Archive for December, 2013

From Apprentice to Artist to Businesswoman

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After uploading a teaser of photos from a recent engagement shoot to her Facebook page, Evelyn Alas checks another five star review for her business.  Evelyn is making her mark on the commercial photography world, but she made her mark on the Arts on the Block family first.

Evelyn was one of the apprentice artists during AOB’s very first year.  While an apprentice, Evelyn learned job skills through the arts and worked on commissions for real clients.  Evelyn worked on a project called “Unsung Heroes” that depicted real and metaphoric figures pertinent to the development of Silver Spring in life-sized mosaic forms.  Evelyn learned from AOB lead artist Carien Quiroga to appreciate the nuances of creating public art.

Evelyn also enjoyed the field trips to local art studios and museums that exposed her to different mediums and styles.  “Not everyone’s going to be a fine art painter and stay with it.  There’s public art, graphic design, poetry,” Evelyn explains, “It’s not just creating your own art, it’s creating art for other people.”  This philosophy guided Evelyn well as she built her business.  Evelyn Alas Photography specializes in weddings, engagement shoots, and special events.  When asked what draws her to photography, Evelyn answers, “The ability to tell a story with an image without using words.” Evelyn’s passion fueled her drive to pursue a future and business in art.

Evelyn used what she learned from AOB to succeed at the University of Delaware, where she earned her BFA in Photography and minor in art history.  There, Evelyn strengthened her ability to articulate her artistic process. It can be difficult to stand out in a field where customers are driven by budget and not necessarily quality.  To showcase her assets, Evelyn utilizes those same skills she developed with AOB.  “I try to explain [to clients] the background to my art.  I don’t have a cookie cutter formula for their wedding or event. I take into consideration who they are and how they want to be represented,” Evelyn says confidently.

“I can be very creative in wedding portraits, that’s something that’s caught people’s attention when they see that I do things a little different.”

Evelyn’s work has indeed been turning heads, like at a recent Peter Pan inspired wedding, featured on Style Me Pretty.

AOB often hires Evelyn to photograph some of their ongoing projects and finished products.  “It’s been amazing that Arts on the Block continues to help and support me.  It’s kind of full circle, this relationship that we have,” Evelyn reflected.  She has these words of wisdom for our current apprentices and all young people looking to pursue a career in the arts: “Any learning experience, either work related or in general, is valuable and you should treasure that. “Don’t be trapped or single minded, be open to exploring other mediums. Soak in what other people teach you.”

You can find Evelyn Alas Photography on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and the company website.

There isn’t much of 2013 left, so we ask that you make a donation before the new year to guarantee that Arts on the Block will be able to keep making a difference in the lives of young artists, just like Evelyn.