Out with the old...

In my last post, I announced that I closed the doors to my studio... the place that took my photography from a hobby to a business.   In case you didn't read the last post, then let me recap it for you.  

I'm closing the studio in the basement of Gray Chiropractic building for a larger, more personalized space in an old small home full of charm.  It has me so eager to offer lifestyle in studio sessions and expand on the types of sessions I can offer because of my new location, which I will share more about in my next blog post.  So don't worry, the closing of this studio is nothing but positive!  I can't wait to share my new space with everyone soon! 

Back to the basement office that I just moved out of.... the space pictured below is where I took a leap of faith to figure out if I could really make a go of photography.  I doubted not only my photography skills but also my ability to handle the business side of things.   While, I've always had a love for documenting moments, I 'officially' began taking pictures for others in the fall of 2011 after my husband left me.  It wasn't until the Spring of 2016 when I rented this space for my studio that I tried to approach it as a way to make a living.  After I rented this space in the spring of 2016, I started absorbing everything I could about running a business. 

 

I learned about the cost of doing business and calculated such expenses and realized that running a studio is far more than taking pictures.  Only 10-20% of my time is spent doing what I absolutely love, which is capturing the memories... physically being out on location with my clients and hitting the old shutter button.  That's where my heart is the happiest.  I leave each session more energized than when I arrived an hour earlier.  The rest of my work hours is spent editing, communicating with clients via email, marketing, accounting, education, workshops, etc.

Changing my mentality from a hobbyist to a business owner has been really eye opening.  I still have lots to learn but what I've learned is that not only is running a successful photography business possible but it is possible for ME!  What?!  Who'd uh thunk?!  :-)  Believing in yourself is the first step to success, in anything, and this little studio (primarily a space for ordering appointments after my sessions and occasionally a space for photographing individuals) was key for me. 

As a child and young adult, I did not lack confidence.  I knew I could do anything I wanted.  Never thought otherwise.  However in much of my adult life, I believed what someone close to me said about me.   My belief that I was smart, capable and 'enough' was destroyed over the years.  It's quite a process to retrain your brain and heart to differentiate the lies others say about you (which eventually became what I thought were truths about me) AND the real truths about me and the God given gifts I was born with and continue to try to grow into every day.  If you're interested in learning more about me, feel free to hop over to my personal blog, www.sweetlemonadelife.com.  On that blog I share about my divorce, dealing with narcissistic people, and occasionally a funny or loving story about my family.  I don't write often but what I write comes from my heart.  

I share all of this because as excited as I am to open up a new studio, I was taken by surprise by the sadness that came over me as I was emptying out this space.  This little space wasn't 'just a studio'.  This was the beginning of so much.  It was not only the beginning of changing my mentality to treat my photography as a real business but it was also a part of so much more.  This is where many new 'client turned friend' relationships began.  And oddly enough, this studio was part of an emotional process as well.  

Sweet Lemonade Photography's Mission Statement

TO EMPOWER AND ENCOURAGE EVERY CLIENT BY SHOWING BEAUTY AND JOY IN FREE SPIRITED FUN IMAGES THAT INSPIRE CONFIDENCE AND A STRONG SENSE OF SELF WORTH

My goal has always been to make those in front of my camera to feel relaxed, have fun and feel beautiful/handsome when they view their images.  I want them to FEEL and SEE the beauty God created in them.  I want my clients to see the amazingness that their friends and family already see and know.  I want them to know they are loved, that they are worthy, that they are enough.  

SLP mission statement comes from my own struggles.  Healing from emotional abuse does not happen overnight.  It's a constant work in progress for me for sure.   So as I continue to work through my own issues with believing I am enough, it has always been my passion to help others believe they are enough.  I want them to see confidence and beauty in the images I take of them.  I want them to believe they are not only enough but they are so much more! 

So this studio as it turns out was a critical component in my life, professionally and personally.  The studio led me to clients who have believed in me and trusted me to capture their families memories and milestones and for that I'm forever thankful.  And with every family that has walked through my doors, YOU have given me so much more than I think I ever have given you in return.  You each have helped me find a little piece of me that I gradually lost over the years.  So thank you.  

I look forward to all the memories I'll have the opportunity to capture in 2018 for you and your family!

XOXOXO,

Heather

 Saying goodbye to the space where my business began.  It was a great place to start and eager to see where it goes from here!  

Saying goodbye to the space where my business began.  It was a great place to start and eager to see where it goes from here!  

Can't wait to share my new space with you in my next post later this week!  :-) 

Heather WanningerComment