WRITTEN BY: SKYLA BUONOPANE
Have you ever thought about a career in photography but never knew where to start? Or have you simply just wanted to take quality pictures, but lack the inspiration and necessary tools to do so? Well, aspiring photographer and longtime friend of mine, Maria Portalla, is here to help you be the amazing photographer you were always meant to be!
ALL IMAGES BY MARIA PORTALLA
At just seventeen years old, Maria Portalla never imagined that her days would be spent with a camera around her neck, messages filled with people asking to be photographed, and a passion for the visual arts. She used to just take pictures of sunsets on her iPhone camera and now has become an actual photographer. Photography is something that just kind of fell into place in her life at the perfect time.
“I never wanted to be a photographer, it happened unexpectedly. I live on a hill, and on the hill, there is a spot that has a beautiful view of sunsets and a large cross that sits in the distance. Some days I would just want to get away from people, so I would sit in that spot and take pictures. After a while, people started liking my sunset photos. This made me want to keep taking more. I would stop everything to run to the spot that overlooked the cross for the sunset every night. I was only taking them with my iPhone 6 at the time,” explains Portalla
Growing up in the streets of Boston, Portalla seeks inspiration for her photography in her very own city. You don’t need a fancy camera or a studio to be an amazing photographer- just a spark of creativity and a touch of amazing scenery to make for a beautiful photograph. Especially with the holiday season just around the corner, the city is booming with perfectly decorated staircases and bright lights just itching to be captured.
“Beacon Hill is my go-to place. I never leave there without good photos. It’s so beautiful in the fall because of all of the colorful leaves on the ground and the way people decorate the front of their homes. It is also a great place to take pictures for Christmas cards! The way that everyone decorates Beacon Hill during Christmas is quite similar. Often times, you’ll see candles in the windows and wreaths on the front doors and on every street lamp as well,” says Portalla.
Great photography isn’t as simple as seeing something and just snapping a photo- it is an art form that takes time, a little extra thought, and a passion. Portalla admits to sometimes taking dozens of pictures of the same place, scenery, or person before she finds one that she wants to share with the world. Once you find that one photo that you’re proud of, you can be on your way to photographer status!
Portrait of Anthony Tran Portrait of Christopher White
“Take your time. Amazing photos usually aren’t rushed. Have an open mind. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box and try things you haven’t done before in order to get a good picture. Lastly, have fun! If you’re not having fun, then you’re not doing it right.”
So, find that one thing that inspires you and grab a camera, or an iPhone and go capture it! Whether it be people on the streets, detailed buildings, or even just nature and the people in your life- don’t be afraid to share it with the world. You might even discover that this is what you want to do with your life.
Check out more of Maria’s photography on her Instagram: MARIACPORTALLA