Today we’d like to introduce you to Sharla Ronée.
Sharla, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Art has always been a passion of mine, reaching all the way back to middle school. I was utterly obsessed with painting, charcoal drawings, and particularly fond of portraits. After I graduated from high school, life happened as it always does… and it kept happening. From escaping and surviving domestic violence to becoming a new, single mother at 22 – my focus fell away from art and creating, and instead landed on complete survival. In 2013, I purchased my first digital camera and immediately fell in love. Then, once again, life happened, and I sold my camera and never picked one up again… until late 2018.
And that’s really where it all began. In the past ten months, my camera has become the second extension of me – as soon as I arrive at a session and begin shooting, I feel like I have arrived home. In late 2018, my focus in photography switched gears yet again after attending a 3-person boudoir workshop. I had never been so excited to get home and start editing – in fact, I took almost 1200 photos in a 1.5-hour span! Since then, I really dug in deep and found that the boudoir/intimate portraiture niche truly is my passion.
As of today, I’m still a single mama/daddy – except now, I have two beautiful children who are my entire world. I’m still working full-time while working with clients at every possible moment on the weekends. I recently graduated with my Master’s degree, which has finally opened up extra free time to really start building my business the way I want to.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Honestly? No. I don’t think life is every easy, and when you broach the idea of becoming an entrepreneur, especially as a single mother living in San Diego, the challenges just feel that much more substantial. I’m reaching a point in my career where I need to make the choice between working full-time and maintaining a steady paycheck or having the faith in myself and my business to take that leap and start fully working for myself. I haven’t quite gotten there, but I’m holding out hope my day will come.
Please tell us about Lanora Ronée Photography.
Lanora Ronée Photography offers both fine arts portraiture, such as a few of the images you see below and intimate portraiture. I do enjoy working with couples, maternity, and families, but there is just something special about intimate portraiture, and I honestly have one of my biggest mentors, Marife, to thank for that.
Boudoir truly is my specialty. I see boudoir as healing. It’s raw. It’s intimate. It’s empowering. In the hour I spend with a client, I see all levels of emotion. I see the moment of absolute uncertainty. Of terror. Of shock. Of awe. Of wonder. Of happiness. And finally, of realization. The realization that she is doing this, she is overcoming her fears, and she is everything she never thought she could be. She is real, she is perfectly imperfect, and that is everything to her. That moment of empowerment truly transforms the broken, the hurting, the struggling. She becomes a completely different woman. It gives her a voice, and she is whole.
By speaking about my experiences as a domestic violence survivor with clients and on my Facebook, I have had women from all walks of life who’ve experienced all different struggles come to me for a boudoir session with one goal: the desire to heal. In fact, one of the sessions I have coming up is with an endometriosis survivor, and I truly cannot wait to work with her. My experience isn’t just the boudoir session and receiving images. It begins from the moment of inquiry, with building that connection and trust that intimate portraiture requires. I like to dig in and really find out the story behind the woman who I am talking to, what makes her tick, and what she is looking to gain out of her session. More often than not, it is very rarely about the photos themselves. It’s about the entire experience, about regaining confidence, allure, and realizing that despite our obstacles and challenges, we truly are perfect just the way we are.
I think that’s really what I am most proud of. Knowing that, regardless of what challenges someone has faced, their experience with me is truly empowering them.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
Oh goodness. I was such a bookworm when I was younger. I had a pretty tumultuous childhood, and reading allowed me to escape from my reality for just a little bit. Even today, I try to take the time to read for at least 30 minutes a day. It gives me a break from the craziness that is life.
- $325 session fee: includes professional hair & makeup, 1 hour photo session, access to client closet, and reveal session.
- Website: www.lanoraronee.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: lanoraroneeunleashed
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lanoraroneephotography/?modal=admin_todo_tour
@kinesthetic_kreations, Brooke Champlin, Danielle Unger