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Lotus Photography

Apr 10, 2015 | Published by | Leave your thoughts

We recently caught up with two of Montreal’s most talented photographers, Jay Santos and Elisa S Parado, to find out more about their business, Lotus Photography.

Sociale: Tell us about yourselves! How and why did you start Lotus Photography? My name is Jay Santos, and I am the co-owner of Lotus Photography along with my girlfriend, Elisa Parado. Together, we officially started our Lotus Photography business in April of 2014, but have been practicing photography since 2011. Since the beginning, we had always been intrigued by photography, following some of our favorite photographers from around the world, learning the theory behind photography, and having fun taking photos at casual events and family gatherings. So in 2014, we decided to officially team up and start covering events professionally.

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Sociale: What are some of the services you offer? Lotus Photography specializes in wedding photography and event coverage such as fundraisers, corporate events, baptisms, fashion shows, and high-end parties.

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Sociale: How would you describe your style of photography? We like to describe it as colorful and vibrant. We love to bring out the beautiful colors in the scene and really have it catch your eye and stand out. Another thing about our style that we take pride in is the ability to capture beautiful candid photos of people being themselves and simply being happy. At every event that we cover, we make sure to always be observing people. We look for people who are genuinely having a great time, and try to capture those candid smiles and laughs from a distance without having people even know that we are watching. We love to capture a person’s essence, not by posing them, but by capturing them simply being themselves.

Sociale: Out of all of the different types of photography, what made you decide to specialize in Wedding photography? What we love most about wedding photography is the emotional aspect of it. What’s different about it from other types of photography, like fashion photography for example, is that you are photographing people showing their love for eachother, being themselves, and showing their true emotions. We get to capture people’s true essence during one of the happiest days of their lives. There’s something very fulfilling about capturing a photo that is priceless. A moment that they will be able to remember for the rest of their lives thanks to you. Quite simply, we love to capture people in love.

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Sociale: What have been some of your favourite past events that you’ve photographed and why? We have covered a variety of events, but our most memorable event would have to be the Halloween party in Ottawa hosted by Khloe Kardashian and Scott Disick from Keeping Up With The Kardashians. There were also appearances by Brody Jenner who was the guest DJ for the night, and NBA all-star, Denis Rodman. The night was just surreal, hanging out on stage with the celebrities, being just a couple of feet away from them and even getting to talk with some of them. That feeling of being on stage in front of thousands of screaming fans was an experience that we will never forget. We got to capture some really fun shots of the celebrities along with the crowd who was full of great Halloween costumes. Ever since the event, we knew that there was the slight chance of us being on the Keeping Up With The Kardashians show since we had signed a waiver and saw cameras following Khloe and Scott, so there was a lot of anticipation, wondering if we would make it on TV. A few months go by, and we find out that the episode featuring the Halloween event would be airing that weekend. The night of the airing, we were getting very excited to see the show, when all of a sudden, we received a few notifications on Facebook and Instagram from friends tagging us in a preview clip for that night’s episode. So we played the clip, and to our surprise, we actually made it on the show! We remember seeing the clip in our car, and we were literally screaming when we saw ourselves. When we started our business, we had set a lot of ambitious goals, but never in a million years did we expect to be on a show that we have been watching for many seasons! l8

Sociale: What do you love most about having your own business and working for yourself? The best thing about it is having full creative control over the work you deliver. There is no boss looking over your shoulder, telling you what to do or how to do things. How good or how bad your work turns out is 100% under your control. So we love that our success lies solely on our shoulders and no one else’s. We love working hard to accomplish our goals, and knowing that our success or failure is completely on us. We aren’t trying to copy anyone else, or be something that isn’t genuine. We are ourselves, with our own opinions and style, and work very hard at developing our craft. There will always be the business side of a photography business, but at the end of the day our work will always be about the art.

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Sociale: What are your top 3 tips when choosing a professional photographer for a Wedding? First, make sure that you connect on a personal level with the photographer. This is important because the bride and groom spend more time with their photographer than anyone else on that day, so you want to make sure that you have great chemistry and feel comfortable around your photographer(s). Second tip is to choose a photographer whose style fits your taste. Every photographer has their own style, and every bride and groom have their own taste. Some like bright and vibrant photos, some like the vintage look, some like dark artistic photos, some like a more formal style, and some prefer a more candid journalistic approach. There are so many wedding photographers in Montreal, each with their own style, so take your time to shop around and check out their portfolios and websites. Our last tip to brides shopping for a photographer is that you really get what you pay for. Probably besides the birth of a child, your wedding day will likely be the biggest day of your life. The day itself goes by so fast, and you miss a lot of things that go on throughout the day, and after the day is over, all you have are the photos. You want to have photos that you can look back on 10 years from that day, or pass down to your children, and be able to relive those moments and remember the feelings you had that day. Choosing a photographer is a very important investment, so we highly advise that people do not overlook the importance of investing in the right photographers. We have many people tell us that they have a very small budget so they unfortunately cannot book us, and many of them have even gotten back to us saying that they wish they had invested more in a proper photographer rather than having one of their friends cover the event for very cheap. Deciding on the right photographer is basically investing in memories of one of the most important days of your life, so make it count!

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Sociale: What is your most valuable advice for entrepreneurs? If you really love and are passionate about your work, make sacrifices. Sacrifice those nights out with friends, those extra hours of sleep, those few hours that you usually take to unwind and relax. Instead, work hard, and never stop. We strongly believe that there is no substitute for hard work. If you want to be the best that you can be, that takes many hours practicing your craft, and hours upon hours of research, contacting clients, and editing. If you don’t fully commit yourself, you will never achieve your potential.

Sociale: How can people get in contact with you and learn more about your services? People can contact us by email at jay.lotus.photography@gmail.com and elisa.lotus.photography@gmail.com. They can also view our work on our website at www.lotusphotos.ca and our facebook fan page at www.facebook.com/lotusphotoscanada. We also love to meet new people and connect on facebook, so you can search for our personal facebook accounts by looking up Jay Santos and Elisa S Parado.

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