Inside the Queens’ Studio with Cory Ryan

by Casserole Queens

The Queens periodically interview someone we find interesting and inspiring. In this installment, we are super excited to introduce you to Cory Ryan, photographer extraordinaire! Cory was just recently voted one of the Top 10 Best Photographers” in Austin, TX by the Knot Magazine, and won a Golden Boot for her work at the 2009 Austin Fashion Week Awards. In addition to shooting weddings and portraits, she is also mastering the art of food photography. Yum!  Cory’s wit and energy is infectious – and we are sure you will enjoy learning more about her – just like we did!

Tell us a little about yourself and why you chose photography as a career.

I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a degree in film & video production and post graduation, worked as an editor for 3 years. After one particularly long documentary project, I got creatively burned out and was sick of sitting in front of a computer all day. I decided I needed a career that was more social and active. Since I already had lighting, composition and visual storytelling skills, I thought, ” why not photography?”

What is your “recipe” for success?

Be sure that your brand and your photographic identity are truly authentic to who you are as a person. People can tell when you’re trying to be someone you are not. Work at being innovative and 100% yourself in all the work you create!

If you weren’t a professional photographer you would be…

A full-time musician. I currently play bass in Hollywood Gossip and would love it if that could actually pay the bills!

Why do you enjoy shooting food? And how is it different than your other gigs (wedding, commercial, etc.)?

Food doesn’t talk back. Ha.

If a casserole described your personality – what casserole would it be?

Ummmm, a 7-layer dip?

Name one photography disaster you’ve had.

That was probably the windy wedding when my umbrella blew out backwards during formal photos and I sliced my thumb trying to get it fixed. Blood was gushing all over my camera body and I had to try not to freak out in front of the family.

What do you think makes a good food image?

Texture, lighting, dish presentation’s and garnish. I love it when a chef or stylist surprises me with some unexpected garnish or dollop of asymmetrical sauce!

Are there some foods that you find impossible to photograph?

Some foods are naturally impossible to photograph, like ice cream. What’s funny is that they make fake versions that look identical to the real thing, but that don’t melt! There are food styling resources that make almost anything possible these days.

Who was your most fun/interesting client?

That would easily have to be the “Premiere Clothes-Free Travel Agency” that hired me to shoot a 7-day nude cruise to the Caribbean.

If someone wrote a book about you, what would the title be?

This is so hard! How about, “How to be Fearless and Other Fun Tricks from a Pedicure Addict”?

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