Perfectly Real – Elisabeth Simard

Say hi to Elisabeth from Quebec City, Canada!  She is our very first Perfectly Real Artist.

The thing that struck us most about Elisabeth’s submission was how effectively she captured an entire story in single images, which is not an easy feat at all!  Here’s a little bit more about Elisabeth in her own words. We encourage you to check out more of her gorgeous work. 

Elisabeth Simard PhotographieRuban Casette  (blog), FacebookInstagram

small child peeking through stairs - Elisabeth Simard Photographie - Perfectly Real Artist

What’s your favorite lens for shooting this type of work?  And do you have any accessories you just love (filter, bag, camera strap, etc.)?

When it comes to photography gear, I am on the minimalist side. I use a Canon EOS 6D and a Sigma 35 mm 1.4 Art. I have to say that I sometimes wish I had a 24 mm lens so I could take wider frame in particular situations. It may be my next splurge. I don’t have a good camera strap but I am dreaming of owning a Holdfast leather one. It is so beautiful! But I don’t really need one. And when it comes to camera bag, is it a shame that I use my purse?  Oh and my purse is also my super duper diaper bag. I am not proud of this situation!

mom loves on baby while childred play around her - Elisabeth Simard Photographie - Perfectly Real Artist
What is your favorite type of light to shoot in?

I use to love to take pictures at golden hour. I was obsessed with magic light and wasn’t really good at appreciating other kinds of light. I think it felt like since the light would be gorgeous, my pictures would be too. Haha! Like a lot of other mom photographers, I started to appreciate and see more potential inside my own home after the birth of my oldest son. Slowly, I learned to work and play with “inside the home” light. Now, I really enjoy a dramatic light with a lot of contrasts and exposing for shadows.

small child wants to be left alone - Elisabeth Simard Photographie - Perfectly Real Artist

Do you have a favorite spot to watch life unfold and shoot?

Our entire home! But if I have to take just one area, it would be our dinning room. From an aesthetic point of view, the light is gorgeous, there is not much clutter or stuff on the walls and almost everything is white. This is the perfect canvas to capture the colourful life of my kids. My sons spend a lot of time in the dining room, eating, playing and learning to be brothers (one is 2 years old and the other is 6 months old). I have a little spot in the kitchen where I can watch everything they do without being an “intruder”. So much magic happens when I just stand there, watching them. Life as its best!

small child painting in silhouette - Elisabeth Simard Photographie - Perfectly Real Artist

What is the most valuable tip you have learned in pursuit of shooting in a more documentary style?

Stop the spray and pray! Take the time to let the story unfold in front of your eyes and learn to press the shutter when the right moment comes. When I feel insecure with the pictures I am taking, I tend to take too many in the hope something will be good afterwards. I used to be totally overwhelmed by the amount of pictures I had to go through after a shoot to find the ones that were important in communicating the story and emotion I wanted. I won’t say that I don’t still do it from time to time but I am far more aware and patient when it comes to pressing the shutter now that I have this valuable tip in mind. I have to repeat it to myself over and over, though!

Baby cries on floor while cooking - Elisabeth Simard Photographie - Perfectly Real Artist

See our Submissions page for more details on how to submit for a Perfectly Real Artist feature.