We had the good fortune of connecting with Ravina Kumar and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ravina, what role has risk played in your life or career?
This question is my Favorite! Word Risk- I always thought about this word as something dangerous connected to it or something that everyone should stay away from. When I found myself as a photographer I found myself too! I never thought I was one of the people who would be doing what I’m doing now for living. I used to live in 4 different countries since I was a kid I always was on the move but always around friends. For a very long time I wanted stable life with stable friends and school but it never happened. When I finally moved to America I had no idea how different my life would change. I used to work only for $10-15/h jobs and never thought about myself as someone who can achieve something big. Even though I finished my college in Russia and I degree I could easily go and have amazing job with great salary but it was too boring for me the degree I’ve got is not something that I would like to do I would probably cry at my work everyday if I would get job with degree I have haha When I was in college I’ve got my first camera Nikon d3100 with reason that I want more of my photos for social media like everyone else at that time but instead I started take photos of my aunt’s garden and random flowers. People did not believe it was my photos but for me it was just pictures I did not see anything special in it. When I moved to Florida I met girl who has been traveling on her car for almost everywhere in the US and I could’t believe that it’s even possible plus she was also photographer. It motivated me I’ve got excited about photography but a lot’s of people said it’s not serious job that I can’t make enough money with and it’s just a hobby. So I started take photos of my friends and then families and really got amazing results that even shocked me I couldn’t believe I did it all and people were like ‘who is this girl?’ A lot’s of my family live in Russia so I go visit there with my son every year and it really did affected the job when I used to work for someone. One year I came back from Russia and had no job, no money and I really didn’t know what to do with my life where to go. That’s when I decided to take a risk and spend money on equipment for photography. I started with families, portraits and events that was it for me I really liked it but the income was not enough. I’ve talked to a lot’s of people who were wedding photographers as I was interested if I should try to not but everyone said it was too stressful that they will quit so I kind of was scared of that for bit haha But then I got married and I really liked the preparation for it. I had no stress with meeting different people and looking for different ideas. Yes it was a lot but I really liked it. That’s when I decided I wanna try to be a wedding photographer. So I’ve got my first wedding in Jacksonville, FL I was so scared but it was super cool and everyone was very happy. The photos came out amazing and I got more excited to get more weddings! While I was looking for more couple to book I’ve got interested in nature photography. I grew up in the mountains so living in FL definitely got me missing the mountains and snow. So I went on the road trip with friends to Georgia and North Carolina. It was the first time I’ve ever got out with photographers and I wanna say it was amazing! I’ve learned how to just be alone with nature but also be able to capture it on camera. I got in love with nature and landscape photography! Since then I decided I wanna go on the road trips more often not on the plane but the car. Yes it’s gonna take more time and even more dangerous especially as I always was by myself but I’ve learned so much! I enjoyed every minute. On the road I woke up everyday in different places and always had someplace to go and explore. Meet new people and get in some crazy situations and adventures. Sleep in the car and tent along with bears and snakes haha Yes it is a risk but I will do it again and again! Because that’s what helped me to be better person and better photographer. I’ve met so many people and have so many stories to tell. With no matter what situation we have even if it’s not photography taking a risk is something I will recommend to everyone. If we never take a step we never will know if that’s something for us or not. Maybe that’s exactly what we’ve been looking for!
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve always was an art person. There was never a good math situation in my life even on calculator I will still make mistakes. Although my right side of the brain always there for me. Since I was a kid I always was on the scene singing and playing on piano. I love music and I know music love me back haha. When I was in College I added more instruments to my life experience. I’ve learned how to play on guitar and sing and finished theater school at the same time. But never thought I can make it serious for living since no one in my family is singing or painting so there was no motivation. But when I got camera I knew there was something special in it. You know what they say you need to drive car first to feel so you can decide whether you like it or not. So same I felt about the camera. Every time I took it to take a photo I felt the view through the lens so it was easier sometimes to even look at the world with lens view. With time it became an art for me. I could create something from nothing. Even in the small dark place I could find something to take photo of and create not just a photo but the scene from something alive. Every photo needs to have it’s personality the mood. Photos needs to smile and scream and cry. Not when you just look at it because of the view but because of the way you see it. The photo should have emotions and people who look at it should have feelings when they look at it. That’s the goal for me and my business. All the photos of the weddings has different emotions and our jobs as photographers is to make the photos make real. I love nature as well and a lot’s of people think there is nothing to take photos of.. But how can be there nothing?! The sunsets are different everyday, The sunrise gives us every day new day with amazing colors.. The mountains are surround us by unreal view around us with fog between them. Higher mountains have snow peaks and touch the clouds.. The Cloudssss.. I mean how can this even be real!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’ve been thinking about it actually. My best friend live in another country so when she will visit me I already have some sort of plan haha Depends where I will live at the time. But now I live in Florida. So the very first thing I would do is to take her to the beach at the west coast to Siesta Key it’s my favorite beach. The next day I will show her the springs that we have. I mean it’s crazy how beautiful the springs are here. And the day after it I will take her to the Key West. It’s a not short trip but who said we don’t wanna just ride around?! The absolutely Yes will take Disney World ! I wanna show this place to every single human on earth I grew up on Disney movies it’s incredible to be at the real Disney and meet characters. Absolutely Yes to the Universal! We love rollercoasters so we will scream from happiness together so as from adrenalin we will get lol
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’ve got the camera as not a serious equipment at my very first time no one recommended it but I never thought I will be business LLC owner. My mom owns a business and she is always there to help me with business and marketing with no matter when and where she will always help with it even when I don’t ask. Shout out to my cool mom!