Photographer of the Month Interview : Yara Khalaf / Sincerely Yara Photographie


We are pleased to announce Yara Khalaf – as October Photographer of the Month. See more of her amazing work on her Facebook!


What inspired you to use Woodland Albums? I was inspired by the Legend album. It showed up on my Facebook one day and I was so drawn to its elegance and timeless quality! I love all of the albums offered and the Legend album is my absolute favorite. It is so unique and special.


What is the first thing that comes into your mind when you think of Woodland Albums? The first thing that comes to mind is how classic but one of a kind the designs are. Like I said above, they are timeless and the perfect keepsake for anyone’s special story.


Share with us your favorite Woodland album and why. What materials/ options do you choose? My favorite Woodland album would be the Legend album. I absolutely love that it’s wrapped in soft leather and looks like a piece of art on it’s own. I choose the dark brown color and the velvet paper. It is stunning and my clients love it as much as I do!


What type of clients do you think will enjoy these albums? My wedding clients love the Legend albums!


Any suggestions for Woodland Albums? I love the direction that Woodland Albums is headed and love the unique qualities to your designs.


How long have you been a photographer? I have been a photographer for 2 years!


How did you discover your passion for photography? I was in Paris, France on my honeymoon with my husband. I always loved taking pictures and documenting my experiences with photographs but something about that city was just so magical. I took thousands of photos on my phone that trip, and the whole time I wished I had a better camera to capture the true beauty of the city. My husband saw how much I enjoyed it and encouraged me to pursue a dream of mine. So, I borrowed a Canon Rebel, and after endless hours of research, creative visions, and practice Sincerely Yara came about. A year ago, I had my sweet son and he is definitely used to having the camera in his face! I mean I have the perfect model right at home. Being a photographer has also allowed me to be a stay at home mom and that to me is the best job in the world and so important to me.


How do you define your style? I would define my style as timeless, classic, and transportive in a sense of it allows you to re-live that never fading moment over and over again.


What would we find in your camera bag for a typical shoot? I take everything with me! 3 lenses, 2 camera bodies, 2 flashes, lots of batteries, holdfast camera straps, a polaroid camera and film, a sandwich bag for some effects, a mirror for reflections, a small sewing kit, and other random items!


Your favorite lens? My favorite lens would be my Sigma 35 art. It is perfect in every way.


Share with us your favorite image and why. Do you see the people standing by the large open ocean? The vast and bold sea, with it’s crashing waves? The small innocent people just living life? This photo is a reminder that it is a great big world and we are just a small part of it. It is a reminder to stay humble but to also put fear aside. I love the colors and tones of the sea. The textures of the ocean and the transition of the dark and moody waves into the light and bright sandy path.


When you are shooting—how much of it is instinctual versus planned? Well, I would say that most, if not all is instinctual. I always try to plan, at least the basic stuff, but once I get to a shoot and get to know my clients, it all becomes instinctual. They definitely inspire my creativity. Everyone is so different and special, so it’s hard to plan out how it will go.


What are some of your rules of thumb in photography? After a shoot, I like to post a sneak peak. I randomly choose a few photos that catch my eye, edit those and post. However, I don’t look at the rest of the photos in detail until the next day! I’m my own worst critic so I give myself a day to let the shoot sink in, and surprisingly I like my photos a lot more the day after! Also, when in doubt just click! I say take the shot anyways, because it could be your absolute favorite photo of the night!


Whose work, photography or otherwise, are you inspired by and why? I am blown away and inspired by Jose Villa. His work is incredible and completely breathtaking. Every photo I have seen of his has left me with some kind of feeling. His work is so soft and serene and definitely leaves a lasting memory.


What is it you like the most about being a photographer? I love my job. I love the sweet people I get to meet along the way and I love that I get to capture their special moments and present them with endless memories. Weddings are my favorite because there are so many raw moments and emotions that are so visible in the photographs. I will admit, I cry at all the speeches. I love the beautiful bond between a couple at their engagement session. I love the innocence and purity of a newborn and kids session. I love the different cultures and traditions I get to experience. I love the joy and inside jokes shared at a family session. I love getting to spend as much time as possible with my son. I also love chasing the light and living in Arizona definitely makes that easy!


If you weren’t a photographer what would you be? If I wasn’t a photographer I would be something in the fashion world! It would be so much fun!


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