We had the good fortune of connecting with Erin Cheatham and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Erin, let’s start by talking about what inspires you?
I have always been inspired by beauty in unexpected places. It all started with making beautiful images out of ordinary and plain things. My craft and love for photography has evolved over time and has turned into capturing the love and connection between loved ones. Some may say a simple glance, a squishy nose smile or holding of a child’s hand are ordinary moments, but as I have started my own family and painfully watched as time has turned my babies into toddlers and now young boys, I truly understand that for my clients these “in between” moments are everything and deserve to be captured and treasured forever.
I love working families and learning their story and being able to make them realize and see that their “ordinary” family is actually truly beautiful and something to be cherished. Like I said, I believe beauty can be found in ordinary.
I truly believe this is what I was meant to do and that is part of me – my grandfather had a passion for photography as well and even built his own dark room in a tiny closet to develop his photos. For as long as I can remember, I have always felt a pull and a desire to capture life in images. From always seeing my mom with a camera in hand to building scrapbooks and photo albums in high school. I didn’t know it at the time, but this was my effort to freeze time and keep my memories alive.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I grew up looking through my grandma’s photo albums in awe of the moments captured from the past and frozen in time. I want to deliver just that to my clients and I strive to produce timeless images always. Carefully refining my editing style has been rooted with this goal always top of mind.
Connection – it can manifest in so many ways. It should come as no surprise that my favorite sessions to photograph are families, newborns and children and couples, where I can highlight that connection. I do have a lot of love for senior portraits and intimate weddings and events as well.
Additionally, with the growing need for digital image content for social media and marketing, I have also been able to merge my marketing background to help small businesses shine with lifestyle branding and headshots. As many may not know, I received a marketing degree from Baylor University (minored in photography) – my original goal was to eventually become a commercial photographer. I love working with small businesses to show them how special they or their products are through my work – I know that everyone has a story to tell.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Empire Café for brunch, where it is flanked by some amazing antique shopping!
Astros Game, of course!
The Houston Arboretum for a nature walk (one of my favorite places for a photo session)
Chocolate chip cookies at Tiny Boxwoods is a must!
Lunch at Quisie’s Table
Buchanan’s Nursery for a house plant or succulents
Plonk! for dinner – a hidden gem for sure! Also, have a soft spot for bananas foster at Brennan’s & The Grove, my husband and I had our wedding reception there! 🙂
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My parents for cultivating my creativity the way they did. I always felt supported even though I may not have always had the best images early on – they knew and help me believe it was the passion behind it that counted. They have also instilled a sense of hard work and discipline in me. If that didn’t exist, I would not be where I am today.
Major shoutout to my husband – building this business has not been a swift or easy road, but he has been a tremendous support system for me. From the day we met I have wanted to make this my business and year after year he has been with me along the way.
Headshot by Lauren Ratliff Photography