The Girl Behind the Camera

I know a lot of y’all know me. Just a blessing (or hazard…you decide) of small town life. But there are those few of y’all that don’t know much about me. Maybe. I figured I would introduce the girl that is behind the camera and blog. Or at least give you a little more then what is on my about me page.

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First things first.***
My name is Sami Mastrario. Yes, my name is short for Samantha but hardly anyone calls me that except when my daddy introduces me to others. Just one of his quirks because he never actually calls me that. He usually called me “Sam-o-la.”

and my last name, well you may be able to guess that it is Italian. It is muy complicado for many people to pronounce, much less spell. So I made the decision to go with the business name SamiM Photography. I was born in the city of Atlantic City, New Jersey (think Miss America pageant, casinos and the boardwalk, and of course the game of Monopoly.) However, I was a wee babe of 1 when my family packed up and left Yankee territory for the grand ol’ South. I have been living in South Georgia ever since and it is just wonderful!

I guess you could call me a portrait photographer. I specialize in newborn, tiny humans, and families but I really love to photograph most genres of photography. Variety is the spice of life, right? However, I have a bachelor’s and master’s in history from Armstrong State University in Savannah. I had plans on becoming a professor of history but started doing photography in 2011 when my nephew Wyatt was born and it kinda grew from him being my guinea pig to a business with my own studio. By the way, go check out my labor of love here. I am so proud of that space. Not even going to lie!

My only “training” in photography was a film photography class and a digital photography class in college. I also purchased the wonderful Rachel Vanoven eWorkshop and it was literally life changing. I self-taught myself everything else I know regarding camera basics, photoshop, and running a business (meaning I practiced, read, google’d, and youtube’d pretty much everything I know.) It has been a tough journey but it has been so incredibly rewarding and I have met so many great people I now call friends.

Now for a lightning round list of things I dislike/fear and then a list of things I love. I weirdly and passionately dislike:

  • needles, for obvious reasons.
  • all birds. they are little dementers flying around. bye felicia.
  • nutcrackers. seriously they have a major creepy factor that totally stemmed from a nightmare where they chased me. *shudder* My evil family and friends love to just chase me with them around the holidays. What a gem of a family, right?
  • almonds. actually all nuts except boiled peanuts but I particularly dislike almonds. bleck.
  • fish and other seafood. That smell – it is just not happening.
  • I fear falling to my death. Heights do not bother me as much as long as there is the security of a 12′ fence that stops me from my impending doom. Those glass skywalks, yea, I will leave that for you daredevils. Cannot even think of them without getting the heebie jeebies.
Things I lurvveeeeeee:

  • Books. I love reading cheesy, happy-ending romance novels. I just want all the love. I just enjoy reading so very much. It’s up there with photography in my major likes category. So far, I have read 39 book this year alone!
  • Notecards. There is something so simple and sweet about a handwritten card justnotecards 200sent to tell someone thanks or that you are thinking of them. Maybe it is a Southern thing? Anyways, I hoard notecards. Every single time I go to Target, I buy a pack.
  • Traveling. I love flying so much. I love Europe even more. I have been twice and want to go back so very much. But I also love stateside traveling. I have gone to 41 states with my moma and sisters throughout the years. (iPhone photos of the Grand Canyon from my latest trip with my moma back in May 2015)
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  • speaking of my evil family members, they just happen to be my favorite people in the whole world. Of course there is moma and daddy. Then my two older sisters Sarah (who is basically my twin 4 years apart) and Suzi. There respective husbands Justin and David are the brothers I never had growing up but whom I love dearly. Then my three rotten nephews Liam, Wyatt, and Paxton. and I have a little niece, Ms. Georgia Lou *finally* on the way due May of this year!
  • Pretty much anything to do with Harry Potter, I love. I am a true Potterhead, y’all! #Always #RowlingsForPOTUSifSheWasAnAmerican
  • I love to go antiquing/junking/thifting. Give me all the old stuff.
Got a question you have been dying to ask me? I love sharing my tricks of the trade so feel free to ask. No, really- I know this was as long post but I want you to talk to me so I don’t feel like an even bigger weirdo talking to the internet who doesn’t care!

***If you said “I’m the realist,” we can be best friends. If you have no clue what that means, sorry for making you jump down and read this crazy comment, but I will still be your best friend if you want!

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