesome. We hope you love his interview!
Business Name & Contact Details: Mustard & Garnet Photography
DA: How did you get into Photography?
AJ: Actually, I am very new to photography in sense of being the one capturing the photos. I have always worked with photographers and others setting up shoot ideas and concepts. I was always drawn but my resources before were limited.
I really just love creating art. I know that sounds cliché, but it’s true. Coming from the dance world I think that dancers physics are so captivating. I have always loved the quote by Albert Einstein “Dancers are the athletes of God.” If you have ever watched a dancer move it just stirs up so many different emotions in a person it’s truly amazing. That is where I feel like I have birthed my passion to be a dance photographer. Though I will shoot other styles, I feel that with my training as a dancer it has given me a foundation to understand my subject and connect with them on a different level.
I am simply a dreamer I love to dream and somehow bring it to life to share with others.
DA: How are you different from other photographers?
AJ: I feel like something that is important to me is to make sure whoever I am working with feels comfortable. I want to create an environment no matter the location where they can feel like they are at home and can truly be themselves. I want them to not feel like this is a “job” I think it’s important to make the person feel safe. Being photographed is a vulnerable thing no matter how comfortable you are in front of the camera. I want to ensure that there is always a safe place for them to express themselves.
DA: What is your favorite location to shoot?
AJ: I live in the Pacific North West. So there is so much out here that is aesthetically pleasing to the eye. I love on location shoots, so right now anywhere outside. I am excited for some hikes this summer to do some Mountain shots. I will be traveling this year so look out for me. I plan on visiting Portland OR, Seattle WA, and Vancouver BC.
DA: Who inspires you?
AJ: Like I mentioned before Dancers are a huge inspiration for me as an artist. I truly think that what they can do is simply stunning to see. With that are other dance photographers such as Jordan Matters, Ballet Zaida, and Rachel Neville. I am hugely inspired by one of my great friends Joshua Whitehead, who is a dancer with Ballet West and an AMAZING photographer.
Ok! haha to be cheesy I am motivated and inspired by my beautiful wife Stephanie and my two daughters Amelia(3y) and Flynn (3m). You will see them on my Instagram a lot.
DA: Do you have a favorite shot (or two)?
AJ: One of my favorite shots is of Dancer Grace Porteous in the snow. It was 21 degrees out and she was en pointe. She was a trooper and we got some amazing shots. Another shot I like is of Dancer Truman Lemire he is on the professional track and was Amazing to photograph. I’m still having feet envy. He was kind and was so great to work with, I’d say he is a male dancer to keep an eye out for.
DA: Other than your camera, what is the one piece of equipment that you could not live without?
AJ: Right now I am living for the Nifty Fifty lens and also my Nalgene, I think it is super important to stay hydrated.
DA: If you could have the perfect photoshoot…who and where?
AJ: I really just want adventure in my photography. I would love to travel outside of the US and do some photoshoots. I have this dream of shooting in all 7 continents, that would be awesome to do.
DA: Any advice to help dancers relax when having a photoshoot?
AJ: Definitely take the time stretch and warm up and hey pop some headphones or bust out a blue tooth and put on some tunes that inspire you.
DA: How can someone get in touch with you?
DA: What is the best place to view your work online?
My Photography insta:
So glad we got a chance to talk to AJ. Can’t wait to see what the future holds for him. Be sure to check out his gallery below. Leave a comment and feel free to share his story 🙂
Dance On!! – DanceAdvisor.com 🙂