In 1988 she became only the second woman photographer to ever shoot for Playboy Magazine; completing nearly 600 editorial spreads over 12 years for the publication, and breaking through a barrier to give women a voice in the work that portrayed them. In this segment of our Trailblazers series our own Mia McCormick sits down with Lou and discusses topics that range from how Lou got started in photography to the lessons she learned from her time shooting for Playboy, and from the opportunities for growth that came from working in a demanding environment to how she continues to stay relevant to such a wide variety of clients.
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With a start in photography that began in high school, Lou continued her photography education in college where she immersed herself in black and white film, manual cameras and becoming a master printer. This provided the foundation for taking on photography jobs after graduation, and eventually shooting for Playboy.
Taking a big risk in your career is often fraught with concern and worry about the path you are taking and what it may cost, but looking back you can see how much richer your life has been as a result of going down that road.
Each photo shoot was a challenge and an opportunity to work with new people and learn their stories. Over time these experiences became more and more empowering to continue to grow and increase the creative challenge.
Having a wide variety of clients requires a diverse set of skills, but provides the benefit of a diverse set of income streams, which can really help a photographer reach financial success. Finding time for creative holidays can be a challenge, but essential for growth and generating new ideas.