By industry standards, when I made the leap from hobbyist to full time photography career I wasn’t ready. However, sometimes a leap of faith is exactly what we need to see some of our biggest dreams come to life.
I had been working as a teller in a bank for nearly 4 years and my hubby and I had been married for a year and a half when I became pregnant with my son. It was a shock and at the same time a wonderful surprise. But financially we weren’t quite ready and my photography business (although growing) was in no way consistent enough to merit me quitting my secure and stable job at the bank to be at home with my son. Through some unfortunate pregnancy complications I had to go on leave a full 6 weeks before my maternity leave was scheduled to begin. It was a tough pregnancy, a rough labor, but my gosh, one look at my little boy’s face and my whole world was flipped upside down. That’s when I knew – there was no way on earth I could go back to working the 9-5.
After only 6 weeks it was time to return to work. We were still so unstable with our finances that we NEEDED our pay checks to come in every two weeks; however, I knew I NEEDED to be home with my son more. So, I dropped off my keys in the mailbox with a letter of resignation, and walked away through a door I knew couldn’t be opened again.
That’s when I hit the ground running.
I started trying to find ways that could set me apart from the other photographers in my area; ways that I could be different. I watched hours upon hours of videos on business, marketing, and social media. I experimented with getting out of my comfort zone and did everything and anything I could think of to make money each month. I sold clothing, props, sewed baby pacifier clips, crafted headbands… you name it, and I did it. You know what? Some how we never missed a bill. I was pregnant again only 3 short months after my son’s birth, and after my daughter, Adelyn, was born I spent 3 whole months doing exactly what most professional photographers would frown upon. I did a lot of shoots for free. I chose clients who had interactive and large social media reaches. I did sessions that represented the style and direction I loved and wanted to pursue. And I did everything with the intention of expanding my reach and bringing in fresh clientele. From those simple things — for being able to sacrifice time and effort and in some cases my own money, to invest into my business, I expanded my following from a few hundred to a few thousand within a matter of months.
Being a stay at home mom with a thriving business is no easy task. I work harder than I ever have, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I’m a firm believer that when you set your mind to do something, absolutely nothing is impossible to achieve.
Amy Groth- Guest Blogger