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Blair Phillips Photography moving to larger location

By Susan Shinn
sshinn@salisburypost.com
LANDIS ó Envision a photography studio with nine different sets, elaborate crystal chandeliers, silver leather chairs and metallic teal and silver paint.
Now envision being in downtown Landis.
Blair Phillips Photography got its start here five years ago, and Blair and Suzanne next month will move into a new studio at 117 S. Central Ave., two doors down from their original location.
Blair draws customers throughout southern Rowan County, Charlotte and beyond. Three years ago, he was able to quit his full-time job in the glass business.
“When your other job is costing you money, that’s when you know the time is right,” says Blair, 31.
“We didn’t do things haphazardly,” says Suzanne, 30.
“We wanted to go about it the smart way,” Blair continues. “People wrapped their hands around it and supported us.”
Over the past several years, Blair has made a name for himself as a photographer ó and has developed a look he likes to call “eclectic elegance.”
One glance at his work, and you know it’s a photo from Blair Phillips Photography.
Think dramatic. A bride posing in front of a junked car. Families sitting on the steps of an abandoned house. A high school senior standing in a lake.
Blair stays busy.
He and Suzanne now shoot 40 to 60 weddings a year, plus 200 studio sessions.
Twelve-hour days are the norm for the couple, who say they enjoy being together 24/7.
“We still, like, love each other,” Suzanne says.
Blair laughs at himself when he says he gets chill bumps sometimes talking to clients. He’s that excited and passionate about his work.Not only is he getting local and regional attention, he and Suzanne have been a semifinalists in the Best of Weddings, an international photo competition. He just recently discovered that he’s been asked to be a speaker for the Wedding and Portrait Photographers International convention in Las Vegas.”It’s a big deal for photographers,” Suzanne says.
But Blair says he’s not just about getting good pictures.
“I want to go for the whole experience,” he says, whether he’s working with children or brides.
Building relationships with his customers is his ultimate goal.
He wants to take amazing photographs, and he wants his clients to enjoy themselves.
“He’s pushing the limits for photography with sets, lighting, poses and equipment,” Suzanne says.
A new area which Blair is exploring is portraits for high-school seniors. He’s done about a dozen the last year or so ó his goal is to do at least 100 for the class of 2010.
“We’re well on our way,” Blair says.
The shoots are tailored toward the students ó whether it’s something underwater, on the lake or on the railroad tracks.
So far, Blair says, he and Suzanne have not had to deal with “Bridezillas.”
“If you trust Blair,” Suzanne tells brides, “your pictures will be phenomenal.”
She says he’s not afraid to speak up when the situation gets tense at a wedding ó using a lighthearted attitude to defuse the situation.
“We take it seriously, though,” Suzanne says of their work.
Another group which requires a lion’s share of patience is children.
“Patience is a virtue, and I am proud I have the amount of patience I do,” Blair says.
Amber Owen is a longtime client. She and husband Chris have two children, Madison and McGwire. Blair recently photographed Amber’s entire family, including her parents, brother and nephew ó eight folks in all.
“I’m just a fan of his work,” Amber says. “It’s just a different look. My kids think he’s a rock star. He’s wonderful with the kids. He’s very energetic, and he’s constantly thinking outside the box.”
Blair and Suzanne rented the old drug store building in Landis, until an opportunity came open to purchase four properties, including that property, Talbert’s Jewelry, the former barber shop building and the former Noah’s.
Being in the former dime store location will double their space.
“We’re gonna have a very chic, very posh, fresh studio,” Blair says.
Blair and Suzanne are going for Old Hollywood glamour.
“Who says a photography studio has to be boring?” Blair says.
For more on Blair Phillips Photography, go to www.blairphillipsphotography.com, visit Blair Phillips Photography or Blair Phillips on Facebook, or call the studio at 704-855-3656.

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