We had the good fortune of connecting with Kim Belverud and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kim, as a parent, what do you feel is the most meaningful thing you’ve done for your children?
I think the most important thing I’ve done as a parent is teach my children about perseverance and gratitude by modeling it for them. We are faced with so many different obstacles in life and at times, it’s easy to feel deflated and want to give up. I’ve felt like this with my business, but when I focus on my goals and remind myself the reasons for pursuing it, I continue to persevere beyond the hurdles. I try not to hide my vulnerabilities to my children, so they directly hear and see what perseverance looks like for me. And when we are faced with tough times, not only is perseverance important, but so is gratitude. Even amidst a global pandemic, I look for things that I am grateful for, both big and small. It shifts one’s perspective and helps us feel through the pain and sadness of the tough times. By reminding them of what I am grateful for on a regular basis, my hope is that it has a positive long-term impact on how they view life.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My art has definitely evolved over the years. When I was a hobbyist photographer, I loved capturing landscapes and nature. Then I started incorporating my kids into those landscapes and nature scenes. Those images started getting noticed and complimented by friends and family which led to requests for their own family photo sessions. Obtaining a larger portfolio of family images eventually allowed me to open my full-time family photography business. The journey to get to where I am today wasn’t always easy. When I took photos of my kids, I shot in a more lifestyle or documentary mode, but I struggled in translating that when I had photo sessions with client families. My sessions would result in many traditionally posed images. I was also trying to identify my own unique voice and style in the way I shot and edited images. I found that I was drawn to warmth, movement, and authentic emotion. Shooting posed images lacked those elements. I knew I needed to learn how I could have a session with families I didn’t know and immediately create a sense of calm and comfort in order to bring out authentic moments between them. Depending on the session, I still grab those posed images for my clients, but I try to keep them to a minimum so that I can focus on capturing the heart of their relationships and what’s meaningful about them. One of the things that sets me apart as an artist is being able to shoot multiple genres. To this day, I still have a passion to capture landscapes and nature images, and as such, that genre of work is available for purchase in a local gallery, MK Envision, as well as online. Having the opportunity to hone my skills in multiple genres helps me prevent burnout and allows me to have personal projects that keep my creative juices flowing.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If my best friend were visiting the area, there probably wouldn’t be enough time to hit all the places I’d love to take her! Imagining her visit was pre-Coronavirus times, we would eat at different restaurants, visit beaches, hike trails, and have fun traveling all over the county. We would hit Balboa Park and visit the museums and the Japanese Friendship Garden, and if it were summer, I’d make sure to go on a Friday afternoon to be treated to all the Food Trucks. We would eat in Little Italy. I would take her to Juniper and Ivy for drinks and dinner, and then we would hang around that area for other drinks and eventually make our way to Extraordinary Desserts. Another favorite restaurant we would hit is Bankers Hill. We would go out to Sunset Cliffs and enjoy a sunset one evening. For a little adventure and exercise, I would take her to Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve for a good hike and then we would come down to the beach to hang out a bit afterwards. For an additional hike, I’d take her on the 8-mile hike to visit Potato Chip Rock. We both love to dance, so we would take a couple hip hop classes at Culture Shock Dance Center. I would take her up to La Jolla Cove and Windansea for the day, and then shopping and dinner in La Jolla followed by a show at the Comedy Store.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost, my family (in particular, my husband) deserves huge recognition in my success as a photographer. My husband has an interest in photography too and does a lot of research on the technical details and equipment. I’ve had a few different DSLRs and several lenses over the years and he’s been responsible for researching and purchasing them. More than that though, he’s given me the support I’ve needed to start my business and go full time with it. Second, I also owe my success to all of the photographers who’ve traveled before me on this journey and who give back by teaching. I’ve invested time in taking classes both online and in person, and each time I take a class or workshop, I’ve learned valuable information, found incredible inspiration, and formed wonderful relationships that exemplify community over competition. One of the first photography classes I took online was from Skillshare. The class was about shooting in manual mode and from that point on, I never shot in auto mode again. I went on to join Clickin Moms and took additional workshops from Click Photo School. From there, my love of learning all things photography continued to grow and I’ve been taking classes and workshops since then. If I had to pick one book that has also helped inspire and push me to be successful, it is Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. There were so many things in that book that motivated me and made me rethink my own creativity.