I had a pleasure interviewing the founders of South Austin Portrait Party (SAPP)Juli Applewhaite, Jonathan Garza, and their partner Val Pereziden.
SAPP is a rising photography community where Juli, Jonathan and Val organize events for talented photographers, models, makeup artists to have creative photo shoots. All they expect from you is for you to have a great time, be yourself, and live your dream as a photographer, model, or makeup artist. SAPP is a pot of opportunities for everyone. It’s a platform for creating art, building up your portfolio, networking, getting connected with those who motivate you, getting more exposure, and most importantly it’s like a family. I love how well those three work together. They are people with great energy and great passion for what they do.
Let’s get to know them.
1. What exactly is SAPP?
It’s a community where photographers, models, interesting people, makeup artists, designers can make creative and fun photo shoots for themselves.
2. Who came up with this idea? And what inspired you to make it happen?
Juli and Jonathan came up with this idea (both photographers). We are tired of making something boring for others under the pressure of making a living, so we decided to create a community where we could take creative and fun photos for ourselves.
3. How did you guys get connected? What are your roles in this group?
Juli and Val were high school classmates. Juli met Jonathan at a charity event.
Juli: Founder/Photography coordinator/Photographer/Model
Jonathan: Founder/ Photographer
Val: Event coordinator/ Model scout/ Wardrobe /Photographer scout / Art director
4. What’s the purpose behind this group?
Our purpose is to help Photographers, models and makeup artists build up their portfolio; to get people connected; to have fun and take creative photographs, to give local store more exposure.
5. What did it take to get this group up and running?
Passion, interests, creativity, connections and networking.
6. What problems or difficulties have you encountered while starting this group?
It was difficult to coordinate events and people, because everyone has jobs, school and social life. They need to be passionate and interested enough to show up.
The idea of bringing money to this group for makeup artist was a problem. We thought that would suck the fun out of this community, so we dropped that idea.
7. Tell me what are the benefits of joining this group? Why would photographers, makeup artists, models want to join this group?
It’s a no pressure zone. People get to create their own vision. It’s about whatever they want to do, and they don’t need to please others but make their dreams come true.
8. Do you have any sponsors?
Precision Camera, alcohol Deep Eddy Sweet Tea Vodka will be our future sponsors.
9. What do you want to achieve through this group?
Val: Network. I like to bring people together.
Juli: Build a portfolio as model, and photographer.
Jonathan: Take more epic pictures, meet more epic people.
10. What’s the goal of this group in the near future?
More people, more and better pictures, and bigger events.
11. Where do you see this group in five years?
In an established event business.
12. What’s your personality individually and what makes you work well together?
Juli: I’m a pusher.
Jonathan: I just want to have fun!
Val: Networking guru.
(Val and Juli)
Artistic energy, different skills in different area, knowing different network of people make us work well together.
We are all driven, and have high energy.
13. What’s your business slogan?
Creating and capturing events that you can’t remember but don’t want to forget.
14. What would you like to say to our readers?
Juli: Come join us.
John: Be creative and have fun.
Val: Just show up.