Friday, July 29, 2011

Meet Jenna Stoller

(jenna stoller)
How do photographers work with their spouses and make their business and home life successful?  

This is a question I am sure many of you, like me, have wondered.  Most husband and wife photography teams make it look so easy and fun, and Jenna and Andy Stoller are no exception.

According to Jenna Stoller, of Andy & Jenna Photo Design, being specific on each of your duties is key to a happy marriage and successful business!
“I would recommend knowing what each person is in charge of. That way you both are a boss in some sort of way,” says Jenna.
Jenna takes care of most of the shooting and Andy handles the business side of things.  Together they make up one great photography team!

Below is an interview with Jenna.  Be sure to check out her website,, for more inspiration! 

Tell me a little about you, your family, etc....
Well, I’ve been married to Andy for six years. He is my best friend and understands me to the core, which I absolutely love. He’s incredibly supportive of my photography and other crazy entrepreneurial ideas. We have two boys. Crew is three and a half and is “full of life” which means he’s exhausting but very loveable. Ridge is two and is sensitive and sweet. He is also our silly one. Our newest addition to the family is our little bundle of PINK. We have a 3-week-old girl named Saylor. So far she is a great baby and is really cute (I promise my mommy goggles aren’t on).  I can’t believe that we have a family of five already. I feel like I was just 16 yesterday.

How did you get into photography? 
I can’t say I was one of those people who has always loved photography and was into film and everything like that. I’m only 25 so although I had film camera’s as a child, I was never into that creatively. I was always snapping pictures though but really started loving it when I got a job doing the photo editing for a local photographer. I learned a lot there and it really gave me the bug.

How long have you been in the business?
I kind of crept into business after I had Crew. I probably didn’t do everything the right way, but it worked out fine. I officially got my business ducks in a row in January of 2008.

When you first started out, were there any books or workshops that were helpful to you?
Honestly, I had three major inspirations that drove me to learn more. One was a photography forum on I learned a lot there about processing and clarity. Then I stumbled on Holly Brimhall’s blog. It was when I was looking at her images; I realized I was missing something major with my photography. I then joined Clickin’ Mom’s photography forum where I took some awesome workshops and now I’m actually a mentor on there. I have learned an amazing amount of information on CM.

How would you describe your photography style?
Why is this question so difficult for me? I would like to say that I have a carefree style + a touch of softness. Ideally, I would love to steer more towards lifestyle photography (think real simple magazine) but I’m not quite there yet. I love to utilize negative space and find myself drawn to backlight a lot also.

What type of photography do you do most and what is your favorite type?
I do more weddings/couples than anything else, but my favorite is senior girls. I love the style, attitude, and simplicity that they bring to a session.

What is your favorite thing about photography?
I love when you have those moments where you get home from a session and can’t WAIT to load the pictures and start editing. I also really enjoy taking a mediocre picture and creating something with the post processing that is truly gorgeous.

What inspires you as a photographer?
Does Pinterest count? I’m amazed at all the wonderful things that I can repin and just get my creative juices flowing. Seriously. I. am. obsessed.  I’m also inspired by God’s great creation. I always notice the way the sun is lighting the earth and how shadows are mixed in and it inspires me to create.

Do you have a studio or work out of your home?  Tell us about it.
I work on location. My favorite is to go into people’s homes or to somewhere sentimental to them. I don’t have a studio right now but do have clients come into my home occasionally for ordering.

You are in business with your husband, Andy.  What is that like?
I actually get this question a lot. Andy and I don’t work together on all tasks. I do most of the shooting and processing and he helps me out with weddings and all the other left brained aspects to business (taxes for example). He also helps me with my writing and is working along side me now as I develop a posing workshop for Clickin’ Moms.

What advice would you give a couple starting out in their photography business together?
I would recommend knowing what each person is in charge of. That way you both are a boss in some sort of way. It would be difficult to constantly be overlapping in tasks. Of course like any marriage, selflessness and supportiveness are priceless traits for working together.

What do you feel has been your best marketing strategy in your business?
I’ve really been all word of mouth so far, the only semi-marketing is really pushing holiday cards to get my name out there more.

What is the most challenging part of the business?
Balancing the seasons is very difficult. Living in the Midwest I have a very slow winter, a busy summer, and a CRAZY fall. I think about every year when I hit November I’m a mess of tears and ready to throw away my camera because of poor planning on my part. I’m a habitual over committer.

What is in your camera bag?
I actually am not a gear junky. I shoot with a Canon 5d mark II, Canon’s 24-70 2.8mm, Canon 70-200 2.8, and Canon’s 50mm 1.4.

What is your favorite lens?
I actually probably use my 70-200 the most, but I think if I had an 85 and a tilt shift I would use those a lot!

What would you be if you weren't a photographer?
I still consider myself firstly a stay at home mom, so I would probably do that a little more dedicatedly. If I worked outside the home though I would probably be a graphic designer or interior designer/home stager.

What is your favorite Savvy indulgence?
I love having friends in on a summer night. We live in the country and have 2.5 acres of privacy. I love having a good bonfire, chatting with the girls, while they guys play some game and the kids run around and play.

Thank you Jenna!

{Interview by Leslie Kerrigan}



  1. Beautiful images! Great interview! Thank you!

  2. That first shot of the couple is stunning! And I'm loving shots of the big family in their home. I'm a fan!!

  3. Great interview, Jenna! The way that you and your husband have worked out a successful business partnership is awesome. I love your clean, fresh style and you definitely do rock the backlight :)

  4. Wonderful interview! I love how you've found such a great balance between work and marriage:) Beautiful images :)

  5. Jenna, you're an inspiration and an amazing photographer. I'm honored to work with you on Clickin Moms and am more than happy to call you a friend.

  6. What a great post! Her work is stunning AND fun. Jenna is scheduled to take our family photos in a few weeks and we can't wait to see what she comes up with. I'm always thrilled with her work and would recommend her to anyone! ;)

  7. Very pretty work! I love that last image. I also love the honesty with which you answered your questions...I'm often in sleep-deprived tears come November as well!

  8. Jenna's work definitely comes across as fun and soft to me. Her photography is beautiful and you can really see her connection with her subjects. She's so young and talented--I can't wait to see what she does

  9. Love the interview! And so excited to hear you're working on a posing workshop for CM! Yay!!!