My photography journey hasn't been the smoothest of rides, and I'm sure I'm not the only one out there with a crazy story! I began dabbling in the photography world in high school with a traditional photography class. We learned how to operate an "old school" SLR with film, we learned how to develop our own images in a black room, we learned how to be creative with our images. This is where I first fell in love with the art of photography. From there, my photography career began by capturing a few special moments for one of my best friends. She picked up on my love for photography (which I hadn't really picked up on myself yet!) and asked me to take pictures of her while she was pregnant, asked to capture her small wedding, as well as some mommy and me pictures! Granted this was over a couple of years time but I was still blown away!! That got me thinking that I could really turn my passion into something bigger.
I dove in head-first to this new adventure. I starting doing some portfolio building. I signed up with some online courses with the fabulous Rachel Brenke. I began to get really into photography but my life started catching up with me quickly. I decided that I wanted to go back to school to get my masters, which made my life a little more crazy but manageable since I was planning on taking things one class at a time. Then David (my hubby) and I began talking about starting a family and I got pregnant. Then it hit me. Worry. Fear. I was convinced that I couldn't wear all these hats. The teacher. The student. The small business owner. AND the mom... Something had to give. It was with a very heavy heart that I decided to step back from photography. It was one of the hardest decisions I've had to make. Photography was (and still is) more than just another hat. It's something I enjoy. It was something I had put a LOT of time and effort into through educating myself with courses, research, and blogs - not to mention camera time. Not only that, but I had put a lot of money into it as well. I will step out and say that photography is a very expensive job. There's software, equipment, props, education, AND time. Regardless, I decided the best bet was to sell all of my props and keep my equipment. I didn't want to give it up as a hobby, I just knew that I wouldn't have enough time to commit to it as a job.
My "last session" was a newborn session in February 2013. It was bitter-sweet to say the least. As I was cuddling and posing Mr J, I was constantly reminded that this is why I chose to step away. Soon, I will have my own little newborn and my life will change forever. Fast forward to July 2013, only five short months after my "last session". I was asked by a good family friend to shoot a wedding. It was a second wedding for my friend's mom and she just wanted something low key to capture the memories. Of course, I was beyond excited to do this! It was this wedding that brought me back into business. After everything I had sold and everything I had done to mentally prepare myself for no longer doing photography as a business. It all changed. It was crazy how much I really loved shooting, culling, and editing these images. I still remember that I was in the middle of culling and I got up and went over to my husband. I sat him down and told him that I can't give this up. I told him how much I truly enjoyed every little part of what I was doing and how much I had missed it in the short five months that I had stepped away from it. It was then and there that I decided that I would once again dive in head-first to this business. I came back even more passionate and eager to learn. I wanted to push myself to do my best. I once again began to build my portfolio to let the world know that Wood Photography was back in business, I signed up for a workshop, I began putting myself out there, I invested in props again, and I began making and planning some big business changes ... I wanted to create a website, start a blog, invest in new equipment. I was coming back and I was determined to come back strong. I even took a semester off school so that I could focus on my business and figure out my workflow so that I can easily juggle my many hats for the next year and a half.
So here's to meeting those goals and coming back strong.
Here's to pushing the envelope.
Here's to success :)
Thanks to the lovely Brannan Blascak Photography and Design for these head shots <3