We had the good fortune of connecting with Brianna Anderson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brianna, as a parent, what do you feel is the most meaningful thing you’ve done for them?
I have the greatest privilege of being a mom to two incredible kids, both now into their teen years, and seemingly growing up before I can blink! The single most important thing I have done as a parent in terms of the impact of our kids, is praying for them. My husband and I have spent the last 15 years praying over our son and daughter, from everything from their physical and mental health, to the the day-to-day issues. We pray about big decisions that need to be made, we pray as a family at meals and when their is a family need, and we make it a very standard, everyday practice in our home. I think most parents would agree, that half the time I’m not confident in what I’m doing as a mother! Especially in these teenage years, I am constantly doubting myself and wondering how I could have handled something better. Balancing raising my kids and running my own business is a careful dance, but praying for my kids, and having them see and know that their parents are praying for them every day, is the most lasting impact on their lives that I could ever give them.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My artistic side came as quite a surprise to me. I have my Bachelors of Science in Nursing, and worked as a NICU nurse for 12 years before deciding to take a break form nursing and be home with my kids more. I learned fairly quickly that I felt a bit restless when I wasn’t working, and that I needed an outlet, so I invested more deeply into my photography business that I had already started. But something definitely started to change for me. I felt much more passionate about capturing women in a more natural and intimate way than I had been previously shooting. I was inspired by perfume ads, Vogue ads, music, and a much more mature aesthetic than I had previously in my work. I wanted to evoke much more emotion and movement, and I wanted my girls to be comfortable letting go of themselves a bit during their sessions. It started to become less about pretty and posed portraits, and more about movement and emotion. My colors got darker, the exposure was a bit deeper, and the overall vibe became a bit more grainy and soft. But I fell in love with it. It was a huge risk and change from the light and bright and airy aesthetic that I had been previously cultivating. I worried that maybe a darker, more moody and edgy vibe might cause me to lose my client base. But the opposite happened, and it started to become more of what drew women to my work. At my core, I am a woman who loves her friendships. I am a girls-girl, and always will be. So I form a very quick bond with whomever I’m shooting, and they trust me and allow me to pose them and move them in a certain way to achieve that look. Most of my clients can’t believe its them when they see their images!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Hands-down favorite place to eat for a night out in town, is Second Story in old town Scottsdale. Its a tiny little place tucked away upstairs, but it offers the best vibe for a date night or small group dinner with friends. Its dimly lit, and has a very 20’s/30’s speakeasy feel to it. Theres good music, gorgeous decor, and delicious food and cocktails. For drinks, I’m torn between two favorite places- we’d have to visit Undertow in Scottsdale, as well as Honor Amongst Thieves in Phoenix. UnderTow is a full experience! Its nothing like the crowded bar scene, it is small and quaint, with seating for only about 30 people. The cocktails are all Polynesian inspired, and the decor and build of the space will make you feel like you are on a dark pirate ship. Trust me, you have to go. We’d most definitely hang out at Saguaro Lake for an afternoon- its easily the prettiest lake in the Valley. The tall canyons and colors of the mountains surrounding the lake are my absolute favorite. Speaking of water, one of our family’s favorite weekend activities is to ride our bikes down the Hayden greenbelt from Shea Blvd, all the way down to Marguerite lake for some fishing and a picnic dinner on the grass. Our son has caught some pretty impressive catfish in there! 🙂
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My success in starting and building my maternity photography brand would not have been nearly as enjoyable or smooth without my constant cheerleader, and maker of all things possible- my husband John. He scouts locations with me, praises my accomplishments when I’m too hard on myself, and works incredibly hard to make our working schedules possible.
All images credited to Brianna Anderson Photography