Personal Creative Shoot | Nicole Spangler Photography

Oct 29, 2018

I have been staring at the blinking cursor, trying to think of what to say about this creative shoot. I decided I am just going to spill my guts. So here goes…

As an artist, I thrive on creativity (don’t we all?). Creating art for my clients is one of the most important things I do. Meeting and working with my clients is inspiring in itself. I love hearing about my clients stories, goals, and dreams. Those things allow me to create their story.

But there is another side to being an artist. Creating art for myself is what keeps me going. Inspires me. And allows me to push myself to become even better.

Personal work can come in many forms, and you never know when inspiration will hit you. If you have read the book Big Magic¬†you know what I mean. As a photographer who owns her own business, I hadn’t created any personal work for a while. I honestly was in a personal creative “rut”.

Then inspiration hit me like a lightning bolt. As I was photographing Chloe’s senior portraits, I was struck by a dress she wore. Honestly, the dress is not ground breaking in any way. In fact her mom questioned whether or not Chloe should even bring it to her session. But when I saw it I knew immediately it had a story (check out Chloe’s blog post HERE). I literally had a vision pop into my head when I saw the dress. It was a photograph by Dorthea Lange titled “Migrant Mother” (see image below).

The photograph above has always moved me. The worry and pain in her eyes have always struck me. I have often thought about how strong the women must have been during the Great Depression not only to survive, but to keep their families safe, fed, and alive. Right away I knew I wanted to photograph a personal project that was inspired by the women of the Great Depression. I asked Chloe if she would be interested in collaborating with me on the project. I explained that this is a personal project and it would be much different than the images I typically shoot. She was on board and it turned out she was very knowledgeable about this time period. I feel this collaboration was meant to be because I was able to communicate the feelings and emotions I wanted to portray and Chloe knew exactly what I meant.

I am hoping these images speak to you and tell a story. A story of hardship, strength, and hope.

Chloe, thank you for allowing me to photograph you for this very personal project.

Thank you Wood’s Edge Apple Orchard for allowing us to photograph at your orchard. You are always so kind to me when I visit.



“STRENGTH” by Nicole Spangler Photography: