Long time no see (or speak)! I apologize for the lack of updates from me but things have been extremely busy. I work a full time job on top of doing photography. I actually wear multiple hats as you can see below…
So as you can see, I have a lot on my plate. Realistically, I can’t do it all. There is not enough time in the day, I’ve barely been home lately, and it’s a lot of added stress. I thought a lot about it and I have to cut back and give up things in order to have more time in the day for my husband, family, friends and to enjoy life.
That being said, effective at the end of 2014 I will stepping away from the business side of photography.
In the photography industry, we open up shop with big aspirations of replacing our jobs with the business after hearing how other big name photographers made it happen, we watch webinars, attend workshops, etc and ultimately in the world we’re in now, that’s just not as realistic an option as it used to be. Everyone has access to a camera, heck we have cameras on our phones. New photography businesses are popping up everyday because of this; either people who are looking to make an extra dollar or people who truly want to make a career out of it.
I started my business back in 2011 in a small town in Michigan and I was able to grow it thanks to word of mouth and being in a small town. Having moved back near the city in late 2013, the business has been stagnant. I have been spending all of my free time outside of work working on the business, trying to get the word out, etc and my husband told me he didn’t like seeing me put so much into it and not have anything come out of it. My main goal with my business was to make it my career but unfortunately, it’s not a realistic goal anymore.
Photography is still something I love and want to continue with, but I want to shoot for myself versus worrying about booking enough clients a month to pay the bills. Photographers with their own businesses have it tough. They have to make sure they are booking enough to pay bills, put food on the table, etc. For some, it’s their livelihood and for some it’s their family’s only source of income. I wish money didn’t even exist to be honest (I always had some complicated idea of how that would work in my head as a kid). I think we would all be much happier and less stressed out on a daily basis, but I digress.
First and foremost, I am an artist. I love what I do and I love being able to work with clients to create that. The business part of it is just too much stress. Maybe I wasn’t meant to be a business owner in the first place, but now I know that. I had the opportunity to attend a business retreat for small business owners and I learned so much about myself there. It’s a given we did learn a bit about business but I learned so much more about myself as a person, where I want to go, and what I want to do. We each have this idea called a “baby bird” (that’s what we called it there). It’s an idea you have deep down that you “lose your sh**” over (you had to be there) and it means a lot to you. Mine of course was my antibullying photography project. I love working with kids and I feel that this project is important to me because of that and I love helping other people see how awesome they are, so that’s why I started the project. The sad thing about it is…I have only had one person contact me about it. People know I do it, but I’ve only had one person nominate someone for it. I have contacted schools, community centers, etc. and nothing. If you know anyone you’d like to nominate for this, please let me know. This project is no cost for whomever the session is for, this is something I will continue offering because I feel that kids/teens need that confidence boost.
So with all this being said, I am taking clients until the end of 2014. To my wedding clients/prospects: If your wedding is taking place in 2015 and you’d like to have me I would love to shoot your wedding, you would just need to book by the end of this year. I am also more than happy to recommend you to friends of mine who are amazing photographers and will treat you well.
But what will you do?!
So…that’s a very good question. Do I have career aspirations? Sort of. I’m still the person who doesn’t know what they want to be when they grow up (so when I was 9 I wanted to be a meteorologist, yes for real!)…and I’m an adult. What I’d really like to do, I’d need to go back and get a Masters Degree for but financially that isn’t possible. I would like to have a career where I work with children and teens of all ages either informally educating them about a topic or running activities for them, something fun along those lines. If anyone has suggestions as to what that is, please let me know. I know that actually screams “teacher”, but I don’t want to be a teacher in the traditional sense. My educational background is in Theatre and Communications, I love public speaking, and I work very well with children and teens, I have an easy time relating to them.
It went a little off topic at the end but I want to say thank you so much to all the clients I’ve had since day one back in Michigan to now, you made this business journey a fun one (P.S. I miss you!) and you’ve helped me grow as a person. I am so thankful for that.
Please keep following me if you’re interested in seeing my photography as I will still be doing it, just as an artist. Thanks again!