Every week we bring you a featured blogger or talent who inspires us. This week we’re so excited to share with you one of our all-time favorite lifestyle photographer, Jeff Mindell! Based in Los Angeles, Jeff has worked with huge brands, publications and businesses such as 100 Layer Cake, Blue Bottle Coffee, and Starbucks. His talent and creative eye are easy to see when you look at his amazing work, plus his Instagram and Snapchat game are on point – make sure to follow! Learn more about Jeff and see his work here.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background?
I am a freelance lifestyle photographer based in LA. Originally from NJ, I moved out to the west coast five years ago with my wife, Kelly. I work with brands to create vibrant content for social media and otherwise.
What 3 words would you use to describe yourself?
Goofy, Homebody, Dog-person.
What Profession other than yours would you love to attempt?
Teaching. I know that I would be a kick-ass professor. It’s a goal of mine to teach classes some day at a university or college.
What is your favorite quote?
“Why not?” I’m trying my best to be a Yes man. It’s very much outside my comfort zone so I’m always reminding myself “why not?” as I can only learn from the experiences that I take advantage of.
What inspires your work?
Travel and other creatives in my field that I look up to and admire.
What is your favorite social media platform and why?
SNAP. CHAT. I have such an amazing relationship with my audience through my Snapchat. I love that platform so, so much. It’s just such an amazing technology that in real time allows me to connect with people all over the globe. My channel is public and I really do try and make an effort to reply to everyone who reaches out to me on the platform. For me, it’s the most dynamic outlet and really let’s me create stories that are engaging and makes people want to hang out and come with me throughout my day. I find that the stories that do really well for me are ones where I might conceptualize the happenings that go on ahead of time and then just kind of improv my way through it. (It has also forced me to be 100% comfortable in front of the camera, which is great if anything ever comes of that down the line.)
Where do you find inspiration for your photography?
Exploration. Whenever I get to a place or city I’ve never been, I love nothing more than getting out for a walk to scope everything out. I do my best thinking when I’m in that zone. I also love when people tell me my images brighten their day or how much I made them appreciate color and vibrancy in the world! That’s why I love doing what I do. If I’m able to flex my own creative muscles and make people smile along the way, that is the best damn job in the world.
What do you think it is about your photography that keeps people coming back for more?
I really do make a conscious effort to be as transparent as I possibly can in my images and social posts. Much of the online world can be an extremely overly-curated space and I think people appreciate the fact that I don’t really sugarcoat anything. I’m the exact same person in real life that I am online and I like to believe my content is very representative of that.
How does a brand get your attention for a feature?
95% of my new biz inquiries come to my email. The other 5% might DM me on Instagram or even leave a comment publicly. I’m constantly checking and replying to my Gmail inbox so if you send me an email, I will always respond. Unless you are sending me a blanket PR pitch. Please don’t send me a blanket PR pitch haha.
What do you love most about your work?
Again, I’m going with how it makes other people feel. When I put out work that I’m super proud of and my audience loves it too, that is a really, really humbling feeling 🙂
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
As a dad of a bunch of little kids, living in a house in the ‘burbs. On my living room coffee table is a big old hardcover book of my interior shots.
In your opinion, what separates a great blog from an unsuccessful blog?
Relatability. If the audience knows nothing about you or maybe you’re hiding behind great-looking and/or shiny polished content, how can you really expect your audience to get a sense for who you are? I guess you’d also want to consider originality. Everyone obviously has a unique voice, but it can be very hard to get lost in the shuffle nowadays. I’d stress the importance of finding your voice and then yelling as loud as you can!