Design Spotlight: Sue Shepard
Today, the Design Spotlight is shining on Sue Shepard of ABC by Sue – I like the idea of using photographs to spell words, it’s really cool.
I live in Southern California and I am a Marriage & Family Therapist. What I love about Alphabet Photography is that it gets me outdoors and looking at the world with a new perspective. I began doing it a little over three years ago. First I just wanted to see if I could photograph my own A-Z, but then I got hooked and saw letters everywhere I went and could not leave my house without my camera. Prior to this, the only pictures I ever took were of my nieces and nephew on holidays and the camera I owned could fit in my pocket.
I started by making a 40th birthday gift for a friend by framing some of my photos to spell out their last name. At the party, people wanted to order gifts for their friends and I was asked by an employee of the local School of Arts to sell my photos at their upcoming Holiday Boutique. Immediately I was in business and I had only showed up to show off my new hobby.
At my first event, it was humbling to see real photography students and their instructors buying my photos. I was embarrassed when one of them asked me what aperture I was shooting at and I had to admit that I didn’t even know what that word meant. They were shocked to discover that I had taken my pictures with a pocket sized point and shoot camera. I used the money I made from that show to buy myself a “real” camera.
At the end of August 2011, I discovered Greeting Card Universe and decided to see if I could use my letters to create greeting cards. I sold my first card two weeks after my store went live and I was hooked. One of the things I like best about GCU is that it’s all about the creativity and they take care of all the work. I am thrilled that I can create as many cards as I want because I don’t have to keep any inventory, haul boxes of cards to a boutique, or pay for printing or postage fees.
This “Thank You” card is my current best seller. I like it because it has some of my favorite letters. The “T” and “N” came from a pier in Santa Barbara and I love that I captured these letters with the ocean in the background. The “A” is a weathered bench I found while taking a walk on a pier in Maui. Each letter has a story that goes with it and I enjoy seeing them strung together with every card I create.