Professional Photographer Portland Oregon 97212

About Irene Elena Rose

Welcome to my website! Perhaps you’d like to know something about me…  To begin with, if life has taught me anything, it’s that good times are serious business.  Early on, luck or divine providence (maybe it’s the same thing) dropped some skilled, excellent teachers into my life. They knew more than just the technical side of this artful craft known as “social functions and portrait photography.” They taught me how to focus on what’s REALLY important.

  • Take great photos; make the client feel terrific;
  • Keep up with trends and styles;
  • Take great photos; make the client feel terrific;
  • Teach others and learn from others;
  • Take great photos; make the client feel terrific;
  • Learn the rules and don’t be afraid to break them;
  • Love being a photographer; and most important:
  • Take great photos; make the client feel terrific!

“I love Irene’s photography. She is so friendly and nice, and her work is highly professional. Our entire family was very impressed. We looked great.”   Becky I.

“I have never enjoyed photos of myself until I had them done by Elena Rose Photography. Very professional, beautiful work. I recommend her every chance I get!”   Susan S.

That’s you. After all, you want your photographer to be relaxed, focused, skillful and easy to work with, whether it’s your office Christmas party, the wedding you’ve been planning since you were six, a boudoir portrait because you realize just how much hotter you are at forty than you were at thirty, or a picture of your ‘59 Caddy Fleetwood taken reverently at the “magic hour.”

The fact is, if I’m organized, relaxed and focused, you’ll like having me as your photographer. But please…  lest I accidentally minimize what goes on behind the scenes… may I assure that it takes a lot of skill and experience to make it all look easy. (You can relate. You’re good at what you do, right? If I saw you at work, wouldn’t I be impressed and say, “Wow, she makes it look so easy?”) So I mix up a nice blend of technical expertise, personal style, hard-earned experience and social skills… and the result is a photographer who delivers the goods and makes you happy at the same time.

Look, you can see from my website that I’m a good photographer, but years from now, you should smile fondly when you remember working with me. I’m the one vendor at your wedding or celebration who will be with you more than any other. More than the caterer, more than the DJ, more than the limo driver, more than the stylist… you get the idea.

So why me? Why should you hire me? Well, I’ll tell you… 
To begin… I’m organized. Both parents and three grandparents were in the military, and if that weren’t enough, I had twelve years of parochial education with the good nuns. Room inspections, locker inspections, hemline inspections; inspections of all kinds were a routine, unannounced fact of life. I didn’t like the intrusions, but I did learn that being organized was a kind of freedom, because I never had to waste time tracking down my stuff or worrying about unannounced scrutiny. Things were always where they were supposed to be. (OK, not “always,” but almost always. Really.)

So when I show up at your portrait session, wedding, party, reunion or picnic, I will have two of everything in perfect working order, just in case something breaks. You see, it’s all about you; and being organized assures both of us that I will be able to take great pictures and make you feel terrific.

Wait, there’s more; someday I should thank all those strict people around me during the formative years because they cultivated a decent sense of humor in me. What better way to get through more than a decade of stern, unsmiling, unforgiving nuns than simply to say, “Yes, Sister,” then crack a joke? (Out of earshot, of course. I was happy, not stupid.)

Now what have we got? Organized, relaxed, focused. So far, so good. “But,” you might be wondering, “How did all this develop into a photography business?” (Can I tell you even if you weren’t wondering?) It didn’t at first. After all that formal education and personal humor development, I gravitated to the travel business. At the time, it was the perfect job for me because I could be both organized and entertaining. I didn’t see it coming, but sometime during those global years I realized I had received another gift: I became resourceful. Really resourceful. There’s nothing like landing on a Caribbean island with forty middle aged executives who are used to getting their way, then having some hapless airline employee whisper to me, “We can’t locate your group’s luggage.” Really, that happened. On the charming island of Jamaica. Something like that will make you resourceful or will make you cry. Long story short: I didn’t cry.

There were other things, too, that happened during those years, and if you’re interested, I’ll tell you a few stories sometime, but my point is this: unforeseen troubles make people able to think on their feet, and it helps tremendously when you work as a wedding and event photographer. For example, sometime I’ll tell you about the bride who knocked herself out a half hour before the ceremony. Funny story, complete with paramedics, a bump on her forehead you could hang a coat from, and hastily cut bangs. But I digress… 

For thirteen years the travel business had me in its clasp. Since I was visiting foreign lands, I bought a nice camera and actually learned how to use it. I began writing travelogues for the trade papers, and the publishers were more inclined to print my stories if I included a couple of pictures. Then one day a friend asked me to bring my camera to her wedding. I remember she added a little nervously, “Just in case the guy I hired screws up.” Taking pictures of pretty people wearing pretty clothes in a pretty place? I readily agreed. Turns out her photographer did a fine job and she was happy with his pictures, as well as the ones I took. Soon after that, other people started asking me to take photos of their kids, their pets, their parties, and one thing led to another: the joys of self-employment. Which, if truth be told, felt a lot like unemployment for those first few years, but that’s what life savings are for, right?

I struggled to make a go of it, but it was during this time that I got lucky and met several experienced photographers who were generous with their knowledge. They willingly shared inside tips and technical expertise and gave me encouragement when I needed. I stuck with it, although I did scrimp a lot in the beginning to make ends meet. But largely because of the whole process, I’ve learned, grown, become solvent, and evolved… not just as a photographer, but as a professional and as a woman; and just in case you’re wondering, I am still organized, I do still have a decent sense of humor and I’m more resourceful than ever.

So here I sit, twenty-plus years later with a website and a lot of client files. If I’m really lucky, your name will be on one of them soon. You’ll be happy if you hire me as your photographer. I’ll take great photos and make you feel terrific, just as my mentors taught me. Because life is full of good times; and as we all know, good times are serious business.

Wishing you perfect light,
Irene Elena Rose
Elena Rose Photography
Simply beautiful photographs… for all occasions!

2704 NE Stanton Street     Portland Oregon 97212-3537

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