I'm sitting here this morning in my warm studio (I got a decent heater friends!) and celebrating the small amount of routine I get back today as we move to Level 3! I remember last year's lockdown was a shock and became all about just simply surviving each day of the unknown. This time around lockdown has certainly had a different feeling for me. I guess we know what lockdown is like now and my mind instead turns to questions like 'is this just the way the world is going to be now?'...
Anyone else feeling the same? How are my fellow small business peers doing?
So I thought I would jump on the blog and give you a bit of an update with where I'm at business-wise with Covid...
Mostly, I'm wishing I had a crystal ball to predict the future as I work to reschedule portrait shoots and our first wedding of the season! 😭 And I know you all probably have the same feelings! It's SO hard to make any kind of plan when the future is so uncertain.
I've had some conflicting information around being able to work in Level 3. But ultimately I've decided it's not really feasible to shoot during Level 3 as my work often requires close contact, sometimes significant travel, plus extended family sessions or lifestyle newborn sessions are simply out of the question under the current parameters. However I look forward to Level 2 and being able to resume business operations safely in full as soon as possible!
In the meantime - any clients booked in for September are welcome to contact me anytime with any questions or concern.
Product delays: I currently have many product orders delayed as my album & framing company are based in Auckland, so until they are operational again sadly current orders are in limbo. I'm of course keeping all clients affected updated.
Prints: My online print store is open! Whether you're looking to get some more of your portraits printed from a past session, or if you'd like to browse my Print Shop with a collection of NZ landscapes I've taken on past adventures - grab a print to freshen up a wall in your home! I really do appreciate the support, especially in challenging times.
Spring Mini Sessions: I still have spaces for my September Spring Mini Sessions which I would love to fill, so if you're dreaming of doing something fun to shake off that post lockdown feeling why not grab a $250 mini session and get some new family photos in time for Christmas presents?! More info & booking here: 2021 Spring Mini Sessions
Summer goals: You guys know I'm a goal-setter and a dreamer, so it will come as no surprise that instead of twiddling my thumbs and focusing on the present shitty situation we find ourselves in I've been making goals for this summer season because it is going to be EPIC and AMAZING. (I'm manifesting hard out here!!! 👐). And one of my goals is to book more Portrait Sessions this summer! I am loving my portrait sessions and now that we limit ourselves to a maximum number of weddings each month/season I have time for more portrait work. 🥳 I would love to hear from you if you've been thinking of updating your portraits - let's get planning something fun & personalised to you! You can find out more about my portraits here: Portraits
Next week I will have been full-time in my business for FIVE years!!! For some reason today that wee fact only just sunk in. I mean I knew it was coming up but suddenly the reality that I have been doing this amazing job, working for myself and pursuing my dreams full-time for five years just hit me. And my first thought was what am I doing to celebrate?! Because this is a huge milestone!!!
I started this business after 8 years in accounting. My passion for photography grew from a hobby until it became my dream full time job on the 20th of July 2016! I will never forget that day - I was EXCITED and nervous. Scared to take the leap but so ready at the same time. I'd been slowly reducing my hours at work as my summer months got busier with weddings until finally there came a tipping point. I had told myself that even if I just gave "going full-time" a go for 12 months, and if it didn't work - well at least I had given it a shot. I always had my degree to fall back on right?
Man I should have backed myself more! Haha. I haven't looked back since that day five years ago. I can't imagine working a 9 to 5 again. Sure there are days when I wish I could just call in sick and there are times when I wish I wasn't the boss, the cleaner, the receptionist and the worker all in one. Those first few years were pure hustle and I still work harder for myself than I ever did for my employers (sorry guys!) but I guess that's part of self-employment.
These last five years have flown by and yet they've also been crammed full of adventure. I love being a photographer so much. My career as an accountant seems like a lifetime ago already. I have so many dreams, hopes and goals for the next five years in business. But before I get too soppy I actually would love your advice...
What do you do to celebrate your wins? Whether you're self-employed or not, your wins in life and/or business - I'd love to hear what you do to celebrate milestones. I'm a total believer that we should recognise, celebrate & reflect on these moments in our lives and I'd love to do something to mark this occasion of five years next week. Send me some inspiration team! xx
Not so long ago I would have had severe business anxiety from not having posted on social media for almost two weeks, let alone not having blogged at all for over a month! I used to religiously post new content five times a week all year round!!! But at some point I learnt that in fact the world doesn't stop if I don't share anything for a week, nor does anyone hold it against me when I choose not to check emails outside work hours and have you even noticed that I turned off my Facebook page messages?? (Now if you contact me on my page it is via email, simply because FB messages were a headache to keep a track of!).
I don't actually think I've written a blog post this year that hasn't been client work! So today I wanted to change that. I wanted to check in and say hi. So 2020 hey?! It's going to the be the year we never forget that's for sure. We were having the best wedding season - steady, beautiful and full of fun. Then enter a global pandemic and eight weeks of cancelled weddings and portrait sessions! I'm so grateful we're out the other side and thankful that I'm able to be back shooting. But now it's winter, the weather is miserable and I haven't had much portrait work to share. Winter has always been my season of hibernation and recharging, we don't shoot many winter weddings (this year none!) and I get to work on other projects. But this year it feels like I already did my hibernation... during lockdown! Yet I'm still choosing to see the silver linings that this year has offered. Never have I had a better time to realign myself to my goals, work on forgotten projects and to bring some ideas to life. Both with life and with business.
Besides work there's been a whole lot of family time, knitting (yes knitting), biking, binge watching Suits on Netflix and getting thoroughly addicted to playing Monopoly Deal!
Today I cleared my very cluttered desk in my home office so that it would be an appealing place to sit and work again. I've created a bad habit of working from the couch or kitchen bench for long hours and I realised I need to make better choices for my productivity and for my back! This week I'm also working on launching my spring mini sessions (keep your eyes peeled for these - they were a hit last year!) and among other things I'm putting ideas to paper for an online editing course. I've got a couple of speaking engagements coming up, the odd portrait session here & there plus the usual winter camera gear servicing mission before next wedding season!
So while I might seem a little MIA online over winter, I promise you I'm here - working away at my desk on all my winter projects. I've just swapped my usual summer wedding day attire for yoga pants and slippers as I do my annual winter hibernation. x