We had the good fortune of connecting with DaShaun Van Cleave and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi DaShaun, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I originally started taking pictures just for fun and it wasn’t until my friend told me that I was getting better and that I should start charging for my photos that I started to take it seriously. When I officially launched the business, my thought was to give college students and young adults like me the ability to have professional photos taken for an affordable price.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Being a full-time college student and managing my own business can become very difficult at times. Having to juggle classes, organizations, and a full-time business can definitely be time-consuming. Generally, I do most of my photoshoots alone, however, having a team or a partner can help save my time. Setting up for studio shoots, finding the right place outdoors, and breaking down equipment all take time. The post-production part takes the longest amount of time with editing. Different factors can affect how fast I edit a set of pictures from whether the shoot was outdoors or in a studio, or with an individual versus a group.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Jackson State Bridge. Some of my best work has come from there and it’s a beautiful view. Atlantic Station because when I visit there, there’s a variety of restaurants and shops to choose from and you have a nice scene of the city if you wanted to take a nice walk. They also have a movie theater, bowling alley, and other activities. Ponce City Market also has a variety of restaurants to choose from along with a nice walkway of graffiti that always displays new artistic work.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
To start out, I’d like to give a shoutout to all the people that have been modeled for me over the years. My mother, without her, none of the major foundations of my business would be established, let alone she bought me my first camera. My college community at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky, has constantly supported my work and has given me various opportunities that I would’ve never imagined when I first started taking pictures. Lastly, the various organizations that I’m affiliated with such as The Cherry Creative, ISEC (Intercultural Student Engagement Center), and my fraternity Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Incorporated, and many others that have been extremely supportive.
Linkedin: DaShaun Van Cleave
All images are products of DVanCleave Productions.