Photography makes dream a reality

A chocolate brown iris peers through a small rectangular window to spy the perfect moment. As that moment approaches, a fingertip meets a smooth, round button, and click. Story, memory, moment. Captured.

“Photography has always been a big part of my life because my grandpa photographed every waking moment of my childhood,” Ally Neutze said.

As a rising senior at Indiana University, Ally Neutze has strived to follow her passion as a photographer through starting her own business and trying to pursue photography as a career.

Neutze currently majors in journalism, with a concentration in photojournalism, and minors in business. In the second semester of her freshman year of college, she became an intern at Blueline Media Productions in Bloomington, Indiana, and after a year Blueline hired her as a photographer. She now works at Blueline as a lifestyle, sports, portrait, and wedding photographer.

However, after realizing that her ambitions extended beyond the city of Bloomington, Neutze wanted to demonstrate her abilities as a photographer to future clients and employers.

“I decided to go through with starting my own business so that my work was readily available and branded as my own work,” Neutze said. “I wanted to start my business while in college so that I could grow a brand and a name as well as create relationships with clients.”

There is often a spark that ignites a passion within someone. At a young age, Neutze was introduced to photography by her late grandfather.

“He bought me a polaroid camera when I was really small, then a small, inexpensive Olympus DSLR when I was about 12, and when I turned 17 he bought me a Nikon D7000, which is the same model he shot on,” Neutze said.

Two short days before her personal business, Ally Neutze Photography, went live on the internet, her grandfather passed away.

“To me, this business is the product of his passion that he passed down to me, and it’s a way for me to keep his memory alive,” Neutze said.

Neutze officially started her business in May 2015, however, the creation of the business was a learning experience. She had to learn about website code and design, which she later found to be a very beneficial experience, and she had to design her own logo.

“Starting a business entails designing a logo, choosing a color scheme, finding a font, creating a website, et cetera,” Neutze said. “I conceptualized logos for about four months before I finally settled on one because I wanted everything to be perfect when my website went live.”

Although she is proud of her personal side business, and thoroughly enjoys her job at Blueline, Neutze still tries to improve her time management skills.

“School and work has been a tough balance for me over the last couple of years,” Neutze said. “I am very lucky to work for a company that allows me to make my own schedule for the most part…and lets me work from home a lot.”

Neutze edits photos as a significant part of her job at Blueline and has had a range of different workloads.

Some shoots take 30 minutes to edit and other times they take days. They can range from 50 photos to 8000 photos,” Neutze said.

While she works, Neutze likes to take her puppy, Denali, who is a year old, to the studio. Other times, she will skip the studio and go straight home to do homework.

“I’ll edit photos at night because it takes less effort on my brain and quite honestly at this point it’s second nature,” Neutze said.

The developing photographer uses what she knows and what she loves to tell stories and create memories with her own style.

“I hate looking at family portraits where the families are arranged in awkward positions with fake smiles,” Neutze said. “I love capturing real moments between people.”

In the age of advanced technology, iPhones and apps have proven to be more easily accessible for the average American than a photographer. The quality of the cameras in phones are improving rapidly which consequently devalues photography.

“It is frustrating as a photographer because a lot of people do not understand the time, effort, and money that goes into taking photos and buying the necessary equipment and applications,” Neutze said.

However, photography is not a lost art. The beauty of forever securing a moment of time, or illustrating the immenseness of any scene, will never fade. Ally Neutze has made it her mission to follow her dreams and continue to seize important moments in a photograph, not only for herself, but for those around her.

“I love telling stories and photography is my way of doing that. I love capturing moments that people are going to cherish for a lifetime.”