Sasha & Yaneck WASIO are wedding and portrait photographers based in Orange County (Irvine, CA) with over 10 years of professional experience. They are the founders and owners of WASIO photography (weddings), WASIO faces (headshots & portrait), and WASIO Master Prints. Yaneck has the honor to be VP of the photography competition for Professional Photographers of San Diego County (PPSDC). In 2018 he won Portrait Photographer of Year from PPSDC. Follow them through Facebook, Instagram @wasio_faces, and their professional website.
I would describe my style of photography as…
My photography constantly evolves as I mature as a photographer, develop new artistic sensibility, and of course learn new techniques. In the last few years I would describe my style mainly by words such as clean, structured, natural, and hopefully timeless. My brand inspiration has been Chanel for many years. I love their branding and design that’s often ahead of time yet doesn’t age and is truly timeless.
What was your first camera, and how’d you get started in photography?
My first camera was an old Russian film camera Smena. I received it from my parents for my first communion back in Poland. My dad was a big photography enthusiast and photographed mainly portraits. I remember him spending endless hours in the ‘darkroom’ which was our bathroom that he often converted into a darkroom. I was always intrigued what he was doing there with a red light on. I loved the magical results of B&W prints he was making.
Why did you want to become a photographer?
Since my teenage years I wanted to be an artist. I just didn’t know the medium that will work the best for me. I didn’t pursue art education. Instead, I ended up with a bachelor and master’s in business management. All those years I continued photographing people because I was always fascinated by creating portraits of people I was meeting in different parts of the world.
What’s your most memorable shot or shoot, be it challenging to capture or interesting subject?
I think there are three sessions in my career that were the most meaningful and challenging at the same time.
The first one is our dog KenLee. We titled the photo “The Most Interesting Dog in the World.” Anybody photographing dogs understands how challenging it is to photograph puppies. Their attention span is practically nonexistent, and they are usually not trained yet. Adding to it the difficult pose we had for our dog and we ended up with a cool but challenging portrait of our Weim.
The second photo is a maternity photo of my wife Sasha when we were expecting our daughter Savannah. This was the first time I photographed the Milky Way. So, I had to do all the research when, where, and how to do it properly. We took this portrait in total darkness in the middle of nowhere. The portrait was even more meaningful because we had been trying to have our daughter for over three years.
The third photo is a portrait of our daughter Savannah. Of course, photographing children is fun and challenging at the same time. The reason why this shoot is so meaningful to me is because during that session our daughter started to walk for the first time.
What image are you most proud of from your photography portfolio?
I don’t think there is one photo that I am most proud of. We have been blessed with some of the nicest couples and portrait clients. Each portrait or wedding results in photos we are proud but most importantly in photos that our couples and clients love.
My dream gig would be…
My dream engagement would be to photograph for one of the big soccer brands and take portraits of some of their soccer players. I am a big soccer fan, dedicated to Poland’s national team and FC Barcelona.
My favorite piece of gear is…
It is hard to pick one piece of gear. Every item we use helps us either getting a better photo or making our life easier. I do, however, love my Canon Pro-1000 printer! This is the last step on producing beautiful prints for our clients and competition prints for other photographers. For many years printing has been frustrating but after we switched to the Canon Pro-1000 life has been so much less stressful. 😉
Do you shoot tethered?
Absolutely! We cannot imagine photographing any portraits or headshots without tethering to our laptops. Tethering helps us get the right exposure, composition, and sharpness. It also helps us generate more revenue because our clients love the instant results and purchase all the photos they love during the session.
Tethering is also a critical piece in our workflow when we photograph at conferences or big business meetings. Tethering allows us to instantly show the headshots and let clients get them right away through our kiosks.
My favorite piece of Tether Tools gear is…
What’s on your photography gear shopping list?
I’ve been searching for couple of years now for the Profoto small spot modifier. Unfortunately, it has been discontinued after Bowens went out of business (they were manufacturing for Profoto). I hope one day I will find a used one and create new portraits with that incredibly creative light modifier.
The best advice I can offer a fellow photographer would be…
Photograph a lot but with every session try to improve. Take a lot of workshops, learn from many people, but don’t try to copy exactly what others do. Take different pieces from your teachers and create something that is you as an artist.