This week we sat down with Texas photographer, Rachel Van Chau who recently won one of our weekly book giveaways in the SeniorInspire group.
SeniorInspire Nice to meet you, Rachel! Tell us a little bit about your business.
Rachel Van Chau Reflections by Rachel Van Chau, doesn’t really feel like a business - It is truly a work of the heart. I have been passionate about capturing images for more than half my life. I took the leap of making this my full time gig. I wish I would have made the leap a long time ago. I live with my family in League City, Texas. The surrounding big cities of Houston and Galveston have given and continue to give me canvases to truly create great portraits.
SI On your website it says you've been known to jump up and down when you capture a photo that excites you. Tell us about a photo you've jumped up and down over.
RVC I would have to say my most recent session with a senior who described herself as shy and uncomfortable was one of those moments. Within 5 minutes of the session, she was comfortable and amazing in front of the camera. We were both jumping for joy and celebrating the images we captured. From graffiti walls in Baytown’s Umbrella Alley to the beautiful landscape of sea side Seabrook, we were able to make her feel incredibly beautiful and confident.
SI Who are your photography heroes?
RVC This is an easy question to answer. My #1 hero would be Trisha LaCoste. Trisha is a local Houston Photographer who is a true inspiration. Her guidance and ability to educate is amazing. She is always challenging me and other area photographers to improve and to be the best YOU. She is the true meaning of a servant heart. I will always be grateful for her time, talent and friendship.
SI Don't tell us who, but have you ever been to a photography workshop you were completely disappointed in?
RVC I really cannot remember a workshop in which I didn’t at least walk away with some knowledge. Approaching every workshop with the mindset that there is always something to learn. From a bad experience to an amazing idea, I think you are always learning and growing.
SI Is there a senior fashion trend you'd like to see disappear?
RVC I have to ask the cap and gown manufacturers, what is up with the seam of the hat being in the center of the forehand. WHY??? It really just is so distracting in photos if it is not in the right position. As fast as fashion trends come and go, I really don’t have time to wish them away. I would have to say working with what makes the client feel comfortable is most important. In style or not in style, “is the client comfortable” would always be my go to answer.
SI I love Chicago pizza! What's your favorite food that you believe is best only in Texas!
RVC Being an Italian and Cajun raised girl, I love spicy, rich foods but nothing beats Tex-Mex of course. Here in Galveston/Houston area we are spoiled with so many choices for good restaurants that the list could be endless. Oh and did I say I really LOVE food, any type of food.
SI What's your favorite and least favorite movie?
RVC My favorite movie is Urban Cowboy, and the worse movie is Urban Cowboy. The movie is just the worse of the best country bar scenes. Who doesn’t like two stepping with a Budweiser in hand while you find the love of your life? Bull riding, honky-tonk, oil fields and cowboys, are just some of what Texas has to offer. The accents are bad and the plot even worse, but it is a love story with a happy ending. I am telling my age, but John Travolta is one of my all-time favorite actors and he even says this is one of his worse movies. “All cowboys ain’t dumb. Some of them got smarts real good, like me!”
SI Believe it or not, Urban Cowboy is a favorite of mine too. I've tried for years to get my wife to let me put Sissy and Bud license plates in the back window of our car, but she's just not a fan.
Thanks for sitting down with us! See you in the group!