As this week comes to a close, and I ponder the possibilities of what to do on New Years Eve when you’re Old (I’m thinkin' frozen pizza and in bed by 10?) I’ve also been reflecting on the past 12 months and what a huge transition this year has been for me both personally and professionally.
I have been contemplating putting fingers-to-keyboard and talking a little bit about this year on my blog for a while, but I’ve been dreading sitting down to actually do it, because 1.) I am photographer…a ~visual~ storyteller. and words are not my thing. I am so self-conscious about my writing (hence most of my blog posts being about the character count of a tweet) and 2.) because how do you reflect on 365 days (♬ 525,600 minutes ♬) and almost 100 photo shoots in a single blog post?
Let’s go back to January. I had this cute little red notebook my mother gave me for Christmas, and I decided to write down a few Goals For 2015 on the back pages. I figured if I wrote them in the back and didn’t meet any of them it would be ok cause they’d be hidden. You know. No pressure. I wrote them down and I forgot about them, until a couple of weeks ago when I was cleaning my office out and found that cute little red notebook...
I wrote down that I wanted to Escape the Cubicle. I wanted to leave the corporate job that I’d held for the last two years in favor of becoming a Full Time Photographer. The thought was terrifying. The reality was barely conceivable. I’d always had a full-time job! A weekly paycheck! My parents, I think, were pretty convinced if I took this path I would be a Starving Artist for the rest of my life.
I wrote down that I wanted to book 10 weddings. The most I had ever shot on my own in one year prior to 2015 was less than 5. 10 seemed like a solid number.
I wrote down that I wanted to photograph a styled wedding shoot.
I wrote down that I wanted to have some of my images published on a wedding blog. Any wedding blog.
I wrote down that I wanted to be published in a magazine.
I wrote down that I wanted to get my ass back to yoga class.
Fast forward to December 30th. I’m writing this post while still in my clothes from yoga class so I guess we can cross that one off the list! :)
I left my job in May. It was like jumping out of an airplane and not knowing if your parachute was going to deploy. I was so unbelievably scared, but with the unending support of the amazing man I get to call my boyfriend, my wonderful mentor and soul sista Jen, and and the warm and helpful community of Maine photographers and wedding industry professionals I am surrounded by, I think my parachute opened. It’s December and I’m still here! And although it was a big move, it feels wonderful to say that I am truly happier than I’ve ever been in my life. I love my job, I love being my own boss, and I really, really love yoga pants. (Can I get an amen, self-employed people!?)
This year I shot 19 real weddings, two fake weddings, lots of engagements, and many beautiful families. I met so many wonderful clients, many of whom have become good friends.
So, that is to say I photographed not one, but two styled wedding shoots! They were each as magical as I thought they would be. Both Ashley (A Styled Affair) and Emily (Emily Elizabeth Events) are talented beyond belief, and I could not be more honored to have been able to photograph their beautiful visions.
I was published on a wedding blog! And not just any wedding blog...
And yesterday I received a beautiful copy of one of the three magazines I will be published in in the coming months.
For all these accomplishments, I am unbelievably, indescribably grateful. I want to stress that I could absolutely not have done any of the things I set out to do this year without the incredible support of the community around me, and the support of my friends and family. As 2015 comes to a close, I’m going to give myself permission to pat myself on the back. But only for like 10 seconds, because it’s time to get back to work, for gods sake! ;)
To finish off this post, I would like to give a shout-out to the absolutely insanely incredible and wonderful and sweet couples and families I had the privilege of working with this year. I love you ALL so much, you don’t even know. You helped me build a gorgeous portfolio that I am so proud of, and for that, I cannot thank you enough.
so much love. so so so much.
Cheers!! and see you all in 2016.