I’m very excited to start a new feature on Liberating Working Moms! We will be showcasing Working Mompreneurs as they share with you all about starting their own businesses. Please let us know of any other Mompreneurs you would like to see featured, of if you are a Mompreneur, we’d love to feature you too! You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Please tell us a little bit about the business you started?
I’ve always taken photos, a lot of photos. I’d even shot weddings and other paid shoots in my younger years, so I was far from inexperienced. I shoot everything from engagements, boudoir, weddings, maternity birth and newborns and of course, families!
2. Are you a SAHM turned working mom or are you a working mom turned entrepreneur? How did starting your Photography business come about?
I’d definitely consider myself a SAHM turned WAHM. I spend about 30 hours a week working between the back end (emails, spreadsheets, website maintenance) and shooting and editing. It started quietly and simply enough with portfolio building through friends and after I had about 10 shoots under my belt I went public!
3. What were your first steps with starting to see photography as a business opportunity for you?
I’m a very visual person so first thing I did was make a website. I concentrated on that for a while, all while building a small portfolio of friends and family and lining up shoots for a small fee. The best advice I got was from my friend Carolyn who said to just give it a shot and see how it felt. Was it organic? Did it fit? And it did!
4. What was your motivation originally to start making money with your photography? Was it fueled by creativity, necessity, or something else?
After a couple of years at home, I was bored, frankly. My interest in photography was ramping up and I knew I couldn’t invest in the equipment I wanted without really using it. I had no idea things would be so successful, so quickly!
5. How long did it take you to get your business up and running?
I built my portfolio throughout the summer and fall. Before that it took about a month for me to put together a website, build SEO, consult with friends and other business owners as well as get the courage to go “Facebook official” with the whole thing. When I did, the response was overwhelming and so encouraging.
6. What is your biggest regret and most proud moment during your business journey? What would you go back and do again differently?
My proudest moment so far has been the first time a random person (with no relation to me, and no mutual friends) emailed me and told me they loved my work, and asked for a session. That felt so real then. I’d only been in business a while but I felt like I was on top of the world. If I could do anything differently, I’d have done it sooner!!
7. Who, within your own industry inspires you? What about outside of your own niche? How and why do they inspire you?
My dear friend Carolyn has been such an inspiration to me through this whole journey. She’s been our family photographer for years now, and I’ve learned so much from watching and talking with her. Her style is classic and gorgeous, and she’s a master poser and editor. I’m so blessed to have a close friend that loves what I love!
8. How big of a role does being a mom play into your business?
A huge one. It has the biggest influence on how many hours I can dedicate to working, and it gives me real motivation when I’m feeling lazy or tired and don’t want to finish a project right then. I have to utilize my time when he’s asleep or playing and at the same time, limit the time I’m around him but distracted.
9. How do you achieve a work/life balance? Or how do you best try to achieve balance?
I’m very busy between a toddler and a business, on top of every day life, so I have to constantly remind myself that if I don’t do something now, I have to do it later. Starting a business has made me infinitely more efficient, because I have to be. I work during naptime, as well as one morning a week while he’s at preschool. I’m very luck to have a super supportive husband and he’s been wonderful at stepping up at home to let me work on the weekends and evenings.
10. What are your goals/next steps for your photography business?
I just want to keep getting better. I’d love to move into weddings and engagements and plan on pushing that for the next year. I hope to attend a mentoring workshop this year as well as really take advantage of every opportunity that arises.
11. What would you tell a mom just starting out with her own business?
Believe in yourself. If you’ve got the drive, it can happen.
12. Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers about being about business owner?
I’ve never felt more creatively fulfilled as I have since starting my own business. Being a Photographer with a capital P has been an amazing experience so far and I’m so glad I took that step for myself, and for my family!!