Interview with Katie Marino

By Paul on October 27th, 2011

We were excited to interview Katie Marino, or Dr Marino to you!  She is a very inspiring photographer.  Her unique firework location photos, different perspectives on common WDW scenes and photo books have been a personal inspiration for me.

Name
Katie Marino

Where are you from?
Rhode Island

Where are you currently living?
Massachusetts

What’s your day job?
Pediatrician

Any upcoming trips planned?
I always have one or two trips in the works. Next up is a trip to see the Christmas decorations.

When was your first trip to WDW?
We took our first trip as a family when I was 7 years old. We visited WDW every 2-3 years when I was young and then, I had a very long Disney-free period while I focused on school and my career. In 2009, I took my first “adult” trip to WDW and I was hooked. The next year, I bought my first annual pass and have since made many more trips.

What is it about WDW that keeps you coming back?
It’s magical. Also, there is so much to see and do, especially with the different special events throughout the year. No two trips are ever the same.

When first time WDW visitors ask you for a tip, what’s your best advice or tip for WDW?
Remember to have fun. For the happiest place on earth, I’ve seen a lot of unhappy people at WDW. Don’t be in such a rush to get things done and checked off the to-do list. If your child is happy coloring at the Mexico Pavilion, let him color. Get a drink or snack, relax, and enjoy your vacation- even if it comes at the expense of not hitting every performance in the World Showcase.

What’s your favorite WDW memory?
Lots of great memories. The best memories are hanging out with my family and friends, both new and old.

If you could work at WDW, what’s your dream job?
I want to be a performer in a parade- specifically, a Haunted Mansion spook in the Boo to You Parade. That being said, I have absolutely no dancing, singing or performance talent at all. But this is a dream, right?

What’s in your camera bag in the parks?
I have the bad habit of carrying a lot of gear- my Canon 50d and 3-4 lenses. Lately, I have been using my f/4 70-200 more frequently in the parks. I also always carry my speedlight-it’s usually attached to my camera during the day to use as a fill flash. I always get a locker and leave my tripod and 1-2 lenses there during the day.

What other photographers inspire you?
One of my colleagues at work is an amazing film photographer- I’m continually impressed with what he can accomplish in-camera, without the instant digital feedback that I depend upon.

When and how did you start shooting photographs?
I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures to create memories but in 2009, I decided to attend a photography conference recommended to me by the colleague I mentioned above. In preparation for this, I decided to purchase a dSLR and from there I was hooked. I started reading photography books and studying photos online, wanting to learn as much as possible.

What made you start taking photographs at WDW?
At first, I took photos at WDW to document the fun times. As I learned more about photography, I started to want to tell a story with my photographs and pushed myself to learn more and capture unique perspectives.

What is your advice for the average tourist photographer at WDW?
Look for stories and emotions and try to communicate them with your photographs.

What’s your favorite time of year to visit WDW? Why?
Christmas. Unlike other holidays or special events, the Christmas transformation at WDW is resort-wide- the parks, the resorts, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, the Holiday tag on Illuminations, the Osborne Lights, the Holiday Storytellers at Epcot…there are so many unique things to do during the Christmas season. Plus, it snows on Main Street! What’s not to love?

Does your non WDW friends and co-workers know about your passion for WDW? How do you explain it?
They know. My explanation- “Because it’s awesome”.

Rapid Fire Questions

On Property of Off?
On Property- I love being completely immersed in the Disney magic.

Ferry or Monorail to Magic Kingdom?
Monorail

Mac or PC?
PC.

What’s your favorite park?
Magic Kingdom.

Favorite Resort?
Port Orleans French Quarter (although I’ve never stayed deluxe, I’m sure I’d love most of those resorts).

Favorite park for photography?
The Magic Kingdom, during the Halloween or Christmas seasons.

Favorite Attraction?
Pirates of the Caribbean

Favorite restaurant?
Boma!

Favorite snack/dessert?
My go-to Disney snack is the chocolate covered banana. It’s refreshing, doesn’t melt as quickly as ice cream and I can pretend that it’s healthy!

View more of Katie’s photography.

Purchase prints of Katie’s photography.

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