I came into this year with no vision boards, no plans and no idea what the hell I was going to do with my photography career... I had all the gear and no idea.
January 2018 hit like a slap to the face... I was unprepared for the year to come. I knew I wanted out of my basic 9am to 5pm office job and so not long after the year had started I did exactly that and moved into another career path to pay the bills while I work on my photography. And before you start thinking "oh here we go Demi rambling on about her bloody back story of how she became a photographer" well.... "EEEHHHHHHHHHH" you're WRONG! This is simply the recap of the amazing 2018 and what I learnt on my journeys and from my mistakes.
So anyway... I started a new job in early February at a children's service taking on a traineeship to complete a certificate III in childcare services as well as building that photography career up. Whilst unprepared and with no real idea of where I was headed, I knew one thing, and that was I wanted to branch out throughout my community and get my name known as a photographer or at least my company's name out there so that hopefully within the following 12-24 months I could take this gig full-time. And so I sent myself on a mission... To begin this mission I told families at the service about my photography, I regularly posted in the local notification facebook pages, I booked clients that I didn't know which was different because only in the previous year the majority of my work was coming from family friends and relatives, and I also started to offer my services for not just weddings and engagements but for events and small projects.
It came to the middle of the year and I had worked a few weddings by myself and with other companies. My experience and knowledge was expanding and I was so grateful that people could actually start recognising me as a photographer! Throughout the middle of the year was my most experimental. I started to explore different aspects of photography such as maternity.
I had organised with my best friend Erin (who is an amazing hair stylist from Sydney now working in Newcastle) and a make up artist from Singleton (known as Olivia Richards Makeup Artistry) a maternity shoot for a mother from the service I was working at who was pregnant at the time. After much organising we all met up at a salon and made this mumma look amaze-balls!!! And then we moved on out to the farm and started shooting! This was epic! Not only had I connected with two local businesses, I had also branched out to a local mum to be and helped her feel amazing for the day during the end of her pregnancy which we all know can just be exhausting! It was a win win all around, I got the shots, both businesses got advertisement and the mumma was feeling HAAAWWWTTTT and totally pampered! She also scored a few shots to keep! And this was the beginning of my roots growing through this small town. I then journeyed out towards Bulga on one sunny weekend during the middle of the year and captured a few corporate shots for a guy that worked for a local mine. This was not something that I had done before but was happy to lend out my services in order to talk to someone new about my photography with the hope that my name would be struck in a future conversation he may have with someone looking for a photographer. And thats the aim of the game...
You see, while this may seem controversial or strike a few cords it is in fact true that we in Singleton live in a small town that thrives from word of mouth whether it be good news or bad news you can be sure that someones got a whiff of some hot gossip before the local Argus does and evidently it spreads like wild fire. And with this is thought in mind, I wanted to strategise this throughout 2018 while building my business. Making sure I go above and beyond for every client whilst talking to the community and being involved as much as I can so that people could start spreading the name of this business. I wanted people to realise that I am here and ready to capture those beautiful moments that somewhat become forgotten in the near future. And so with much hard work through this communication method and all the blood sweat and tears that go into pushing an identity to exist on social media I finally started to notice the likes, comments and shares rolling in as well as the clients...
I had also scored a daycare photo gig which you guessed it was at the service I worked at... But hey! I got the gig and got to work with some awesome kids! It was something different from what I usually photographed and opened my eyes to a whole other world of photography. I was so happy with the outcome and with the compliments of my work being poured in like a warm hot chocolate. And this allowed my business to be advertised throughout the service as well as have families enquire with me about doing some family sessions! It was an amazing opportunity and something I would look forward to doing again!
It came toward the end of the year, that stage in the year where your just off the halfway mark but not quite close enough to the end to start the Christmas shopping and I started to book more weddings for the following year, write more blogs and even form a youtube channel. I thought since I had taken off like a big red rocket I would start to create new goals. And with the thought of my traineeship finishing in February of 2019 and me being jobless I started to think about what I should do. Should I take this full time? Should I get a casual job while I try and take this full time? Should I go drive trucks? Nobody could tell me what I should be doing because at the end of the day it is up to me and while at the moment it is still one of the hardest decisions with so much to consider I am set on making a full-time photography career only just trying to figure it all out realistically. I recently set a poll on instagram with 95% of my following telling me to take this big step and while that was amazing and really inspired me to do so there were some fears and concerns. Will I have enough clients week to week to sustain an income that will pay my mortgage? Will I stand out from the rest of the local photographers in Singleton and Newcastle? Is it too hard? Can I wrap my head around GST and BAS and all that jazz?
Questions I am finding I am asking myself every 3 seconds like a fish in a bowl swimming around being surprised by that one bubble that has been there every time its swam a circle.
Therefore I am ending my 2018 like I did 2017 only slightly more experienced and sure of my photography art making skills. I still have no plan. I still have no ideas. And I am probably more confused than I was going into 2018 but for those who knew my well know that I am one who does everything last minute and somehow flukes a lot! And so I end this blog still unsure of my future and with no idea on how in the world I am going to take this full-time. But at least I can say I am going to give it a red hot crack! And please remember to like, share and comment my posts and get in contact with me in regards to a session or if you'd just like to have a chat! Bring on 2019!!!