Phil Siegel: A Photographer in the Heart of Minneapolis

One influential person I have come across just this last summer is a photographer named Phil Siegel. Located in the heart of Minneapolis, Siegel has done multiple shoots with young models- this being mostly portraits and fun creative work! He shoots at unique locations, including flower fields, arcades, tennis courts, and beaches! Looking through his Instagram, his main muses are girls, however there is a mix of looks and styles.


Over the summer I got into contact with him at the Minnesota State Fair when I accompanied my friend, Sophia Gehlhar, to a big collaborated photoshoot with Eric Ronning. I got to meet many inspiring creative people, so I wanted to share one individual I’ve been inspired by since.


After getting into contact again with Phil, I was excited that he wanted to be featured in my Her Campus article. Some of my friends have never even heard of his work. I love supporting the arts and collaborating with others… meet Phil!



Her Campus (HC): Hi Phil! I want our readers to get a taste of some of your work, inspirations and creativity. How old are you now and how old were you when you first started photography?

Phil Siegel (PS): I am 24 years old and I started taking photos in 2016, I didn’t start taking portraits until 2017 when I convinced some people to model for me.


HC: Where were you born, and where would be your ideal shooting location?

PS: I was born and raised in Minnesota and my ideal shooting location in the state is Minneapolis. Overall, I would say my ideal shooting location would be somewhere that is warm year-round. I loved shooting on the beach in California when I was there. 



HC: Who is your ideal client or model?

PS: Honestly anyone that’s interested in modeling is an ideal client, as long as they show up willing to have some fun. A lot of the people I work with are newer or have never modeled before. I love when people have an idea in mind that they message me.


HC: What are the kinds of photoshoots you say you have done a lot of?

PS: I focus mostly on portraits and product shoots, but I started with landscape and have done a little boudoir as well. 



HC: What other kinds of photoshoots are you interested in doing?

PS: I honestly want to shoot just about everything, a new genre of shooting is just a new challenge that I get to face. I do want to do more creative stuff specifically, I have about 70 mood boards that I made that I want to do similar ideas. 


Here are some examples:


HC: What is your favorite shoot you’ve ever done?

PS: That’s a hard question, there are a lot of shoots that are my favorite. If I had to choose, I'd say that my entire trip to LA was my favorite. It was a ton of fun and I met some really cool and unique people. 


HC: What is your favorite picture you ever taken?

PS: My favorite picture I’ve ever taken is probably this photo I took of my friend Mckenna laying down in the water on a beach. I was shooting with another photographer when a boat went by and caused a wave to flow over Mckenna.



HC: What is your editing process?

PS: After I come home from a shoot, I import all of my photos into Lightroom. In Lightroom I sort through all the photos to figure out the good one’s vs the bad ones, then I go through all of the good photos and choose which ones I think are the absolute best. I take all of the best ones into Photoshop and start by color grading, skin retouching, dodge and burn, and then a final color grading. 



HC: How can someone book a photoshoot with you?

PS: Either message me on Instagram or my website. Feel free to reach out with any questions.


HC: Who has inspired your work (this can be multiple artists)?

PS: One of my biggest inspirations would be my dad, he’s the person that got me into photography in the first place. Growing up I can remember stopping on hikes to take landscapes back on film and developing our photos in the basement. 


HC: Would you ever be interested in weddings, engagements, etc.?

PS: I would definitely be interested in engagements, I’m not sure about weddings, I enjoy getting to know the person in front of the camera and weddings are stressful. 


HC: What are your goals for later involving photography?

PS: My future goals for photography would be to never stop learning and getting better. I’m not really sure what I’m going to be pursuing career wise with photography, I really enjoy doing product photography for branding as well as working with more modeling agencies. I recently co-founded a makeup brand and will be doing the marketing material as well as the social media and website, so that will keep me busy for a while. 


HC: Is there anything else you would like to add?

PS: Photography and modeling is a really fun experience and anyone that has been thinking about doing either should pursue it. There’s never been a time where it’s cheaper to start getting into photography and there’s a great community willing to help. If you’re interested in modeling start asking friends with cameras and if you end up meeting up with a photographer, you haven’t met before, bring a friend! 


Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with me, Phil!