Some people collect Wedgewood. Others collect stamps, or rocks. Liesa Cole collects “people”. Whenever she spots an interesting character, she documents them with her camera and places the resulting image in one of the many vintage glass jars she discovered left behind In her 102 year old studio building. Then, the new “specimen” joins the others on the display shelf. This fascination with humanity is undoubtedly what drove Liesa to her profession. Whether photographing people or the objects they desire or the places they inhabit or roam, her passion remains the same. She seeks to discover and reveal the depth of beauty and intricacy of design in each.
“People truly fascinate me.….the lives they lead, what makes them tick. I have been dubbed a “Freak magnet”. I prefer, “connoisseur of eccentricity”. Admittedly, I am drawn to the quirkiest of free spirits, shucking societal norms in favor of their own path. I love to celebrate originality and exceptionalism.”
As a student of Fine Art Photography at L.S.U., it never occurred to Liesa that she could earn a living with her camera. She was just “wandering toward [her] passion.” These days Liesa drifts happily between the commercial and Fine Art worlds. On the most satisfying of days she claims it is hard to tell the difference. To those who know Liesa, it is no surprise that her favorite quote are these words attributed to Howard Thurman:
“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”
Liesa has a minor in Fine Art Photography as well as her Commercial Photography Certification from the University of Alabama in Birmingham.
Liesa brings dedication to excellence and a creative collaborative spirit to all of her projects. Her passion for her work is perhaps only outmatched by her passion for her family, which include her daughter Gabrielle and son, Cole.
2014 Grand Prize PDN “Faces” Competition
2014 1st Prize at Photography Masters Conference, Grado, Italy
2014 Photographer of the Year, ADDY Awards, Birmingham Chapter
2014 (5) time Addy Award Winner, Birmingham Chapter
2013 (5) time District Addy Award Winner
2013 PDN “Faces” 1st place Children Portrait
2012 National Gold Addy Award Winner
2012 District Gold Addy Award
2011 International Photographer of the Year, “Photography Masters Cup”
2011 1st Place Outstanding Achievement Award, Portrait, “Photography Masters Cup”
2011 1st Place, editorial Photography, “National CRMA”
2011 Photographer of the Year, ADDY Awards, Birmingham Chapter
2011 District Gold Addy Award
2011 PDN “Faces” Animal Portrait