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Meet Trailblazer Brook Mrkvicka

Today we’d like to introduce you to Brook Mrkvicka.

Brook, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I fell in love with photography when I was very young. My father was a professional photographer and I was used to him frequently peering out from behind a lens. My father was my hero (which little girls isn’t?) and I wanted to be just like him. So, in high school, when I saw that they offered a photography class, I jumped at the chance. We had a darkroom, complete with a revolving door and everything. I loved spending hours in there, creating… such a magical room, where images would slowly appear on paper out of nowhere.
After high school, I found myself working at studios taking portraits of children, families, etc. I was working with backdrops, lighting, and posing people. I was on the other end as well, processing film photos. I did both for a while, but then later moved on to freelance photography of concerts and musicians. I really enjoyed the fast pace and the special effects of lighting during shows. Being young and having a lot of free time, the nightlife of concerts was very appealing to me. I had my photos featured in the music zines, and also in a couple CDs. It felt wonderful to see my work in print.

Later, I would focus on that aspect more, when I was working as a freelance photographer with an online news source through AOL. I was photographing local community news and events covering high school sports, plays, community art events. I immensely enjoyed this position, as it helped me to really become more acquainted with people in my community. I was out meeting people, photographing them and interviewing them for the articles that I would write to accompany my photos.

Throughout the years, I have grown quite fond of being outdoors in nature, and have since focused my business on portraits of families, children, and high school seniors in nature. My specialty is observing and documenting people interacting with nature. I love to draw out the beauty of nature and the beauty of someone’s personality during my photo sessions. I like to get to know my clients and showcase different aspects of their personality. Nature has a calming effect on the soul and I love to capture the light.

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?
I would say it’s been a winding path for me. I have been this way and that way and just enjoying where this journey has led me. I think the best advice for people who are just starting out would be to really stick to your passion and focus on doing what really makes you happy. For one to be truly happy, it has to be a vocation and not just an occupation or profession.

Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
I specialize in fine art nature photography with or without people. I feel most at home, when outdoors and my camera lens is my scope with which I interact with this world. Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. I like to focus on light in this world.

As a photographer, I am most known for my outdoor sessions. My goal is to inspire everyone to come back out to play. With my nature/travel photography, I bring the outdoors in for those who might not be able to travel or to inspire others to venture out and explore. With my portraits of people, I provide time away from technology and the stuffiness indoors, where my clients are free to intermix with the elements and soak in the light. I take a natural approach and rely on letting people find themselves through fresh air, the earth supporting them and the sun’s light filling their hearts…

Finding a mentor and building a network are often cited in studies as a major factor impacting one’s success. Do you have any advice or lessons to share regarding finding a mentor or networking in general?
I have joined photography clubs and groups in the past where we had get-togethers to work on certain lighting and shooting situations. I would look forward to the monthly shootouts with models and had a great time learning from others in the industry. It feels wonderful to have a community of photographers who support one another’s passions and help to lift one another up. I had also joined a women’s networking group and made a lot of important contacts and fulfilling friendships through that experience as well. I feel it is very important to put yourself out there and get to know your community.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Brook Mrkvicka Photography

Getting in touch: VoyageChicago is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Tony m

    January 11, 2019 at 9:25 pm

    Very talented photographer in many ways !!!!!

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