“Some of the best memories and highlights are sometimes from shoots where the process was so rewarding, not just the finished images,” says photographer Sam McAdam-Cooper. “Troubleshooting problematic locations or changeable weather conditions, creative problem-solving, pushing briefs, collaborating with inspiring creatives, making clients happy… all of these make for highlights.” Sam, who works regularly for the likes of Inside Out, Vogue Living, Country Style and Delicious magazines, is now also a mother of two young boys. “There’s something very grounding about having children - whatever achievements or acknowledgements I receive have no currency with them whatsoever,” she says. “They just want their dinner. Or a hug. Or a story. It’s quite a blow to one’s ego, but a necessary and healthy one, not to be defined by your job. It’s easy in this industry to lose perspective about that stuff.”

The original interview was published on 2 October 2008.

Some of my favourite images in recent issues of Inside Out have been delivered via the talents of Sydney-based photographer Sam McAdam. Thanks to a couple of art directors giving her a break - she had studied fine arts at university and wasn't really cognisant of how the industry worked - jobs filtered through. Sam says her visual style is informed by art history and semiotics, which explains why some of her work is reminiscent of a Dutch painting.

Which five words best describe you? Passionate, driven, loopy, mercurial, critical.

What's your proudest achievement? Ohhhh, I'm too modest to say!

Who inspires you? People that overcome adversity.

What are you passionate about? Family, friends, ideas, beautiful things.

What's the best lesson you've learnt? That in life, you can either be right, or be happy. Thanks Dad.

Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Without any hesitation, Neil Finn. Sigh.

What's next? A honeymoon.

What are you reading? Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises.