My first interview is with Meredith Winn and Kristin Zecchinelli ~ they collaborate on an E-course called NOW YOU Workshops. I met both Meredith and Kristin last year at Camp Shuttersisters here in California. Meredith is such an amazing self portrait photographer and I was excited to finally meet her in person. But being a shy/introvert I was hesitant to just "go up" to her and tell her how awesome she was, but when sitting by her at one of the gatherings I came to find out that she too is an introvert and all this was overwhelming too! I felt immediately connected! Kristin (Maine Momma) was someone I had followed via Flickr and her blog for quiet sometime. Her presence was so warm and friendly and her smile and laughter were contagious! We spent many a night walking down to the beach scheming about "ass capes" and "being awesome". (It was at Camp that I knew I had to make I am awesome. t-shirts:) My friend Kirsten and I and Meredith and Kristen really connected over that weekend. When i found out that they were collaborating, I couldn't of been happier. I just knew whatever they were creating would be fabulous and it is, it truly is!
How did you start collaborating?
Our shared view of photography, how we shoot, how we see forged a natural friendship which led to ideas we wanted to build together as a creative vision for women photographers just like us.
What is it that you collaborate on?
We felt that there was a missing piece for women in the world of photography. In the winter of 2012, we founded NOW YOU Workshops to fill that need and give the control back to women with their cameras as they explore the process of self portraiture.
How long have you been working together?
We began working together with Shutter Sisters back in 2009. For three years we lived very far from each other (Texas and Maine!) after a cross-country move brought us closer in miles, we began gathering weekly to work on our vision for NOW YOU. We found that we worked best in person and could really harness our creative energy this way.
How do you navigate the miles between you?
We make a point to gather once a week at one of our homes (to play and create.) It's a release as well as work, and we feel that this is why our collaboration works so well for us. There is a time to gather ideas and a time to create.
Have you collaborated in the past with others?
Neither of us had collaborated in a business venture before NOW YOU.
How/when did you know this partnership/collaboration was going to work?
It always felt "right" with us just as it did our friendship. We are like-minded and see each other as equals. There's not a sense of competition or a feeling of stress between us, which is key in growing a product or business. As soon as we began dreaming up NOW YOU, the positivity between us told us we were on the right path.
Do you have any words of wisdom for others that want to collaborate but haven’t found the right person?
You'll know when the time is right. We naturally draw people into our lives at certain times for certain reasons. You have to trust that the right time will come and believe that if you're putting your art out there with intention, the door will eventually open. (We believe in the power of the universe!) If you don't have a community around you in real life, seek out your tribe online. Family comes in all shapes and sizes!
Do you see yourselves creating more or something different in the future?
Yes, we are growing our curriculum and courses and plan on expanding Now You as it stretches and blooms into what it wants to become. We are currently writing content for a new class (that will open for registration this fall) and we have a few new classes planned for 2013 too!
Meredith Winn is a freelance writer and photographer. She is from everywhere on any given day; but has found her way home to the western Maine foothills, where she lives off-grid in a yurt with her sweetheart and a trio of boys.
Meredith is drawn to focusing on the emotion and the moment of photography (not just the technical aspect of cameras) this makes her approachable as a teacher to all skill levels of photographers.
Meredith’s creative nonfiction has been published in various magazines including Midwifery Today, Motherverse, Hip Mama, and Literary Mama. Her photography has been on exhibit in TX, VT, and NYC. Her art has been published in a variety of magazines such as JPG Magazine, f-stop magazine, and Emprise Review. Meredith is a contributing editor to Shutter Sisters, a contributing writer and photographer to Taproot Magazine, an Everyday Storyteller at Paper Coterie, and a contributing photographer for Getty Images. You can read her ever elusive and sometimes sporadic blogging at the~spirit~of~the~river.
Kristin Zecchinelli is a photographer, blogger, artist, woman, and mother living on the southern coast of Maine with her small family. Kristin taps into the healing process of photography, exploring her definition of self through self portraiture. She focuses on the real, the now, the moment. Everyday beauty inspires her to pick up her camera.
Kristin’s artistic style draws people to her photography. Her art has been on exhibit at the Fotofest Gallery in Houston, TX. Her images have appeared in the Beckoning of Lovely collection, the Shutter Sisters Picture Hope Project, and the Kirtsy Mom 2.0 video collaboration with well known novelist, Katherine Center. Kristin’s photography has won various awards and honors such as first place in the 2008 Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk Competition for Portland, Maine. Kristin is a contribututing artist for Getty Images, and is featured in the upcoming book, “Hand in Hand: Crafting with Kids”.
if you are part of a collaboration or know of some people who are and think they might want to contribute to my interview series let me know. I'm always looking!