By Tina Snell, Staff Writer
Lisa Sherwood Photography has moved to a new location in Randall. Formerly in a room off her garage, she now has loads of room on the second floor of the Old Creamery Quilt and Coffee Shop in the refurbished Randall Creamery.
Sherwood’s studio offers her clients the charm of yesteryear. The wide planked wood floors, the brick walls have a feeling of nostalgia, while the tall windows give the perfect light for her business.
The owner of the Creamery, Janelle Johnson, and Sherwood have been friends for many years. They were deployed to Iraq together. It was Johnson who convinced her the upstairs of the Creamery was the perfect spot for a studio.
Sherwood retired from the military after 20 years. She was deployed to Iraq in 2005 and spent 20 months there with the rank of major.
“That’s where I learned of my passion for photography,” she said. “I began working with pictures in 2004, purchased a professional camera before I left for Iraq and became quite serious while I was gone.”
While in Iraq, Sherwood was a logistics officer, taking care of the equipment moving in and out of the country. She also volunteered as a nurse at the combat hospital where she was stationed.
“I have a practical nursing degree from St. Cloud State,” she said.
Sherwood took care of and worked with many of the villagers. She said she took lots of pictures of children.
“I perfected my portraits while there,” she said. “Now that’s my passion.”
When Sherwood went to Iraq, she had one son, Calvin. She and her husband Sam, also in the military, wanted to grow their family. She also had the desire to use her new-found photography skills to open a business.
“It was a hard transition to working full-time in the army and letting it all go to pursue a dream, a passion,” she said. “But in order to be home more with my family, plus run a business, 20 years in the military was enough. Plus, I was worried about another deployment.”
Thursday, Sherwood gave birth to her fourth child, William. Besides Calvin, she and Sam also have a daughter Rhiya, 3, and another son, Beau, 2.
Sherwood took some photography classes at St. Cloud State and others online. She was also mentored by professional photographers in their specialties, particularly portraits. Her future plans include teaching others the nuances of photography.
“People are my passion,” she said. “I love getting to know them, getting them to relax wherever we are and helping them to have fun. I want to give them a gift of an amazing memory of their life, something they will always have.”
Sherwood opened her first studio in her home in Little Falls in 2009. She later built a studio in her garage. In three years, she transitioned to her new studio in Randall.
While Sherwood does weddings, she keeps them at a minimum. She prefers portrait work. She works with all ages, including high school senior pictures, families and custom requests. She also will work in a variety of locations, not just in her studio.
“Newborns are ideal, especially when not more than a week old,” she said. “After two weeks, they become more alert and lose their newborn look. I love the brand new look.”
Sherwood said it’s a great gift for a new parent.
“I am constantly learning and perfecting my techniques. It’s important to keep up with the trends. That will never end,” she said.
Sherwood, who is a member of the Little Falls Chamber of Commerce, both the Little Falls and Randall business associations and the Great River Arts Association, said her friends, family and clients have been very supportive of her move.
She feels that owning a business means also giving back to the community,
“I have donated many newborn pictures for the gallery in the New Life Birth Place at St. Gabriel’s Hospital in Little Falls,” she said.
For more information, contact Sherwood at (320) 232-9672 or visit the studio’s website at www.lisasherwoodphotography.com.