I am 31 and live in the west Littleton area (south Jefferson County). 2012 is when I began my photography business, Chesney Louie Photography.
My path began when I realized that I had a gift in capturing people and candid, in-between moments. I started out by taking photos of my kids, which built into friends and finally into families and weddings. The journey of always learning is my motto. Photography is ever-changing. I was a hospice-certified nursing assistant before I went full-time in photography. That was one of my favorite jobs ever, and I still miss it even now. I care deeply about people, and I’ve switched gears from caring for them in their last moments to capturing their best moments.
I love the art of (photography). It’s fun creating something with people who never knew they were as photogenic as they are! Humans are beautiful. I decided to take it seriously when I realized that I had a gift in creating what was in my head.
I know that I stand out. I get side-glances often, and I’m at the point now where I’m used to it. There’s very few of us (Black and African-Americans) in the middle of suburbia, so a little extra kindness goes a long way!
I would say that the biggest thing is that I know that there is a possibility that people will not choose me solely because of the color of my skin. It could be because they feel awkward but love my work but can’t overcome the anxiety of working with a Black person, or they don’t see me as qualified as my white peers at all. I’m not sure, as I haven’t tried to survey it, but I am mindful that it probably happens and it makes me extra thankful for those who do see me as fit to capture their biggest moments.
I love being able to learn about people’s lives and cultures. I always make a point to capture that as it’s important because it’s part of their story!
My kids are 10, 6 and 4. We chat about some current events — age-appropriate of course. I let them know that they are beautiful and that if they see someone doing or saying something wrong, they need to stand up against it.
We may have come a long way from Jim Crow laws, but we still have a long way to go. It’s going to be a painful transition, but I believe that it’s possible for our country to be changed for the next generation — my kids’ generation.
I was hit by a car back in 2003! I knew from then that I had a purpose and that God had big plans for me. It was a wild experience for sure, and I still have memory issues from hitting my head on the windshield. I’m OK and luckily only had a bad concussion and some scarring from scrapes I got.
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