We had the good fortune of connecting with Carrilee Fox and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Carrilee, what is the most important factor behind your success?
There’s a quote by Author, James Clear that I live by: “If you never copy best practices, you’ll have to repeat all the mistakes yourself. If you only copy best practices, you’ll always be one step behind the leaders”. I am constantly placing myself in environments whereby I learn from who I believe are some of the best photographers in the industry. I have a great passion for learning and growing and I love meeting others who are extremely successful. My success is attributed to my mentors and my teachers and quite honestly, those who have graciously allowed me to photograph them….even when I barely knew what the settings on my camera meant. I joined a specific photography group on facebook last year. This group has highly successful photographers from all over the world sharing their knowledge and helping others to be just as successful as they are. I am blown away at their talent and their willingness to impart their factors behind their achievements as well as how they run their business and what tools they utilize. I would encourage anyone looking to grow in their business…as intimidating as it can be…to reach out to others who they admire and ask to learn from them. Surprisingly, leaders are eager to convey keys to their success.Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I believe what sets me apart from others is my ability to help the person feel comfortable and confident in front of my camera therefore capturing their true personality and authentic self. As I mentioned before, if you want to excel at your craft, learn from the best. If you want to take truly memorable and moving photographs, study the pictures of famous photographers. Some of the most beloved photographers are deceased, but some are still delighting us with their photographs. Many of my photographs are intimate, and describe the subject. You can feel who they are. I’m simply unafraid of falling in love with the people I photograph. Getting to where I am today, has been such an incredible ride. Certainly not easy but I have no complaints. I believe the key to overcoming challenges is to forego the fear. There is so much to be learned in the art of photography and from those who inspire us.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh what a fun week we would have! I’m passionate about great food and those who excel in their craft! As you know, being a photographer, we’d definitely take time to stop along our way for some impromptu photo shoots! Brunch would be on the itinerary at what I believe offers the best in town! Richardson’s Cuisine of New Mexico! For a quick trip to New Mexico without leaving Central Phoenix, they dish up hearty New Mexican-inspired fare, that is absolutely fabulous! You can eat in the dining room with its cozy oversized booths or, enjoy your meal on their beautiful outside viga-covered patio. Sometime during the week we would visit Prescott. For an entirely different environment and change of scenery, heading north is always such a great time. Being the photographer that I am, there’s also so many fun photo opportunities along the way and while there as well! Lunch at Lazy G Brewhouse is a must! They offer some of the best craft beer and food to go with. Plus, there’s live music in their “park” on the weekends! A trip to downtown Phoenix would be on our agenda and visiting Angel’s Trumpet Ale House is included. I offer photoshoot sessions around downtown atop parking garages, down mural-adorned alleys and along tower lined streets. I love the environment and scenery it provides and it’s like no other area in the valley to explore. Angel’s Trumpet Ale House is smack dab in the middle of it all! It’s a hip scratch kitchen serving elevated bar food with a fun twist and a big menu (31-tap rotation!) of craft beer comparable to none! Everything on the menu is homemade down to the darn cannot-be-missed signature pop-tarts! With one of the best patios in town, their dog-friendly courtyard offers a great place to relax and even play games! We are big fans and frequent attendees! If you haven’t been, you gotta go! Guaranteed you’ll be one of their biggest fans, too! Looking for some caffeine? Lux on Central is the only way to go! It’s a rustic cafe serving an ever-changing menu which also offers wine, beer and cocktails. You’ll love their vibe! While my husband and I love a great mid-century modern look, Modern Manor, a vintage, modern showroom offers some of the best finds around. And guess what…they now have a fantastic restaurant inside called Valentine! Then, here’s the kicker…in the back of the store, there’s a studio/event place! We’d most definitely take advantage of a photo shoot experience unlike no other!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Yes! Beverly Trainer Williams and Lloyd Fox. Beverly is a photographer and owner / publisher of Senior Year Magazine. She has been instrumental in the success of my business and her constant encouragement, guidance, mentorship and support is beyond incredible. My husband, Lloyd Fox, is nothing short of fabulous. He’s my biggest fan and cheerleader and his unwavering support has given me so much confidence. He believes I can do anything I put my mind to and always selfishly, champions my ideas as if they. had been his own. I must acknowledge my clients and those who graciously placed themselves in front of my lens even at early stages in my career. For without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today!