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James Hays

I am a portrait photographer based in Roseville, CA. If I had to describe my style in one word it would be romantic. I don’t shoot with the rules in mind but try to just stick to what is lovely to me. If I can stay just outside of reality with my images then they are a success. Passion first, vision second, and the rest you can pick up on the way.

How did you get started in the business? Who helped/guided/mentored you?

My wife Stefani recognized my passion for this craft and took a chance I was not willing to take on my own. We started in the basement of our home and have recently moved to a studio location. There are so many who I have learned from these past 9 years but if an easy standout is Matthew Jordan Smith who said “if you keep shooting what you love, eventually you will find people who value it.

How many After Dark Events have you attended and what’s your favorite moment?

This will be my sixth AD and still my favorite moment was in Portland. It was about 11pm and Kelly had one of the models all ready to go with no one to shoot her. She pulled me aside and asked me to take the model out. Within minutes we had an impromptu night shooting pod going with a good group of people.

Why is education important to you? How long have you been teaching? What made you get into teaching? What do you get out of being a mentor?

Education keeps us fresh. Education keeps us from getting stagnant. I have been teaching for a few years now and I enjoy being a part of the community that helped me grow. Teaching also really helps me look into my own process and makes me take better notice of what’s working and what could be more efficient. Being an AD mentor is in another league and I am easily learning as much as I’m teaching.

What are the top 5 skills you’ll be teaching at After Dark?

  • Available light shooting
  • Consultations
  • Mini-Sessions

  • Outdoor lighting
  • Senior posing/shooting

Contact Info:


Seniors Website

Facebook Enchanted Images

twitter: @enchantedimages

Fun Facts:

  • Canon and Fuji shooter
  • I shoot studio and location work
  • I like pretty things.

Majority of Business:

  • Portraits: Babies/High School Seniors


  • Studio strobes
  • Flashlight
  • Speedlights
  • Reflectors