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Thia Beniash — SC Picture Project

SC Picture Project  |  Contributors  |  Thia Beniash

Meet Thia, a woman who bought a house in South Carolina on her honeymoon and never looked back. Nicknamed “The Camera Queen,” Thia grabs life by the horns and shares her passion with the world.

Thia Beniash

Thia Beniash © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Thia in Her Own Words

“I am a petite, spunky, and no-time-to-waste kinda girl. I believe if you want something bad enough you will work hard enough to get it.

“When I was 13, I saw a fellow student taking pictures of what I thought was a boring hallway. I asked him what was so interesting, and he said he would show me the photos the next day. When I saw them they were absolutely intriguing. They had ghost images of people rushing through the hallway. I asked how he did that and he explained. At that moment I knew I wanted to create photographs that would invoke feelings from the viewer.

Azalea Park Downtown Summerville

Azalea Park by Thia Beniash, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

“On my fourteenth birthday, my parents gave me a Minolta x-370 and unleashed a passion I would carry for a lifetime. Three years later I photographed my first wedding. One year after that I began working at Robert Taylor Photography in Connecticut and that became my home away from home for the next 18 years. I photographed families, children, newborns, maternity, schools, weddings, and special events.

Elloree Teapot Museum

Teapot Museum by Thia Beniash, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

“When we moved to South Carolina I turned the focus from my camera to my children full time. Once they were a bit older we started photography adventures around the state with all of us holding cameras to capture the beauty. That was when a new passion was ignited inside of me. I just wanted to see every nook and cranny of this glorious state, but … there’s always a but … I was not a landscape photographer and my camera and my vision were not in sync. That’s when I studied some local photographers and came across the work of Steve Rich. I was newly inspired, admired his work, and vowed I would learn from him. Lucky for me he held classes and I became a student. From there my landscape photography has evolved to synchronize my vision with the final image.

Magnolia Plantation Walking Path

Magnolia Plantation by Thia Beniash, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

“Photography has and always will be a passion that comes from deep within my soul. I find peace and joy in exploring the miraculous beauty on this earth. I wish to invoke the same feelings in the viewer. I just hope that my photography does that.”

More about Thia

My Hometown:  I was born in Connecticut and lived there until 2005 when my family and I decided to sell the snow blower and move to a warmer climate. During our honeymoon we bought a house in South Carolina and two months later moved in.

My Family:  I have two daughters who will both be taller than me soon and a husband who towers over me at the height of 6’5″.

My Four-Legged Family:  One is a lab mixed with the “dog next door” and the other is a cat that was “left on the office chair” at my husband’s work.

Why I Love South Carolina …

Favorite Spot in South Carolina:  I love so many places that I couldn’t truly just pick one favorite. I love the ocean and the sand, but other days I love the solitude of the mountains and the sound of the waterfalls. Each season changes the beauty of these destinations, too.

Favorite SC Plant:  The gardenia has the sweetest smell and is oh-so-delicate. On the flip side, the visual size and strength of the magnolia is also beloved, as are the hibiscus in all colors and wisteria.

Favorite SC Animal:  Dolphins, hands down!

Favorite Southern Foods:  Sweet tea and more sweet tea

Most Interesting Landmark in South Carolina:  The Button King would have to be the most interesting. Mr. Stevens is a guitar-playing, singing, older gentleman who will warm your heart with a song on his button-covered guitar.

Dalton Stevens Button King

Dalton Stevens, Button King by Thia Beniash, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

A Few Random Facts …

Favorite Book:  The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

Favorite Movies:  It Could Happen to You and Serendipity

Favorite Song:  Respect by Aretha Franklin

Sounds I Love:  Depending on my mood, either the soft sound of the ocean waves or the crashing sound of a waterfall

Smells I Love:  Chocolate chip cookies baking, popcorn, cinnamon, lilacs

Three Things That Make Me Happy:  My loving and supportive family near and far; true, lifelong, dependable friends; and the ability to explore the beauty on this earth and capture it through the lens

What I Want To Do in My Life:  Publish three books and have a photo I have taken on the front cover of National Geographic, Outdoor Photographer, and Charleston Magazine

What I Believe:  I believe that success is not measured in material things but in how you make people feel and if you have helped them to the best of your ability.

Trinity Church Edisto

Trinity Episcopal Church by Thia Beniash, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

My Gear …

Camera:  Canon 70d, Canon T6s

Lens:  Canon 18-200mm, Canon 10-20mm

Programs:  Adobe Photoshop CS6 and Lightroom, NIK collection, Topaz labs Collection

Extras:  Magnifying loupe, Remote Control, Explorer backpack, ND Filters

Contact Thia …

My Photos:  SC Picture Project | The Camera Queen | The Camera Queen on Facebook | The Camera Queen on Flicker

Contact Me:  You can contact me at photothia@yahoo.com or PM via messenger on The Camera Queen on Facebook for lessons, print orders, or questions.


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