Kim Dalton's picture
Crew Mom

Who's in the Crew? - Spotlight on Karen Richard

NAME: Karen Richard 

WEBSITE - https://www.karenlrichardphotography.com/
CREW PAGE - https://headshotcrew.com/karenlrichard
INSTAGRAM - https://www.instagram.com/karenlrichardphoto/
FACEBOOK - https://www.facebook.com/KarenLRichardPhotography
LINKEDIN - https://www.linkedin.com/in/karenlrichard/

WHERE ARE YOU FROM AND WHERE DO YOU LIVE NOW?
I grew up in South London, England, and moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 2010. Up until then, I had never lived further than 60 miles from London!

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN SHOOTING HEADSHOTS?

I’ve been shooting headshots since I went pro in 2014, but I made the decision to specialize in early 2020 and now headshots make up 95% of my business.

WHAT IS YOUR LIGHTING SETUP FOR HEADSHOTS?

I shoot Paul C Buff Einstein strobes using the triangle for women and a parallel set up for men. PCB is based in Nashville so it’s super convenient if I ever need service or repairs.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR STUDIO. DO YOU OWN IT? RENT IT? OR LIVE IN IT?

My studio is in the basement of our home so I have a very easy commute! We converted my main studio area from an unfinished space in 2015 so it has been purpose-built for my needs. It measures 30 x 15’ with no natural light so it’s perfect for shooting headshots. I also have a dressing room, bathroom, kitchenette, and reception area which I use to review the images with my clients at the end of their shoot.
WHAT ELSE DO YOU LIKE TO SHOOT?

I love shooting nature, especially macro portraits of bugs, spiders, and snakes! I also really enjoy traveling to exotic places and of course, I always carry a camera so I can capture the people, architecture, and landscapes we see.
WHEN DID YOU FIRST DISCOVER PH AND THE HSC?

I’ve been a photographer for as long as I can remember. My dad was a keen amateur and I learned the basics on his manual Lubitel TLR 110 film camera when I was probably no more than 7 years old. I got my first SLR camera for my 13th birthday, a Soviet-built manual Zenit E; I shot black and white film and did my own processing in the youth club darkroom.

I actually considered a career in photography when I left school, but was encouraged to get a “proper job” and ended up working in a bank before spending many years in executive roles in the commercial construction industry. I chucked in my job to follow my husband Luc to the US after his company moved him back here. It took 2 years to sort out my green card, and in that time I got right over corporate life, (especially the 60 hour weeks and 5 am starts!) and was ready for a complete career change!. I also had plenty of time on my hands to fall back in love with photography so that became the obvious choice.

I started my business in 2014 shooting pretty much everything except weddings and newborns but focused mainly on editorial and fashion. My work was published regularly in about 20 different independent magazines but I found it hard to monetize this and started marketing headshots because I enjoyed working with corporates (they are my peeps!). I stumbled on Peter’s videos while searching for headshot tips online and signed up for a trial in late 2016 with encouragement from Greg Thomason.

HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO JOIN THE CREW ONCE YOU FOUND IT?

I joined right after I saw my first crew cast! It did take me a while to sign up for Peter’s Headshot Intensive though - I was booked to do the NY workshop in May last year but covid threw a spanner in the works. I finally got to do the West Palm Beach Intensive this February - I had a fantastic experience, met some awesome people, and learned a ton!

WHAT IS ONE THING PEOPLE WOULD NEVER GUESS ABOUT YOU?

I’ve never owned a DLSR camera - or shot Canon or Nikon! I shot Olympus for most of my film days, and by the time I felt ready to transition to digital the first mirrorless systems were being launched. I dipped my toe in the water with Panasonic Lumix micro 4/3 cameras with Leica and Olympus lenses, and then switched to Sony Alpha Full Frame in 2017. I shoot most of my headshots with an A7ii and a Zeiss Basis 85mm F1.8, and most of my portrait and commercial work with an A7Rii / A7Riv and a Tamron 28-70mm F2.8.

WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT YOU?
I love to travel and have visited over 70 countries over the years. I especially enjoy adventure travel and been lucky enough to do some really cool trips including hiking the Inca Trail in Peru, summiting Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, snorkeling in the Galapagos and in a glacial lake in Iceland, spending a week on a horseback safari in Botswana, and a month on a lion monitoring project on South African game reserve!

13 Comments

Tony Angel's picture
Protégé

Yay to Karen, and old friend and work colleague who's the reason I'm here. A consummate professional.

Karen L Richard's picture
Associate

Who could imagine it all those years ago Tony? It's been great to reconnect with you through photography!

Teresa Walton's picture
Associate

Hey Karen - I love having you here :)

Karen L Richard's picture
Associate

Hey Teresa, I love being a part of the Crew and I've made so many amazing friends! You played such a big part in helping me to Associate, and Luc and I have had such a blast hanging out with you when we visit London too!

Peter Istvan's picture
Protégé

Great to read about you Karen

Karen L Richard's picture
Associate

Thank you Peter!

Brian Gayley's picture
Protégé

Karen has been a great role model and support in my startup process. She is very open with her experience and tips for success. Don’t know how it works but she has my nomination for mentor!!!

Karen L Richard's picture
Associate

Thank you, Brian! It's been my pleasure! I've benefitted from the help and support of other Crew members and I'm more than happy to pay it forward!

Scott Endersby's picture
Protégé

Very cool Karen!!

Cindy Quinn's picture
Associate

Great reading about you and how you got started in the business Karen

Linda Packard's picture
Protégé

Beautiful work, Karen! You've had such a fascinating life!

Maicol Osorio's picture
Associate

Karen your work is amazing, love it. And love getting to know more about you.

Beth Madison's picture
Associate

Awesome work, Karen!!