Today we’d like to introduce you to Alan Weissman.
Hi Alan, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I was a window decorator in the early 80s. I used to be married to a clothing designer. Photography was my hobby. We couldn’t afford a photographer for her advertising campaigns. So, I took a couple of classes at UCLA Extension, and I found out that I had a natural talent for photography. Then, people were drawn to my photos, and my career in photography took off.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
I had to make a sizable investment in equipment and learn shooting techniques. In those days, you had to be a master at your craft because there was no digital — we used film and had to wait two to three days to see the results. There was no room for mistakes. We had 36 pictures on a roll, and we had to get it right. Today, most young photographers just shoot, and they think they will fix it later in Photoshop. I still believe in getting it right in camera. I also had to learn marketing and how to acquire clients. When I first started, people would call me, and I would drive all the way over to them in person to show them my photos, just to get a job, because there was no internet and social media for marketing. I did window design at first along with photography to pay my bills until the photography business built up, and I opened my first photography studio on La Brea Avenue in Hollywood.
Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I specialize in headshots for celebrities, aspiring actors, and corporate portraits for businesses. I’m also known for my film noir portraits. My passion is traveling and taking photographs. I like discovering other cultures and working with my wife who practices humanitarian medicine. My wife is a nurse, midwife, and doctor of East Asian medicine and has delivered more than 8,000 babies. I recently started maternity portraits, and I’m really enjoying it. I also love my two dogs, Winston and Charlie. I’m most proud of the way I can capture a person’s essence and personality in a portrait.
How do you define success?
My biggest success was to find my true calling in life. I have about five books with hundreds and hundreds of handwritten “thank you” letters from clients that I saved over the years. I’ve helped many people start their careers in acting. I’ve been able to remain a photographer for over 30 years and do my passion, which is what I love. Success is to me to still continue to turn out the best portrait that I can and have the excitement to do it and love it.
- Headshots are $450 for a two-look session.
- Business portraits are $350.
- Maternity portraits are $500.
- Corporations can inquire regarding team photos on location, starting at $475.