We had the good fortune of connecting with Sarah + Darren Hendry and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sarah + Darren, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
The most substantial risk we’ve ever taken was moving our business, and lives, over to Los Angeles from Scotland. LA, and California in general, is somewhere we’ve always loved to visit, ever since making our first trip over here in 2009. It just resonated with us on so many levels, we can’t really explain! But we always knew living here full-time was going to be a completely different monster, with acquiring work and clients from the other side of the ocean, building up our business SEO from scratch again, making connections with other people within our field, and basically starting afresh and relearning life in a new part of the world (health care and taxes, we’re looking at you mostly!). In our minds, we knew it was now or never, so we took the plunge and started the visa process. Fast forward 2 years later, we know we made the right decision. It’s been a tough, but very rewarding, couple of years.
Please tell us more about your business. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today business-wise. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
Our journey into the world of wedding photography started back in 2011. Prior to that, we were shooting portraits, music shows and architectural stuff (Darren has a degree in Architecture) as a hobby, and we were starting to get slightly bored, not to mention, our lack of creativity was failing us. We randomly put a photography advert on Gumtree (UK version of Craigslist!) and secured our first ever paid booking after a few days, which happened to be a wedding which we were a little surprised about, since that type of photography had never really interested us! Since then, we have never looked back and have been doing wedding photography full-time for 10 years now. Not something we ever planned on doing, but it just worked out like that! It sounds slightly clichéd but getting to travel the world and meet loads of new people along the way has been totally inspiring, and ultimately changed the way we were as people. We have since been evolving creatively everyday and this way of thinking has kept our minds fresh and our eyes wide open, and we’re always looking for new ways to express ourselves with our imagery. Now we have no problem with stepping out of our creative boundaries and changing it up at every wedding or shoot we’re part of. We hope this is the thing that sets us apart from others! One lesson we still need to learn is to quit being so self-conscious about ourselves and our work, and not compare ourselves to our peers and the people within our industry. It’s a tough ol’ thing to master, but we’re slowly getting there!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We have a massive list of places within LA that we love to visit! But if we were ever to show anyone the best bits, and narrow it down ever so slightly, we would do the following: walking around the vibrant and colorful Arts District, chilling on Leo Carrillo Beach, hitting up Pasadena Old Town, seeing what goodies we can find in Bearded Lady’s Mystic Museum, catching the sunset on Mulholland Drive, hiking in Griffith Park, driving in Topanga State Park, shopping at thrift stores in Echo Park, wondering around Angeles National Forest, visiting Six Flags and Universal Studios, and getting killer views of DTLA at Angels Landing in Elysian Park. Our most favorite go-to eateries are Sage, Wild Living Foods, Pura Vita, Little Pine, Crossroads, Under the Sun, Âu Lạc, and Gracias Madre. And occasionally, we like to buy groceries at Erewhon as a treat to ourselves!
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?
Our first shoutout would be to our awesome clients – we wouldn’t be where we are today without them! They trusted us to capture important key events in their lives and for that, we are eternally grateful. We would also like to mention a certain few photography organizations, blogs, and businesses who have either showcased our work, provided us a key opportunity, or given us awards over the years. Namely Rangefinder (https://www.rangefinderonline.com) who named us one of their Top 30 Rising Stars in 2016; Junebug Weddings who included our images in the Top 50 Best Wedding Photos in both 2019 and 2020; and Paul Santos (https://www.paulsantosphotography.com) who asked us to be a part of his photography workshop in 2018, and very kindly supported us during our US visa process.