Meet Matthew Specht, Portrait Photographer from Pearland, Texas.
You may have noticed Matt around the community; not only is he a photographer and avid ShootProof user, he is also our first Community Peer Moderator. Matt will be around to help answer questions and get you pointed in the right direction. Read on to meet Matt and see how you can be a featured photographer in the ShootProof Community!
Matt, how were you introduced to photography? Why did you decide to pursue it professionally?
I didn't start taking photos until digital cameras first came out, this caught my interest and I just started experimenting. This sparked something inside that turned into a hobby that quickly grew out of control. About 9 years ago I wanted to take the next step and started shooting professionally, I am still learning and pushing myself harder than ever. I've never been so passionate about something in my life than I am about photography.
What is the image that you’re most proud of creating?
Why are you most proud of that image?
This shot represents my decision to go "all-in" to create my vision. The idea I had for this shot really needed a special environment to come together, so I decided to go to Death Valley to capture this image. I am very happy with how things turned out and it really gave me the desire to step outside my comfort zone to bring my ideas to life.
What is something photography or business related you've learned that has impacted you recently?
I've always focused on portrait photography; however I've still shot some product and landscape photos as well. My business/brand wasn't very focused on what I wanted to do. During the WPPI Expo, I had the opportunity to listen to Lindsay Adler speak. She mentioned about the benefit of focusing your brand on the type of clients you wish to work with. Since then I've changed my brand to focus on my portrait and fashion style. She was quick to point out that it doesn't mean you shouldn't do other styles of work, but that your brand should reflect the type of work you want to do. I feel like my identity and brand now represent who I am as a photographer much better than it did before.
Share an image that has an incredible story behind it:
Now tell us the incredible story of the image!
This story may not seem that incredible to most; however, it is incredible to me personally. I have two daughters who love being involved in my photography, they always ask if they can do a video in my studio, etc. I remember one day that my oldest daughter came to me and asked if I would take her picture. I was like "of course, what are we going to do?" She became so excited and said she knew what she wanted. She came back dressed in this vintage-wintery dress and she did all the posing, facial expressions, everything! This was her concept and she had the vision to do it. I love this photo on so many levels!
Have you ever done a social media photography challenge? Which one?
Other than the daily photo challenges, the only real social media challenge I've done is a light painting challenge. I am part of a photography group called "Behind the Lens", a few members went out and did some light painting and challenged my friend and I to do the same. The fun part about it was that I've never done light painting before and we just went out and winged it. There is definite room for improvement, but we had a good time experimenting and learning. See the image below:
Is there anything else important, fun, wacky, or practical that you'd like to share?
Just remember that your journey is not the same as the people around you. Don't compare yourself to them, the only person you should be competing with is the version of you from yesterday. Are you a better version of yourself than you were yesterday? That is how you grow, wake up every day and try to be a better version of yourself. Have fun with your journey, where you are today is where you wished you would be 10 years ago.
Where can we see more of your work? *some images may be NSFW*
Matt’s feature was submitted through Featured Photog Fridays! Click the link to submit your work for a future Feature Friday!