You may be familiar with her name. We featured her photography in our fashion spread, Southern Summer Style, in our debut issue released in July. Roxanne Still is a South Carolina-based wedding and portrait photographer and cinematographer who took a few minutes to talk with us about how she got started, new developments in her business, and where she hopes to go in the future. Pair with her stunning cinematography work at the end of this interview, and visit her website for more stunning videos and photographs.
Interview by: L. Michelle Brock
L: How did you get started in photography?
R: I hope this isn’t too cliche but I’ve always had a camera in my hand. When I was 10 I would literally set my moms camcorder up on a tripod and film our Christmas gatherings at my grandparent’s house. Not only would I film random gatherings like this but I would also take pictures on any cheap $10 disposable camera from the grocery store or gas station. My mom bought me my first film camera when I was in the 8th grade and the satisfaction I would get from hearing the shutter click was exhilarating. I would get so excited to develop my film and see all the shots I got. Fast-forward to 2012 when I started my own photography business as RoxannePhotography. This year we just re-branded and are now called Still Co. and offer not only photography but also cinematography.
L: Why did you choose to focus on weddings and portraits?
R: When I first began my business in 2012 I would photograph any and every type of session, including weddings. I thought it was ideal to offer every type of service imaginable. I quickly learned that it was exhausting and I was most happy photographing weddings. Weddings were my thing. I loved the rush of a wedding day and the reward of being able to capture such a life changing event. Two people becoming one and starting a life together, it’s so romantic and so much fun. Not only do I love photographing the actual wedding day but I love coming home to edit the wedding photos and create a blog with the couple’s story. Seeing their wedding day displayed in a story of photos is the best. Giving my clients their images so they can pass down for years and years is by far the biggest advantage. Knowing that their kids, grand-kids and great-grands will be looking at their wedding photos is so exciting.
L: What inspired you to introduce cinematography into your business?
R: I was always the family member creating home videos. My family still loves to bring out our old VHS tapes and embarrassingly watch what life was like 15 or so years ago. When our son was about to experience his first Christmas in 2013, it resparked my video ideas. I wanted to film his first Christmas. It was a hit. I made that video and just like that I was hooked again. All of the feelings I had when I was younger of carrying around a camera flooded me again. I love, love, love retelling stories for other people to see and someday look back on.
When I made that first video I remember saying I’m not going to offer wedding videos, I just want to do this on the side for my family and personal stuff but that quickly changed. My now-brother-in-law expressed to me his plan to propose to my sister and I of course wanted to make a video. Again, extreme excitement flooded me and I was more hooked than before. That following year I filmed their wedding (all while being a bridesmaid). It was a tad chaotic but I was thankful for the chance to video my first wedding. Things haven’t slowed down since then. After adding my husband, Trent, in the mix to help me, we decided to re-brand and we have been staying very busy with not only photography but also cinematography. Click here to view some of latest videos.
L: How is the process of producing cinematography different from photography? Or is it similar?
R: It is so different! Cinema will suck me dry of creativity. It takes every ounce of my creativity to put together a wedding day highlight. That seems so weird to say but it’s the only way I can think of explaining it. My process for editing wedding photos looks like this: cull photos, edit photos (basic color correction,etc.), export photos. (Don’t forget blogging each wedding and ordering the products.) My video process looks like this: cull videos, put videos in a timeline and create a story (film) that isn’t too short or too long, keeps the viewer engaged, time everything just right to music, add audio from vows and speeches (time it all together just right), then color grade and edit each clip.
It’s exhausting but also very rewarding. I always have people tell me that they cried watching our videos. One time I had a bride tell me that her husband cried watching their highlight film and that was HUGE. Getting a guy to cry doesn’t happen a lot, especially for this guy. I’ve also heard from random people, who didn’t even know my sister and her husband, tell me that they watched their proposal video and cried! It always makes me so happy when people can watch our videos and have such a strong response!
L: Where else would you like to expand your business?
R: I feel happy where we are right now as far as what we offer. I know we always have room for improving our work though and always love to learn and advance each aspect of our business. But I think I would love to see our business expand more into other states. I get the travel bug every now and then and want to see new places. Lately I want to go to Texas or Colorado.