Amy Koughan is a freelance photographer based in Los Angeles. She attended the Otis College of Art and Design and studied her craft there. But she says she was already a well-rounded photographer by the time she enrolled there.
“I really believe I was born to be a photographer,” she says. “I’ve always been drawn to pictures – taking them, and looking at them; especially the work of the masters.” The master photographers she most admires, she says, include Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, and Diane Arbus. A more recent photographer to seize her interest is the late Vivian Maier.
Asked what it means that three of the four photographers she mentioned are women, Amy Koughan just laughed. “Nothing,” she said.
Before embarking on her freelance career, she got her degree from Otis, and also worked for a time in a department store taking pictures of children. After that she worked as a technician in a photo lab. Taking pictures of children all day got to be monotonous, she recalls, and the job in the photo lab was far more interesting. “Even as digital photography was taking hold, we used average about a hundred rolls of film a day. And that was with a staff of three. That used to feel pretty rushed.”
Now, as a freelance photographer with a growing reputation, Amy Koughan says that she is always ready to drop whatever she is doing and head out on a shoot, if the terms are right and she isn’t breaking any important commitments.