Evelyn Kugler is a 22 year old photographer currently living in South Florida. She graduated from Florida State University in December 2014. She is the only photographer in the family, but her dad and grandfather are very talented painters. Growing up Evelyn focussed on gymnastics and art, particularly drawing and painting. She has a younger sister who is still in college. In December 2013 her Mum passed away from breast cancer. She says she owes everything to her Mum (and her Dad). Her Mum taught her to (reasonably) spend money on traveling and adventures, because she thought it was better to shape a person rather than your house. One thing that not many people know about Evelyn, is that she has a benign tumor in her right wrist which can make daily activities a little more difficult and painful. Read on to find out more.
When did you first find yourself interested in photography and how did you get started?
The first time I got interested in photography was when I was 13 and I got a Canon point and shoot camera for Christmas. I took so many pictures with it, especially of flowers because it had a new macro setting, those photos are still framed and hanging in my parents’ house. As I went through high school, I paid more attention to school and didn’t pick it back up until college when I got my first DSLR camera.
Who has helped you in the process of following your dream?
Oh man, a ton of people. I get a lot of moral support from friends and family. Also, reading and constantly watching tutorials has helped me shape myself into the growing photographer that I am.
What inspires you?
Hmmm… well I always look to Ravi Vora for inspiration. His photos are breath taking and really motivate me to try new angles and travel to different places.
What is your favourite photograph you have ever taken and why?
At this point in time, my favorite photo is of these rocks on Palm Beach. Just before the sun rose, it cast a pink hue which made for a great vibrant photo.
What challenges have you encountered and how have you overcome them?
Sometimes I just don’t have a good day of shooting and no matter what I do in Photoshop, I can’t create an image I truly love. So I’ll usually just spend that night reading techniques and try again tomorrow.
What keeps you going? / What stops you from giving up.
My mom once told me to always persevere when it came to a goal or a passion that I had, and even though she’s gone I can still hear her clear as day telling me to keep going and to be patient.
What message are you trying to share with your work?
Well one thing I constantly debate about photography is whether or not to get a degree in the subject. As of right now, all my work is done without one so I hope that brings motivation to people to go out and try photography and not label your abilities with a piece of paper. It just takes hard work.
How do you deal with criticism / How did you learn to deal with criticism?
I’m my own worst critic. I will sit there and tear my photos apart and completely doubt myself, so when other people criticize me, it’s not nearly as bad as what I think myself. I’ll ignore meaningless comments but I’ll listen to constructive criticism.
What is it that you love about what you do? OR Why do you love what you do?
I love doing photography because it’s how I express myself in that specific moment. When I take photos of the landscape, I want to show everyone what exactly caught my eye. When I shoot concerts, I’m sharing the energy that the artist or band is portraying on stage, and that’s just amazing to me.
What advice would you give to aspiring artists?
Get out of your comfort zone. It’s difficult, but it’s worth it. I would’ve never taken the photos that I have if I didn’t go out of my way to contact a venue or get up before the sunrise. Also, if your favorite photographers have blogs, follow them, they always give great insight.
What have you learned in the process of following your dream?
Nothing is ever easy or perfect, but you have to keep trying. And not everyone is going to like what you create, but how you feel is all that matters.
What are you most excited for in the future?
To see where these photos take me. I’m still figuring out my style so I hope that I will land on something unique in the near future.