by Julie Ann Madden
“As a child, I was always getting into trouble for using too much film,” said Seven Acre Photo owner Elizabeth “Liz” Less of Akron. “I’m so thankful for digital (photography) now.”
“We’d always set up our Barbie (dolls) in family settings,” she said about her childhood passion with a camera.
And she set up her Breyer horse collection and trolls, too, which are proudly displayed in her new photography studio in her home at 821 E. Mill St. — which she and her husband, Mitch, and two daughters, Hannah and Quinn, moved into the week before Christmas.
Less began Seven Acre Photo three years ago when she and her husband, Mitch, lived in rural Akron.
“We had a spare room — before our second kiddo arrived — in our old house,” said Less.
In the room, she set up a king-sized bed sheet between two ladders and added a photographic lamp.
One of her friends’ two-year-old twins were her first subjects.
“I’ve always been interested in photography,” said Less. “Looking back, it’s one of those things I should have done in the first place.”
However, the Le Mars Community School Class of 2002 alum became a registered radiologic technologist through Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls, S.D., first.
“It’s a different type of photography — taking X-rays,” she explained, adding she still works two days a week at the Akron Mercy Medical Clinic.
But then it’s time for her real photographic love.
“I pretty much do everything: families, senior portraits, engagements and weddings,” said Less, adding she also does all of her own editing and has a website where people can order prints from. “I line up sessions when it works for my customers. I’m really flexible about that.”
Taking photographs of newborns is her favorite, she said. “They are the hardest to photograph but they are my favorite.”
“You forget how fast they grow,” said Less, “and they aren’t that little that long. I really like to grab that moment.”
“And I’ve always been a baby hog,” she laughed, “and that helps.”
Although she admits she’s a perfectionist when it comes to the final photographic print, Less said she is really “laid back” during a photo shoot.
“I try to get people at their most natural,” she explained. “Such as with smiles, especially kids — I just talk with them and just shoot photos as they interact with me. It’s more relaxing for them and that’s when you get the really good photos.”
“I have to have the final print look just the way I want them to look,” said Less, adding her husband, Mitch, teases her she even takes out dust specks in the background of her photographs.
For example, the vintage photographic look is really popular right now, but Less has her own version of vintage in that she likes to keep the subject the center point of the photograph, not obscured by a lot of textures in the photograph.
“I like the old-fashioned feeling of them,” said Less. “I also love black-and-white photography.”
“I put a lot into my photography,” she said. “I try to make it as personal as I can.”
To set up a photo session, call Liz at 712-539-2767.