Business Name: Ardee Chua Photography
Where are you based out of? Nashville, TN
Are you currently a part-time or full-time photographer? Part-time
What is your predominant photographic specialization? Weddings
What camera(s) do you currently shoot with? Canon 5d Mk4 and 5d Mk3
How would you define your style?
My photography can be defined as lifestyle. They are candid but I give direction so that my clients look their best. My background is in street photography so it’s a bit raw and documentary. I appreciate the aesthetics of proper composition that you would find in classical works but I understand that emotion trumps everything.
What motivated you to become a photographer?
My daughter Kylee was growing up too fast (she’s 14 now) and I wanted to capture every moment. When she started middle school, she was suddenly too cool to pose for me so I started taking pictures wherever I traveled. I found myself taking pictures of people and loving it. The Golden Gate Bridge doesn’t make San Francisco; rather, the people that lived in San Francisco make San Francisco.
My neighbor is an accomplished wedding photographer and started to ask me to second shoot weddings for her. From there I was hooked on photographing weddings.
What is it that you try to convey with your work?
I want to convey the emotion and “soul” of the occasion. I want the viewer to feel like they are there. I want those who attended and see my photographs later to remember the smells, tastes, sounds, and what they were feeling.
How do you accomplish that
I prefer to shoot with wide-angle lenses; this forces you to shoot close. When you shoot close, you have to engage with the subject and be part of it.
Have you had a photographer inspire your work, and if so, who and why?
There are many photographers that have influenced me and continue to mentor me directly or indirectly.
Roberto Valenzuela taught me to be intentional and to understand the science and math behind posing and light. Jerry Ghionis rapport with his clients is one to look up to. I give each wedding party a headshot in the same manner that Peter Hurley does.
What is your most memorable accomplishment so far in your photography career?
My best accomplishments are seeing photographers that I’ve taught find success.
In a wedding a few weeks ago, my daughter graduated from being an assistant to being a full-fledged second photographer. She did great and I was a super proud dad.
What is one thing you have learned during your career?
Don’t be afraid to collaborate with others and share your ‘secrets’. It’s natural to not share but this leads one to think in scarcity. It’s not only negative but also self-damning.
Find new photographers and mentor them. Find photographers you admire and connect with them. The more you share your ‘secrets’, the more you are able to learn new things and grow your art.
Which Photographer Supply Company products do you currently use?
I use Photographer Supply Company’s engraved wooden 8GB USB drives. They look great packaged inside the matching wooden boxes.
When possible, I find every opportunity to hand deliver the finished product. Clients always have the best reactions. It sets the right mood for when they view the photographs.
How have Photographer Supply Company products helped your business?
I have worked hard to be better at my art. I had invested to be part of great networks of professionals. I maintain a clean website, invest in good business cards, etc. but the finished product would be what the customer ultimately holds in their hands after the session.
Products from Photography Supply Company give me good consistency, a standard for perfection, and confidence.