Fireworks Photography is inspired in Washougal

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Debra Hoff-Frye prepares Washougal High School student Sam Sharp for a senior portrait session at Fireworks Photography studio. The session continued at the Port of Camas-Washougal marina, Parker's Landing Historical Park and the Washougal pedestrian tunnel. Hoff-Frye owns Fireworks Photography with her husband Stephen Frye, near downtown Washougal.

Debra Hoff-Frye has more than 30 years of experience behind a camera, and some examples of her work can be seen at Fireworks Photography, in Washougal.

Debra and her husband Stephen Frye purchased Fireworks Photography five years ago from the business’ original owners Brian and Anne Knoll. Debra worked as a freelance photographer when the company was located in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.

Fireworks Photography provides portraits for high school seniors, weddings, individuals and families, infants and children, sports, pets and special events. The Fryes also offer landscapes and commercial photography services.

Stephen said their company’s niche is building relationships.

“To us, that is what sets us apart from photography companies,” he said. “We strive to really get to know our clients, in order to best serve their photography needs. It’s helpful to know their likes and dislikes.”

Portrait backgrounds have included area trails, the Columbia and Washougal rivers and Mount Hood.

Other options have included “lush trees or greenery or maybe a field of trees that are sparse,” Stephen said.

“We’re always looking and keeping our eyes open,” Debra said.

The company’s goals include providing a comfortable, relaxing experience

“It’s not a ‘we have 15 minutes before the next clients’ [experience].” Stephen said. “It’s all about them.”

Brides and grooms can order Italian made wedding books – with metallic or luster matte finish pages. Prints on canvas are also available.

Stephen said he enjoys watching Debra work.

“I feel she is very talented and good at what she does,” he said. “I also enjoy watching the people in front of the camera – high school seniors and weddings. We make a lot of friends. We laugh a lot. Making other people happy is rewarding.”

Debra said she enjoys the moments when the customer finally feels relaxed and special.

“They’re getting pictures taken like movie stars. I really enjoy hearing their feedback after they see them. That’s my biggest joy.”

One of the job’s highlights for Debra is the postproduction work, which can involve using software tools to create special effects, custom collages and wedding book layouts.

Special events are planned

The Fryes plan to host another Halloween “Boo-nanza” toward the end of October. Last year, that event included candies, cookies and photos of children in costumes.

Santa plans to visit in December with hot chocolate and treats.

“People really enjoyed that last year, because they were able to avoid lines in the malls,” Debra said.

Debra’s professional experiences have included working in camera, teleprompter and lighting operations for WPBT, a public broadcasting television station in Miami, and as a producer/director for a production company in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.

She has worked as a videographer at sporting events for ESPN, CBS, ABC, NBC and FOX. Those events have included the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta and the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, as well as the 1990 Goodwill Games in Seattle. Debra has also worked on several films and TV programs, including American Gladiators.

Another photographer Mena Franz takes photos of weddings with Debra.

Fireworks Photography is located at 1436 “A” St., Ste. 106. For more information, call 904-1466, e-mail or visit