Small Details and Tiny Moments: Photographer Elizabeth LaDuca
Tell us about yourself.
I’m a fine art wedding and editorial photographer, based in New England and available for travel! My medium of choice is traditional film, which I love for a whole variety of reasons including the beautiful way it tells the story of my couples’ day in a way that feels honest and natural. I’m passionate about spending time outdoors, and can often be found hiking with my husband and dog on any weekends I’m not at weddings. In addition to weddings, I’m passionate about supporting other creative businesses with beautiful editorial photography, as well as working with local chefs and farmers to bring their stories to life.
When did you start taking photos?
I fell in love with photography when I received my first film camera at age 15. My photography journey has taken a winding road since then; I spent many hours in darkrooms in high school, then attended Rochester Institute of Technology to pursue a degree in Fine Art Photography. I also became enamored with graphic design while studying, and when I graduated I spent a number of years working with large, multi-national software companies as a branding lead and designer. Photography remained a large part of my passion, with much of my time spent working on my own baking blog. When I photographed my first wedding, I knew that was it for me; it was (and still is) the perfect blend of emotional portraits, beautiful candid moments and gorgeous details. I feel so fortunate to be entrusted with my client’s incredible days, and love that I can bring my passion for both photography and design to the way I approach creating visual stories.
How do you approach photography?
My goal with any commission or personal project is to tell a story in a way that feels honest and organic. There is so much beauty in small details and tiny moments that can get lost in the busyness of everyday life; I want to create a collection of photographs that allow pause, and provide the ability to revisit a moment and remember how it truly felt to be there. I seek to be invisible in my photographs; the viewer shouldn’t feel my presence, rather, they should be able to see the subject, their emotions and each moment clearly and simply.
My goal with any commission or personal project is to tell a story in a way that feels honest and organic.
How would you describe your work?
Clean, simple, natural, emotive.
What made you fall in love with film photography?
The first time I watched an image rise out of the paper in a darkroom tray, I was hooked. I don’t have the opportunity to develop and print much of my work myself anymore, but there was something so tactical and magical about the process from the very start, that it peaked my interest and has been a driving force in my work ever since. I continue to choose film as my primary medium as it best suits the way I see the world. It allows me to be fully present as I create and document, always looking through the lens and anticipating moments, rather than watching them appear on a screen. It enables me to be more aware of my surroundings, and more intentional about the moments I document. The colors and way that film renders light, texture and tone are so beautiful, and I live for the days I get my scans back from the lab. I fall in love all over again each time I see all the love, light and beauty flooding my inbox and taking me right back to a specific time and celebration.
What other forms of art influence your photography work?
I absolutely love painting (I went through a pretty long phase where I wanted to become a traditional oil painter), and the way that to make a subject come to life, you have to be truly intentional with color, tone and rendering light. To me, it’s very similar to making a film photograph! I’m very inspired by the Dutch Master era of painting, as well as many other more modern painters. I also find interior design to be really inspiring; a lot of my work is about creating a sense of space and place, and I find that looking at interior design work really inspires me to look for lifestyle details while photographing.
Where do you find inspiration?
I find being in nature to be a great inspiration for me. I’m drawn to quiet, vast spaces and the textures and colors that occur outdoors. That said, there’s a lot of inspiration to be found just out in the world grabbing coffee and walking around a new city. I love to travel, so I find being out of my element to be really inspiring. A lot of my inspiration for a wedding day come from the couple themselves. I am always amazed by how deeply my couples love each other and their families; that’s the best inspiration of all!
That said, there’s a lot of inspiration to be found just out in the world grabbing coffee and walking around a new city.
What work are you most proud of?
Any work that resonates with my couples and their families, or with my branding clients. It means the world to me when someone tells me that I captured their day in a way that truly feels like them. That makes me exceedingly proud, and feel like I did my job well.