Meet Maja Tsolo, merging magical photography, weddings, family and travel with a special Most Curious offer
We've got a special shout out today for a name to watch in the style-savvy wedding photographer crew - Maja Tsolo has a relaxed, modern style, informed by her skill-full work life balance, travel and her culturally diverse family. Plus a very special offer.
London based warm and artful wedding photographer Maja Tsolo grew up in Slovenia, where she graduated with a psychology degree before moving out to the USA to continue academic research work. After her marriage to her South African husband they both managed to secure jobs in London, where they still reside 10 years on. A true grafter, after her three children were born Maja left academia and focused on her creative outlet of photography to build her photography business from scratch and now shoots weddings, engagement and couples shoots, family and maternity sessions all over the world.
She uses her keen eye for beautiful details and passion for travel, as well as spotting and documenting all those big, small and in-between moments during weddings, to bring relaxed beauty to her laid back storytelling style. It’s something you can see twinkle off the page and screen in her soulful images.
While she takes on weddings from all over the UK, she is also looking to shoot more destination weddings across Europe and beyond. She would be a great choice for anyone looking to get married in and around her native Slovenia, with Croatia and Northern Italy being especially accessible from her home town, where she regularly visits. To this end, she is offering to waive her travel fees for the first three couples who are getting married outside of England (and within Europe) and book her as their wedding photographer. QUOTE ‘MOST CURIOUS’ WHEN ENQUIRING.
We spoke to Maja to find out a little more about what makes her tick, her wealth of life experience and love for her work..
What is your background?
I grew up in rural Slovenia, near Julian Alps in a very sporty, outdoor loving family. I was lucky enough to be able to travel with my family from an early age and it really ignited my passion for discovering new places and cultures. During my University years I took any opportunity to travel. After I graduated with a psychology degree I moved to the USA for a year to work in research. This same year I married my husband, whom I have known since our early teenage years, despite living on two different continents (long story). Soon after our wedding he was offered a job transfer to London and I was also able to find a research job here, so we made London our home and have now lived here for the past 10 years.
Right after I completed an MSc in Cognitive Neuropsychology, *yes you read that right - our first son was born and within the next four years we also welcomed a daughter and another son into the family, firmly cementing my status as a stay at home mum. My husband is South African and both sides of our families live back in our home countries, so with three young children and no extended family to offer a hand, we were in for a very busy few years.
Photography has been one of my hobbies since I was a teenager and went hand in hand with traveling. During those busy baby years my subject shifted from landscapes to children and it was then that I really started learning about photography as I looked for something to occupy me aside from dirty nappies and snotty noses.
How did this open you up into the wedding industry?
When I first started my business I only offered family and baby sessions. As I had young children of my own, photographing children was what I knew and it also gave me a connection point with my clients. A few years in, a former work colleague asked me to photograph her wedding and after turning her down several times she eventually persuaded me to take it on. I was a nervous wreck leading up to the wedding day but was amazed to find on the actual day that nerves gave way to exhilaration and I thoroughly enjoyed it (and they loved the photos). I realised that what first drew me to study psychology – human interaction, connection and emotions – were all there for me to seek out and capture.
How would you describe your couples or the couples you would love to reach?
My couples are adventurous and free-spirited. They are style-conscious and not afraid to stand out and do things their own way rather than blindly following tradition. They seek quality over quantity and enjoy things that are beautiful and well made.
Can you give us a day in the life of Maja Tsolo?
It is busy without fail, ha ha. While my husband has been incredibly supportive of my business throughout the years and he will often juggle the childcare and work when I am away shooting, it is me who has to balance work and childcare most days. I usually do all the school and nursery drop offs and pick ups and our youngest son still stays at home with me two days a week (although he is starting school this September, which will be very bitter sweet).
On days when David, our youngest, is in nursery, I drop everyone off first thing in the morning and then I normally try and go for a run. Running is my go-to activity that keeps me fit as well as sane. I have recently run a few half marathons and when David starts school I would love to try and train for a full one.
After my run I get home, shower, eat my breakfast (usually near lunchtime) and then spend the rest of my child-free hours behind my computer, editing and sorting out work admin. The rest of the afternoon is spent with my children, taxiing them around for different activities and helping them with their school work. Once they are in bed I often have to carry on working to manage the work load. This makes for many late evenings but I love the flexibility that this job gives me and the ability to never miss any major events in my children’s lives.
Can you tell us a little more about your services? What do you feel sets you apart from other wedding photographers?
I photograph weddings and elopements throughout the UK as well as abroad. Apart from weddings I also shoot couple sessions – from proposals, engagements to anniversary sessions, as well as maternity, newborn and family sessions. My approach for any type of session is lifestyle with relaxed, natural feel, aimed at capturing connection and little in-between moments that can so easily go unnoticed. I love it when past wedding clients book me again to help capture their growing family in their next season of life.
I genuinely love connecting with people, finding about their story and I think my clients can tell how much I love what I do. I‘m constantly striving to do better and I think my business has reflected that over the years.
What is the proudest moment you have had working with brides so far?
I always feel proud and overjoyed when my couples tell me that they really enjoyed working with me and that they feel the photos reflect their wedding day well. I always strive to capture connection and genuine emotions as well as tell the story of the day. Rather than trying to be super creative, I focus on capturing the feel of the day and making sure that the couple are able to re-live their wedding day through my photos and be reminded of exactly how it felt even years down the line.
One of my favourite feedbacks came very recently from one of my grooms, who emailed me to say that him and the bride loved the images and both cried for 30 minutes after watching the wedding slideshow. This for me is as good as any award.
Do you have a bucket list of weddings you would love to shoot but haven’t yet had the chance?
I love snow and it is one of the main things I miss from my home country. I’m not talking about a little sprinkling/sludge that we occasionally experience down here in London, I am talking about up-to-your-knees, unspoilt snow. I would absolutely love to shoot a snowy wedding or elopement somewhere in the mountains. A wedding or elopement on the rugged coastline somewhere is also high on the list.
In London, I’d love an opportunity to shoot in Town Hall Hotel, the Asylum chapel or the Petersham Nurseries.
What is the furthest you have gone to get the exact shot you want?
Many of my clients know that I will happily travel for hours or get up in the middle of the night if it means that I’ll get to shoot in beautiful scenery and in good light. I’m not a morning person but I won’t think twice about getting up at 4am to get to the shoot location at dawn.
I did an engagement session at Seven Sisters Country Park once and I really wanted to capture the scale of the cliffs and the couple on top of them. To get the image I was after, I walked further up the cliffs and lay down right on the edge and all I could hear was my heart thumping in my chest. It was scary and thrilling at the same time!
contact Maja on : firstname.lastname@example.org
See more here: instagram.com/majatsolophotography/
Maja is offering to waive her travel fees for the first three couples who are getting married outside of England (and within Europe) and book her as their wedding photographer. QUOTE ‘MOST CURIOUS’ WHEN ENQUIRING.