Friday, June 29, 2012

Feature Interview - Life Is Art: Cassoday Harder

 In the last if the series we have the beautiful and inspiring Cassoday Harder!

1. Fill me in on your background, where are you from and how did you get in to photography?

I'm eighteen and from Kansas, in the united states. I have lived here my whole life. I have been intrigued with photography and cameras for years, I have always enjoyed looking at the old photography albums at my grandma's house. about three years ago i picked up my mom's camera and started playing around with self-portraits (I knew very little about photography at the time). I started really liking it, especially the way the sunlight looked in the pictures. I live in a rural place with lots of pretty locations, so finding locations or pretty light was never really a struggle for me. I started taking pictures basically every day after I came home from school, and I began to improve. I also happen to be blessed with five beautiful sisters, and they are always helpful for.


2. Who has influenced you the most in terms of photography?

My mother, my sisters, and anyone I am very close to. All of my photographer friends have influenced me too, in particular my best friend, Johanna. they stuck with me when there was a point when I wanted to quit, and I'm so thankful for that.


3. What is your favourite style of photography (Self portraiture? Fashion? Documentary)?

All styles are beautiful, but my favorite is self-portraiture. it's so personal and raw, and the most difficult type of photography, in my opinion. I really admire photographers who take a lot of self-portraits, I think it takes a lot to be able to do that!


4. What is your process when taking photo's, from getting ideas to editing?

I don't have a set process. I get ideas in different ways, sometimes from a book i read or a conversation I had with someone. sometimes when I get an idea I'll write it down, or draw it out, but usually I keep it bouncing around in my head. Sometimes I'll go out with my camera with no idea in my mind- I've gotten some of the best pictures that way. I think it's the best when you don't really have a set process; it keeps your ideas fresh and alive.

5. What are your tools of the trade?

Imagination and sunlight and any camera that requires film.

6. Where do you hope to go with your photography?

Anywhere and everywhere. I have huge dreams to travel to all kinds of beautiful places on this globe. I believe that my photography can take me anywhere I want to go. someday, I hope to be able to throw some clothes and my camera in a suitcase, hop on a plane, and go wherever I please. Something else I hope to do someday is learn to use a darkroom, and maybe even own one of my own!


7. Why do you think people are drawn to photography?

Photography is all about emotions, and telling stories. Photography is a beautiful way to release emotions. I'm a pretty emotional girl, quite honestly, and taking pictures is a nice, positive way to blow off some steam, and let people inside my head for a moment. photographers can tell beautiful stories, just as beautiful as the ones you read in old books.


8. What draws you to a particular model? What do you look for in a model?

Beauty and poise.


9. Who are some other photographers you admire?

Nirrimi, Tamara Lichtenstien, Tess Mayer, and many others.


10. What is your best tip to taking a striking photo?

Lighting, lighting, lighting. there is nothing more beautiful than a photo filled with pretty light!


11. Your photos seem to incorporate your surroundings and the elements, is this a big part of your style?

Yes, I think so. it's nice to live in a place that has so many locations available by just walking a few feet out the door.

12. What is your favourite photo taken by another photographer?

This changes so often, but I love this one right now!


 I actually love every single photo on her photostream, it's all so pretty and delicate.

13. What is your favourite photo you have taken? 


It was a hard choice, but I think it's this one right now. it's somewhat of a sentimental photo, and I love the lighting!

14. What are some of your favourite films, books and musicians?

I don't enjoy watching movies too much, but I think my favorite would have to be Forrest Gump. It makes me tear up every time. as far as books go, I love them, particularly old ones. A few of my favorite books are 'The sun also rises' by Hemingway, 'The great gatsby' by Scott Fitzgerald, & 'The catcher in the rye' by Salinger. My favorite musician is John Mayer, I love any music that's soft and pretty really.


15. What has been your biggest achievement so far with your photography?

Every photo is an achievement for me; I feel like I am improving with every snap of my camera.


16. Do you think it’s hard to be original in photography? How do you keep your ideas original and fresh?

Yes, I think it's difficult. especially when you are on Flickr and see so many inspiring pictures every day. When I go out to take photos, I try to clear my mind, relax and see where it takes me.

17. Which photographer do you think I should interview next and why?

Tess Mayer, if you haven't already. Her work is beautiful!

18. Do you often change a lot of the original photo in Photoshop?

I don't really believe in the manipulation of photos, but yes, I enhance the colors, and do other touching-up as well.


19. Do you think you have an original style that is you own?

When I first starting taking photos I really struggled with having my own personal style, because I felt that my style changed with each photo I took. I still struggle with it today, but I believe I am beginning to find a path I want to travel with my photography. As I grow older and improve, I hope to one day have a style that is all my own.


20. Do you prefer studio or location?

Location location location! Studio pictures can be beautiful, but there is something so magical about the use of natural light and pretty locations.


21. If you could photograph any person alive or dead who would it be and why?

Photographing the ones you love is the best! But I'd probably take pictures of James Franco, he's just so good looking

find the others

22. You don't seem to take photos in studios, is this circumstance or preference?

Preference! well, circumstance as well, but I believe that even if I had a studio available to me I would use location much more! I'd like to try a studio sometime in the future but I think I will always love natural lighting the most.


23. Give us the skinny, what's the next project you've got coming up?

I'm thinking of starting a 365 project or a 52 weeks project sometime (no promises!)


24. Which actor would play you in the film of your life?

The first person that comes to mind is Cameron Diaz, I don't know why!


25. What did you want to grow up to be when you were a kid?

I wanted to be a teacher up until about three years ago.

Thank you so much Cassoday!

I implore you to check out more of here amazing work on her Flickr and her Facebook!



  1. I love Cassoday's work! Thanks for interviewing her :)

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