Kim Dalton's picture
Crew Mom

Who's in the Crew? - Spotlight on Mikala Freitas

NAME: Mikala Freitas - I'm currently creating a website-so it is not up and running right now. You can follow me on Instagram @PhotoMikala and @HeadshotPhotoNY

WHERE DO YOU LIVE? NYC

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN SHOOTING HEADSHOTS? I started shooting at age 7. My first camera was a Kodak Pocket Instamatic that used 110 film. It was actually my Dad’s camera but he was notorious for cropping off family members' heads in his photographs. Thus, I took it upon myself to become the family picture taker. In Middle School, I took my first photography class, they lent us cameras, it was the first time I shot and developed 35mm film. I was so excited that I saved my allowance and in High School, I purchased a Pentax K1000. I absolutely love how you can capture a slice, a moment, and get a viewer to look at things differently in a single photograph.

WHAT ELSE DO YOU LIKE TO SHOOT? I love to shoot travel and wildlife. Lately, I have been having a lot of fun shooting night portraits and dancers.

YOUR LIGHTING SETUP FOR HEADSHOTS? I use LEDGO LED bi-color panels.

WHEN DID YOU FIRST DISCOVER PH AND THE HSC? I met Peter at Photo Plus Expo in October of 2017. At the time, if you purchased his book for $40 you got 3 months in the crew for free. In my first 6 weeks, I read the book, watched every single video that was on the HSC site, and was so impressed that I had signed up for the January 2018 intensive. At the intensive, I signed up for Headshot Mania. I was hooked and all in!

HOW LONG DID IT TAKE TO JOIN THE CREW AFTER YOU FOUND IT? I signed up at the Expo after meeting Peter. I was looking for a way to monetize my hobby of photography and when I met Peter I thought: I should be shooting headshots. I know actors and I understand their needs. I need to learn how to do this.

TELL US ABOUT THE SPACE YOU SHOOT IN. DO YOU OWN IT, RENT IT OR LIVE IN IT? I will see friends or personal referrals in my living room studio. If it's a client I do not know, or a client I am trying to impress, I will rent Peter’s studio in NYC.

WHAT IS ONE THING PEOPLE WOULD NEVER GUESS ABOUT YOU? I competed in synchronized swimming in college at UC Berkeley. We were ranked 5th in the nation. I started dancing at 3. Performed in my first professional musical, Peter Pan, at age 7. Traveled Internationally at age 14, performing in the Soviet Bloch countries of Romania and Hungry. At 19, I started my own production company providing entertainment for corporate events. I have performed in just about every type of stage; regional theater, stadiums, cruise ships, fairs, festivals and theme parks, Disney, Broadway, Radio City, The Metropolitan Opera, TV and Film Interesting side note while working on Cruise Ships- the MS Silver Seas had a relationship with National Geographic and they would bring writers and photographers on board to give lectures to the guest. I had the privilege of being tutored by Geographic photographers; Bob Krist and Joel Sartore.

WHAT'S ONE THING YOU WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT YOU? I will salsa, swing or just dance with you until the sun comes up..every day of the week.

24 Comments

Beth Madison's picture
Protégé

Great to learn more about you, Mikala! Very impressed with your dance and performance background!

I met Peter at Photo Plus Expo in October of 2017, too!! Maybe we were standing next to each other at his booth!!

Love the elephant "headshot" on your Instagram!

Kim Dalton's picture
Crew Mom

Ha! Fun fact, Beth :)

Frederic Le Pon's picture
Protégé

So nice to learn about those amazing people.
And nice to read you started with a Pentax camera ! So did I...and I still shoot with a Pentax.

Beth Madison's picture
Protégé

I had Pentax way back when, too! An MX and an ME. Then I went to an Olympus, then to Nikon, where I still am....

Frederic Le Pon's picture
Protégé

I'm still in love with this brand...but can't explain why! maybe because that's the only brand I had in my photography life.

Beth Madison's picture
Protégé

Most photographer I know are fiercely brand-loyal. (Maybe because it costs so much to switch!) And I also think that we imprint, like little baby ducklings, on our first camera...

Frederic Le Pon's picture
Protégé

You’re probably right

Tod Eltzroth's picture
Protégé

Cool!

Carolin Thiersch's picture
Associate

Yeah, really great to learn more about you Mikala! And great pictures! Thanks for sharing!!! ...and it was so much fun, that wie did the Headshot Intensive together!!!

Michael Miller's picture
Protégé

The First commercial job I had was a high volume studio and we shot everything on the K1000. And synchronized swimming... I was first impressed with that when I saw Esther Williams movies. I've been fascinated by it ever since. That takes a very special talent. Kudos.

Mikala Freitas's picture
Protégé

I loved Esther Williams as well, watched all her movies

Menno Klaasse's picture
Protégé

This is such a great way to learn more about each other. Thanks for sharing Mikala!
Fun fact I used to work on Cruise ships also but as a Bar-Manager. What ship did you work on Mikala?

Mikala Freitas's picture
Protégé

I worked on 2 ships: Royal Cruise Lines M/S -Royal Odyssey and Silver Sea's- M/S Silver Cloud, which did you work on?

Menno Klaasse's picture
Protégé

I worked for Cunard on the Queen Mary 2 and the Caronia.

Mikala Freitas's picture
Protégé

Awesome, what years-I had friends who worked on QE2

Menno Klaasse's picture
Protégé

2004-2009 Queen Mary 2
1995-1996 Caronia

Anna Cillan's picture
Protégé

Mikaela, my spirit animal is the elephant...or maybe its just my fave. I loved reading all about you and your adventures. You are an all around Art - teeest!

Mikala Freitas's picture
Protégé

Elepants are easy to love!!

Jason Connel's picture
Protégé

Mikala Is one of my top 10 favorite people on the planet! So cool on the write up! Congrats girl!!

Claudia Hoag's picture
Associate

Love it! Thanks for sharing, that was delightful and I'm glad to know more about you!

Claudia Hoag's picture
Associate

Also, great pics, I especially like the one with the canoes!

Mikala Freitas's picture
Protégé

Thanks, Kim wasn't able to caption the photos so I will here: 1. Headshot by Peter Hurley 2. Top of Mt Kalapatar, Nepal (Everst in Background) 3. My Elephant Pal in Chitwan, Nepal The Following were all taken on Film 4..Double Exposure of Cal Diving Team taken in 1989 5. Eiffel Tower in 1984 6-8. All along the Amazon 1999

Tod Eltzroth's picture
Protégé

Interesting!

Peter Istvan's picture
Protégé

Awesome!