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Check Out Parys Wyatt’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Parys Wyatt. 

Hi Parys, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
I officially started my photography in January of 2020. Before then, I had never really had a creative hobby that was visually oriented. I had been in love with clothes for a while, but I never considered my interest a possible career path. I went into my freshman year of college (2015) as an International Studies and French double-major with a minor in Arabic. You could not have told 2015 Parys that she wouldn’t be translating for the UN by 25. However, about 2 years and a few failed courses later, International Studies gets dropped. French remained constant, but the minor got switched around a few times. At one point I was an Art History minor, and some of those courses really cracked my world right open. Granted, I still failed some of them, but they were still interesting! Somewhere around this time, I get my first camera; a birthday gift from my brother and my mom. I used it to do little solo shoots in my neighborhood, but when I brought it with me to school, it didn’t get much play. I was really just in my head. Fast-forward to January 2020, I decide to start shooting other people. I had just gotten a 50mm lens for Christmas, and I was hype about the upgrade. I found some outdoor locations downtown, announced free photoshoots on social media, and got some practice in! Everyone involved was so encouraging, the experience made me feel warm. September of the same year, I styled and shot my best friend (@kayrochla) for my first official project. We really surprised me with that one. Between the end of 2020 and the beginning of 2022, the journey has been a mix of job-finding, friend-making, intuition-trusting, just-because shooting with my other best friend (@theyluvkay), and re-routing. 

I recently released my first major body of work, Threaded Together, a project that examined how five couples view style, and how each partner’s own sense of style compared and contrasted with the other. I did it as a last-minute way to showcase some work for Valentine’s Day. The whole process of putting the shoot together felt like I was falling. However, it forced me out of my comfort zone. I was reaching out to participants, touring studios, networking my ass off. Anybody who knows me knows how nervous I was for shoot day. But if they know me, they also know how fulfilling the experience was for me. Shoot day ended up being everything and then some. And the shots??? Somehow, all the technicalities I’d been struggling to understand (settings and lighting mainly) clicked just in time. Threaded Together is another milestone project for sure. 

Now, 2022 is 1000% portfolio year. My goal is to apply to the School of Visual Arts (SVA) for their grad Fashion Photography program. I know I’ll be there next year, but I’m very excited to see how the journey goes in the meantime. 

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
The journey so far has definitely been interesting. It’s a puberty, really. With me being in the early years of my career, everything I’m experiencing right now is very new. One major struggle I’ve been dealing with is just not betting on myself. I am definitely an overthinker, and many times it’s led me to back out instead of jumping in. To combat this, I told myself that 2022 is the year of execution. It’s been a little uncomfortable, but going about creating in this way has already given me more milestones to celebrate, and allowed me to keep better track of my progress. 

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I’m a photographer and stylist, but I’m also learning website development. While my photography portfolio ranges a bit, its main focus is honestly anything fashion-based. 

Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
I’m definitely still in the phase of navigating these things myself, but social media and lateral networking have played a huge role in my ability to expand my creative circle. Sometimes I’ll also try to get myself out of my comfort zone by just walking into stores I find interesting and introducing myself. Sometimes it works out. Sometimes it doesn’t. 

Pricing:

  • Non-rented location shoot: $100/hr
  • Rented location shoot: $100/hr + rented location rate
  • Styling: $75/hr
  • Website development: $25/hr

Contact Info:


Image Credits

Kayla Williams
Kami
Elle Cook
IDK
Kay L.A.
Kholiwe
Jay
Sumayyah
Bryan
Alexis
Brandon

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