06 August 2013

Close to quitting: a photography business

One of my biggest accomplishments, yet biggest struggles, is my photography business, Photo Says Hello. I have been through so many ups and downs with this beast, that sometimes, it's easy to just say: I give up. 

One of my biggest struggles as a photographer is almost booking the client. Sometimes, they tell you why they decided not to hire you and sometimes, they don't. That's the scariest. Not knowing why. 

brains of the outfit | photography by photo says hello | creative business portraits

I've been fortunate to have family and friends support me, and gosh, my biggest champion has been my husband, but I've also been let down by the people who tell me my work is fantastic, suggest hiring me and then don't, or want a deal because they knew me before my business.  They don't realize that I have bills to pay, a family to support, and business expenses. 

brains of the outfit | photography by photo says hello | creative business portraits

And giving in to those little jabs, those tiny little things that I shouldn't let get under my skin, is why I'm so dangerously close to quitting my business. But then I meet people like Trent Chau, Raven Shutley, Erin Brown, Ann Parker, and Diane Homer, all creative business owners, who have done nothing but support and encourage and provide opportunities for me to grow and expand, not only as a photographer, but as a business woman. 

I have awesome friends like Amanda and Chloe, The Boutwells, Cassie and Lawrence, and Nissa and Brad, who let me practice on them and market the crap out of their photos. 

It's people like that who  keep me in the running. They constantly inspire and encourage, and I realize I'm so incredibly lucky to have such a collection of people ready to help in any way they can.

grit & wit design| photography by photo says hello | creative business portraits

grit & wit design| photography by photo says hello | creative business portraits

So as a result of realizing that, I've been so lucky these past few months to partner with Diane, an Atlanta-based makeup artist, Ann, a graphic designer, and Erin, a style blogger. We've been teaming up a lot lately trading services and helping to spread the word about our businesses. 

Photography by Photo Says Hello | Bridal Portraits | Lennox Park | Atlanta, GA

My biggest challenge to myself and to my business is to stop being so consumed with success and "making it" as a photographer, but to be content in what I have, and in the clients who choose to hire me because they connect with me and my work. 

Typing this all out has helped me to have that "oh that's right" moment, that feeling of "oh yeah, this is why I wanted to be a photographer." I lost sight of the joy I gained from being content in where I was exactly in the process, of learning from it, growing from it, and finding the satisfaction in helping others with what I can offer to them. 

So here's to tapping into that again. Here's to going back to becoming the photographer I was striving to be.


  1. Stopping by from In Its Time, I love this post, especially being a small business owner myself. You mentioned being content and not focusing on 'making it' and that really spoke to me, Thank you for sharing!!

    1. Hi Jacy! I'm so glad this was helpful. I really want to be successful, but not at the cost of being a cut throat business woman who sees her clients as nothing more than a bank account. I got into photography to tell a story, and it's been a fight to keep it that way.

      I just went to your blog and shop, and I can't wait to look at it some more! I'm in love with those ladylike photoshop brushes!

      Also, you look like you stepped right out of Downton Abbey (my favorite show ever!!) on your "About" page with those flowers in your hair and the beautiful lace top! :)


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