Based in the state of Pennsylvania, fine art photographer Tami Quigley has a talent for capturing the essence of a diverse array of subjects. Tami incorporates her skillful observations, creative writing, and love of music into all of her wonderful pieces. With a fresh approach and connection to her surroundings, the perfect formula is provided for Tami’s stunning works. Tami has an appreciation for simplicity, savors it, and successfully conveys this to her viewers with the love of her craft.
Tami, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and experiences with us and thank you so much for all of your thoughtful responses. You are a talented artist and someone whose work is definitely worth following. I hope to see more wonderful things from you in the future!
Can you please tell the readers a bit about yourself?
I love capturing the beauty and whimsy in nature – there’s beauty all around us, we just have to look for it in the simplest things. What I try to capture are images that mirror the magic of ordinary days in nature, wildlife, and landscape photography. I also love shooting street photography, often depicting it in an artistic way with a cool mood, as well as paintography, taking an image and interpreting it in a more artistic way. I enjoy designing creative still life images, such as when a few months ago I photographed an electric votive candle nestled in a fresh December snowfall in the yard one evening, titling it “One Little Candle,” a hope-filled image especially in this age of COVID-19.
I’m a journalist/photojournalist by profession.
Where is home?
After browsing through your website, I see that you have built up an extensive collection of wonderful photography. When did you first become interested in photography and how long have you been involved with it?
My lifelong love of creative writing was joined by nature photography beginning in 2009, which grew out of walking the trails and paths of eastern Pennsylvania. One day I thought why am I not capturing this beauty in photos?
That segued into making videos of the seasons, their beauty showcased in my original photos set to music by artists including Bobby Darin and Ella Fitzgerald. I began a blog, “Trailscapes,” to post the videos, and eventually launched a YouTube channel on which to post them as well. I also post my photos on my blog. Subsequently, I began posting them for purchase on Fine Art America/Pixels and promote them on Twitter and Instagram.
My photos focus on nature, landscape, wildlife, street photography, and some candids. In many cases, I am partial to black and white, monochrome, sepia, and selective color, especially because I believe they help create a certain mood in the image, often nostalgic especially with sepia.
My favorite photo captures include sweet white-tailed deer, beautiful landscapes, and some cool street photography. Photos are taken in Pennsylvania, nearby northwestern New Jersey and New York City, and the Lowcountry of Beaufort County, South Carolina.
Are you formally taught or self-taught?
Self-taught. I took two basic classes, but I’m a firm believer in learning by doing.
How did you develop your photographic style?
It’s evolved over time, incorporating some more creative processing to achieve a certain look – often artistic – or mood.
What do you hope viewers take away from your images?
I hope they come away with an appreciation of the beauty that surrounds us in our world, with a touch of inspiration and hopefully a smile!
Who or what inspires you in your personal life and work?
I’m inspired by God’s beautiful creation and love capturing that splendor in my images. I’m inspired when I’m lucky enough to get an up-close glimpse into the world of our precious wildlife, such as a fawn nuzzling its mama doe or even nursing! (as in Nurturing Nature). The coolness of street photography is an inspiration, capturing the essence of a place and presenting it in an artistic way.
I always post my photos with some type of quote, which could be from Scripture in the Bible, such as “The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land” from the Song of Solomon. There are many times, such as on a trail on a beautiful summer (my most favorite of seasons!) day that I think of Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God.”
Other inspirations are favorite quotes from writers such as Jack Kerouac (“I saw that my life was a vast glowing page and I could do anything I wanted”) and Kahlil Gibran (“Kindness is like snow. It beautifies everything it covers”), as I’m a big fan of both. I love singing and music, and frequently incorporate song titles or lyrics into the titles and descriptions of my photos if I believe the image in sync with the song. My favorite is without a doubt, Elvis Presley, thank you, thank you very much! I’ve tapped into Elvis’ lyrics many times, including from my favorite Gospel hymn, “Somebody Bigger Than You And I” as well as other favorites like “I’ll Remember You,” “Forget Me Never” and “Blue Suede Shoes.”
The quotes and lyrics can sometimes be a springboard to an image … I’ll think of them and keep an eye out for a scene to shoot that would illustrate those words.
I try to link the beauty of photography, writing, and often music together in my photos, hopefully weaving together a tapestry of these beautiful arts in an image.
What drives you to create; does it satisfy a need or passion?
I’ve always been creative, beginning with writing in childhood. That now includes creating an image that I hope others will like as much as I do.
Which is your favorite image? Could you explain the background story behind it?
It’s very difficult for me to choose one favorite! But I can say I especially love the white-tailed deer. There is a doe in a local park that I began photographing in 2012, and just by talking to her while I was photographing built up a sense of trust – I believe animals may not know what our words mean, but they know the tone of kindness. This led to her trusting me to photograph her fawns as well for the next several years, often while giving them apples which they very much enjoy! She and a few of her fawns over the years would walk right up to me and patiently stand there waiting for an apple or run over to me through the field. To have a wild animal actually recognize and trust you is an amazing experience, one I never thought I’d have. Sadly, I haven’t seen her in two years, I’m sure she has passed. But I still am blessed to photograph the deer in her family line, such as in “Cute As A Button,” which I shot of a button buck who is the offspring of one of her fawns. In that photo, he’s eyeing an apple in the snow which he then quickly ate!
Do you have any tips for aspiring photographers?
Enjoy the journey that photography takes you on … you’ll find your niche, whether it be in nature, a busy city sidewalk, creative photography … wherever you feel your imagination, interest, and camera “click” together in the best way. You may see sights you pass all the time in a new light, as I have, especially with covered bridges – we’re blessed to have seven historic beauties in this area, and since I’ve been photographing they have become one of my favorite subjects. And remember the words of my photographic hero Ansel Adams, “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” So make it your own, and make the journey your own … enjoy it!
Where do you currently display your photography? How can people purchase one or more of your pieces?
My work is available on Pixels/Fine Art America as prints, gifts, and décor.
It’s also promoted on Twitter, Instagram, my blog Trailscapes and YouTube channel.
What photographic gear do you currently use?
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V.
What is your favorite photography accessory?
A lens cleaner wipe is always in my bag, especially for rainy or snowy days!
What piece of equipment would you most like to get but don’t have yet?
In the future, I’d like to convert my older camera into Infrared. I’d also like to explore learning film photography.
Do you use Photoshop, Lightroom, or any other software programs for post-processing your images?
Yes, especially to process an image in a more artistic way in addition to the basics like contrast and color.
Was there a point in your journey when you started to feel really good about your work? If so, what did it feel like to get past that “tipping point?”
It was a good feeling when I felt my images were good enough on their own to tinker with in a more artistic way, the first of these I think was “Sunset Glint In The Mist.” However, I really have a special place in my heart for some of my earliest images, such as some of the white-tailed deer which may not have been as good quality but the experience was priceless!
Do you have any projects that make you look back and shake your head? What made the experience so unpleasant?
I think some of my earliest videos of the seasons … I wouldn’t say the experience was unpleasant, but my images got better over time, as they would for every photographer as he or she learns more and gains experience. But there were one or two of those early videos where I used some color effects/transitions that make me think oh what was I thinking! But it’s all part of the learning process.
What do you think the future holds for you? Where do you see yourself in the next few years?
Still shooting, learning more, and moving forward on this wonderful creative journey that is photography, one click at a time.