When I was 19 I realized that becoming a wedding photographer was my dream job. So I made it happen. In between final exams, college drama, and moving back and forth between two states, I created this. Now four years later I have built a business that I am proud of and fall more in love with every day. Not only does my job allow me to be creative and my own boss, but I also get to be the only one responsible for my success. Those reasons alone make it obvious why so many people buy a camera to take some picture of their friends or family, and suddenly realize they could do this for a living.
This “easy entry” into the world of photography used to bother me. Photography is MY passion and MY job; it is what makes me unique. I thought all of these new photographers starting their businesses with DIY business cards and a Facebook Page were devaluing my personal struggle. And, more importantly, creating competition.
Los Angeles in particular has an incredibly saturated market. There is everything from the established photographer making a 6-figure income to the mom with a new DSLR charging $50 to take pictures of her friend’s children. Within just a few miles of my home I could find dozens of photographers and that amount continues to grow each year. Most established photographers will look at this growth and instead of embracing the community they fear the potential competition. However, something I realized early in my career changed the mantra of my future business:
“There is enough for everyone.”
Another photographer’s success does not equal my failure. Our clients are different just like our goals are different. There is enough for everyone. Competition is something we create and harbor by our own will. When another photographer asks me for the location of one of my sessions or what gear they should buy, I can decide if I want to share my knowledge or keep the secrets I have spend time & money learning. Would I really be loosing business by giving these things away? Instead I choose to believe that helping one photographer could be helping the industry as a whole.
Here’s the thing. The photographer down the street could have the the same computer, the same equipment, the same presets, heck they could even have the same business name, but they will never be YOU! And the moment you recognize that you are more than those things you will see that it is your PASSION that makes your unique.
I choose community over competition. I want to be an encourager in this industry; I believe in building people up and celebrating their success. From my very first year of business, I have met new photographers at coffee shops to share my knowledge, created PDF templates to explain my workflow, answered every email that came my way, and wrote blog posts of things I was able to figure out. It has always been a part of my business to share.
Today I am thrilled to announce the launch of my Coaching Program. This program is for the photographer that wants to grow their business and to find their voice. It is for the photographer that believes in community and has a passion that is palpable. Together we will pave a path for your business that is as unique as you are.
Know that I am not here to claim I am perfect or that I have “figured it out,” because that could not be farther from the truth. I am similpy a small business owner that has put a lot of time and research into what works for me, and I want to share what I know. I want to be your encourager.
P.s. As a launch special, I am offer $100 off to the first 5 photographers that inquire about the program! Just mention this blog post in your email.