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Rising Stars: Meet Caroline Herring

Today we’d like to introduce you to Caroline Herring. 

Hi Caroline, so excited to have you on the platform. So, before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
From a very young age, I showed great interest in art and creative expression. My parents, ever-supportive and encouraging, gave me my first “real” camera in middle school. Soon after, nature photography evolved into self-portraits, photoshop experimentation, shoots with my older sister and her friends, and “formal” portraiture (as “formal” as you can imagine for a 15- to 18-year-old). 

My fixation on art and photography never wavered, so I decided to pursue Fine Art at Clemson University where I was able to dabble in an array of mediums and artistic processes—my favorites being film photography and installation sculpture. I was also lucky enough to score a brief internship at a local magazine in Greenville, SC which provided a huge shift in my creative outlook and education. 

In 2018, I graduated with an emphasis in Photography, packed my bags, and moved to Charleston where I took the road less traveled—spending the first 3ish years working in telecommunications research and marketing analytics as a means to land on my feet and save up. During that time, I continued experimenting with photography and formed a huge interest in the vintage/secondhand markets, DIY skateboarding community, and local music scene. 

Finally in August 2021, with the mental and emotional support of countless friends and family members, I decided to turn what had always been a dream into my full-time job: designing sets, concepts, and photographs that capture the story and essence of brands and individuals. 

I’ve been truly blown away by the businesses and individuals I’ve been able to work with in such a short amount of time—many of them rooted in causes I care for deeply: musicians, sustainable fashion brands, female-owned businesses, food & beverage bloggers, etc. 

I’ve also had the opportunity to display my personal work in local gallery exhibitions and get more involved in the Charleston art community—an outlet I felt I lost when I left Clemson and wasn’t sure where my art could live and grow. 

I knew early on I wanted to create work that inspires me, allows creative freedom, and gives others a voice and impact. I never thought I would be able to do all of that in such a short amount of time, so I’m thrilled to see how this journey evolves and who else I’ll meet along the way. 

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Oh gosh, SO rough! There were so many days, especially working in the corporate world, I thought I would never get to a place of true creative freedom and also making ends meet. So many times, I just wanted to trash everything and forget I wanted to be an artist in the first place. Doom scrolling, comparing myself to others, constantly on the verge of tears from sitting at a desk instead of following my dreams…all the while, I WAS pursuing my passion! I’d just lost sight of the fact that I was building the ground to stand on first. 

Let’s be real though, the road STILL gets bumpy. Some days I’m filled with anxiety and feel like I have no idea what I’m doing. I just constantly have to remind myself where I started and how far I’ve come. 

Truth of the matter: comparison is a thief joy and ALL good things take time! If your worst day now is better than your best day elsewhere, you’re headed in the right direction. 

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do? 

Commercially, my work focuses on fashion, product, branding, and creative portraiture. 

My latest personal work is a series of still life compositions comprised of florals, fabrics, and household objects. I’m currently working on expanding the series by entering women’s homes and creating still lives entirely from their personal belongings. 

I’d say I’m best known for my work with fashion and my heavy-set design. Most of my work, both commercial and personal, has an added layer of open-ended storytelling, and I strive for each photograph to create a moment of nostalgia, familiarity, or wonder. 

I’m most proud of the amount of collaboration that’s welcomed and executed in every shoot. When everyone walks away feeling more confident and seen than they were before, it reminds me why I love what I do and why I’m doing it in the first place. 

I’m also just blown away by the incredible people I’ve gotten to meet and work with so far. We’re all driven by our own sense of purpose and there so much beauty in weaving it all into one space. 

What are your plans for the future?
For now, I just want to keep working, experimenting, and growing in my creative process and business expertise. I have a LOT to learn as a new small business owner and growing as an artists will never be off the table. 

I’d like to continue creating more personal work and apply to more gallery spaces and exhibitions. I’m also planning to start working with film again and potentially get back into the darkroom. 

Nothing “huge” is coming down the pipeline just yet but I’ve got a lot of ideas marinating or in the works! 

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Caroline Herring

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1 Comment

  1. Anna

    March 31, 2022 at 9:57 pm

    Incredible!! Caroline is such an amazing artist, and charleston is lucky to have her!!

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