9 years ago today, I photographed my very first wedding and officially began my career as a wedding photographer! One thing lead to another and before I knew it, three other couples had trusted me with their photography, bringing my first wedding season total to four weddings! My second year, I photographed 17 couples and decided to quit my full time day job to pursue my business as my sole career.
Life was quite the whirlwind back then. In the early days of building the business, I spent countless hours each day working hard to balance spending my time between teaching myself the technical aspects of photography with learning the ins and outs of running a business. It was tough, and there were times when I had to get creative since I wasn’t making much money (like printing my own CD labels for the disks I used to deliver client images!), but I kept my main focus on making my clients my top priority. This still has never steered me wrong! And although the beginning years were a little more stressful than recent years, I still look back on those early days fondly, because no matter what was going on at the time, I took so much joy from working towards my dream. I was (and still am!) so proud to be running a business doing something creative….something that truly matters to other people!
Over the past 9 years I’ve had the time of my life. Things may not have always been perfect (and I am still making mistakes and still learning things every day), but there hasn’t been a moment when I haven’t been truly grateful to have had the opportunities and experiences that my business has opened up for me. And, of course for all of the incredible people that I’ve gotten to meet throughout my journey as a photographer…my clients and their friends and families, fellow wedding vendors, industry peers, etc. A lot of these people have become real deal friends outside of my business. I’ve gained so many great relationships through my business! I am truly lucky.
While day-to-day life behind the scenes here in my office currently looks a little different (thanks to the global pandemic happening as I write this), this quieter time has given me the opportunity to reflect and to really look ahead to what is next for me and my business. As proud as I am of the past 9 years, I’m also just as excited about the future! I can’t wait to get back to weddings. Back to hugging my clients, directing bridal parties, styling details, and fluffing veils. Sending countless emails about timelines and family formal lists and follow ups about album designs. I can’t wait to meet all of the new friends who will allow my little business to become a small part of their story!
To all of you who have allowed me into your lives over the past 9 years…and to those who have come along for the ride and supported me in any way (even by just sharing a post or two here and there!), I want to say thank you. I’m tearing up as I type this because you really do mean so much to me. Words don’t come close to being able to describe the gratitude and appreciation I feel! I am so thankful (and so humbled) to have been trusted by you, to have been cheered on by you. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to do something I once only dreamed I could do.
I would give you a hug from 6 feet away if I could (hopefully someday this will seem like a weird thing for me to have said), but instead, here’s a virtual elbow bump 🙂 Thank you for reading today and helping me celebrate my 9 year anniversary as a wedding photographer!! And happy NFL Draft day too, if you’re a football fan 😉