I thought when I typed the words, “wow, what a year”, it would be the most applicable to the year 2020. Now that we are nearing the end of 2021, I’m really not sure how true that stands. 2021, like 2020, had many memorable, however, possibly less than desirable days. While 2020 probably still stands out as a little harder personally, 2021 really made a valid run at the title “What a Year”. Although, 2021 is not also without its wins. Since being established as a business in 2020, during a global pandemic, there were some curve balls thrown at me. However, 2021 offered a nice business cushion and saw great growth, both as a photographer and a business owner.
Running a business has been, how can I say it, much more raw than I ever expected it to be. Just to be clear, absolutely nothing in a business runs on autopilot until you create an autopilot mode. Working out kinks and clearing the cobwebs lent itself to a massive part of my 2021. I took my business from no profit margin (in fact, we spent more on the overhead than we made in 2020), to a five-figure salary. While I didn’t pay myself out of this profit and the money was reinstalled into the business and overhead, it still gives a numeric value to the massive growth I felt as a business owner. My goal for the beginning of 2021 was to make on paper $10,000. By February, I had hit that goal. Now, staring 2022 in the face, I’m focused on keeping a five-figure salary but being able to profit after overhead with that $10,000 amount. Simply put, I can’t wait to keep loving and serving the best clients out there, and living out my dream of being full time in photography so I can also be a full time mama, especially with our third baby due in June.
Really, what made 2021 an even better year personally than 2020 had absolutely nothing to do with goal setting and reaching (though I do love both those things!) The best part of 2021 was in fact due to my amazing and lovely clients turned friends. I have the honor of serving the sweetest, most down-to-earth and beautiful clients all year round. They fill up my bucket with the love I watch them give each other as a couple, senior, or family. Deciding to specialize in weddings and seniors was also a change I experienced in 2021, which will be implemented in 2022 and years down the line. Families will be served at mini session dates, and I look forward to connecting with past clients in this way, but specializing and really focusing on my two favorite genres allows me to serve my clients better, and do more of what I love while avoiding burn out.
During my 2021, I was able to photograph 30 weddings, launch my Senior Spokesmodel experience, connect and create timeless images with several families, travel across the state of Arizona, document a surprise proposal, and photograph a few engagement sessions and couples’ sessions as well. I also continued growing as a photographer by investing in a few pieces of continuing education and business coaching calls to further my client experience and overall knowledge as a wedding photographer. But none of this means anything without my clients. Without my clients, this dream of mine wouldn’t be a reality, and without people who believe in me at my side (like my husband, family, and friends), none of this would exist.
I’m beyond thankful for a husband who says, “okay” any time I ask him for something, doesn’t bat an eye, and cares more about my happiness than he does about himself. He would give anyone (and I mean anyone!) the shirt off his back…in fact, I’ve seen him do it for a homeless man, and then PRAY for him on the spot. His love and encouragement has built at least half this business because when he says he believes in me, I know I can do anything. (Now if only I could get him to second shoot with me… ehemmm, Jordan, ehemm.) All in all, this business and this big dream with a big vision of mine is only possible with him, so if you’re a client or a future client, you really need to be thanking him, not me. 🙂
Below I’m sharing a handful of my favorite images captured while chasing this dream and the light (if you know, you know). Thank you all who have gotten me to this point. Thank you for the kind words you’ve shared about valuing my work and thinking the experience I offer is worth it. Thank you for telling me when you love your images and sharing my name with others. Word of mouth is always king, and is a great business builder, so I’m so grateful for those who have shared my work and name with others. You are seen and loved! Please enjoy these images below, and I can’t wait to see what 2022 has in store for me and you.