Happy New Year!
I hope your 2019 is off to a great start! I photographed my last wedding of the year on the 29th, and then I took a few days to visit my mom in Arkansas with my boys. That’s always a place where I can take a little time to think, be present, sleep and recharge, and it helped me get some clarity on priorities as we get started with a brand new year.
A Look Back
First, a little context and a recap. 2018 was very tough for me and my family in personal ways. My mother-in-law died unexpectedly last spring, which devastated us. She was so full of life, joyful, generous and so much fun to be around – we’re still reeling from her loss and we miss her every day.
My father died just before Thanksgiving. He was 87 years old, he had dementia and was in poor health for some time, but there’s just nothing that can prepare you for the death of a parent. My mom and dad were married for 69 years, and my dad was such a force of nature. We still can’t believe he’s gone, and we’re all trying to get used to a world without him in it.
2018 was the year I went up two pant sizes. I’m sure it was from the stress of the year, plus too much time in front of the computer. I even had someone ask me “when are you due?” As in “when is your baby due?” For the record, I’m not pregnant – and it’s just never a good idea to ask people if they’re pregnant unless you know for sure that they are, am I right? 🙂
The loss of two of my favorite people was a big wakeup call for me to get back in shape and make real-life living – not screen living – a priority in 2019. We never know how long we have to be together.
So my one word for 2019 is “Consistency,” which for me means being consistent, steady and disciplined in everything from exercise, healthier eating, and rest to my client workflow systems and social media posting. It sounds like such a boring and typical goal, right? But I’m a true believer that doing small things consistently adds up to big, real, life-transforming changes.
My fitness goals include doing at least 30 minutes of exercise each and every day. My secret weapon is the Betty Rocker home workout program (because I’ve tried the gym, but I just don’t have time to drive to the gym in addition to working, driving my kids to school and back, helping with homework and doing #allthethings that I need to do. So I found this in-home solution that works for me.) I’m already 15 days into my first 30-day challenge, and I can already tell a big difference!
Making time and space for quality time with my family is a big priority, and I’ve already scheduled vacation time to make sure it happens. We’re heading to the beach in June, and to Switzerland in August! I’m so excited about this big adventure!
Professionally, 2018 was an exciting and challenging year of growth and milestones. Here are some highlights:
I taught my first photography workshop – a three-hour, hands-on bridal portrait workshop at Story Forge in Nashville, sponsored by Paul C. Buff Professional Lighting Equipment and Story Forge! It was a success and so much fun, and I already have plans for another workshop. (Stay tuned!)
My work was featured in a national advertisement by Paul C. Buff in Professional Photographer Magazine.
One of my bridal photos was featured on the Paul C. Buff blog, “Story Behind the Shot.”
My maternity photos of Asa Orbison (wife of Roy Orbison Jr.) were featured on People.com !
And I worked with amazing wedding planners and vendors and the most wonderful brides and grooms, which is really what makes this job meaningful to me.
Here are five of my professional goals for 2019
- Using my studio space for more sessions, especially romantic boudoir and mini portrait sessions. I did three boudoir sessions last year, and I really wanted to do more but I ran out of time and weekends. I have some exciting things in mind and can’t wait to share more details soon!
- Getting on camera more in my Instagram stories and sharing more of my photo business process and day-to-day life. This is not easy for me! I’m on the introvert side, and being in front of the camera doesn’t come naturally for me, but I’m going to do it anyway.
- Doing more lifestyle family, maternity and newborn sessions as my sweet wedding couples are growing their families! I already have some of these sessions lined up for January, February and April, and I’m excited to grow this side of my business and show more of these images on IG.
- Continuing to grow in my wedding work! Two big goals are an educational video project that’s in the works, and I’m adding streamlined processes to get wedding images delivered to my couples faster to up-level their experience even more. I’m also continuing my own ongoing education in this genre that I love through workshops, because there’s always more to learn.
- Continuing to spread the word about my mitzvah work and making the client experience even more special! I photograph bar mitzvahs and bat mitzvahs regularly, and I want to showcase these more, so I’m adding a special section to my website just for mitzvahs.
- Continuing to use my photography to help others by volunteering for Flashes of Hope, a nonprofit organization that provides photographs of children with life-threatening illnesses.
Thanks for reading this long post,
and cheers to moving forward with open hearts, gratitude and joy!