Photography Business: Owner to Hobbyist-8 Lessons Learned
Lifestyle

My journey with photography has been a roller coaster ride to say the least!  I am a photographer who has been in and out of a photography business (by choice) for the past six years. I want to be organic here and share with you some of my feelings and reasons why I chose recently to go from owning my own photography business to remaining a hobbyist. I know that sounds backwards, but that’s how I did it!

Before I begin, I want to make my intentions clear. Although I have decided not to be in business anymore, I applaud those photographers who have made owning a business a success for them. I admire your talent and dedication to the art and I realize that although owning a photography business is not working for me, you may be at a different place in your life where it is working for you….Or it has to work for you in order to pay your bills! This is just my story and we are all different in our circumstances and how we handle our lives.

Photography business owner to hobbyist-My lessons learned

I started in the photography industry back in college when I worked for a premier portrait photographer for six years. But it wasn’t until I got my first D-SLR, a Canon Rebel, a few years after I quit working (to be a mom) that I started personally loving photography. I couldn’t put my camera down. I was completely intrigued with learning and progressing.

I took classes and workshops, mentored with my old boss and other photographers, and started accepting invitations from friends and family to take their portraits in order to help me learn and build a portfolio.

The is one of the first family sessions that I’ve ever shot. Heads stacked (pet peeve) and super posey…haha. Everyone has to start somewhere, right?

This is the part where I’m sure many of you busy moms/photographers can relate. There comes a point where you become confident in your skills, others notice your talent, and offers come your way for payment in exchange for your newfound skills.

1. Where I made a mistake is I jumped right in and started accepting clients without setting up my photography business properly first.
I was barely keeping my head above water trying to find time to shoot and edit, let alone set up branding, a website, marketing materials, or a way to keep track of my financials. I wished all along I had a more professional brand that helped define my style better. I made a couple of make shift logos myself in Photoshop and called it good because I had no time.

I kept super busy simply on referrals, whom I had no problem booking because I was very reasonably priced. I was afraid to charge too much because I didn’t think I was good enough yet.  And many of my clients were also friends and family, so I felt guilty asking for too much.  I think that’s where many of us go wrong. We don’t have enough confidence in ourselves to charge what we need to actually compensate for our time.

2. I’ve learned that charging for your time is just as important as charging for your skills.
If you work yourself to death with very little pay, you will burn out quickly, as I did many times over.

I had a hard time saying “no” to clients because I loved the opportunities for personal growth. With every session that I did, I learned something new.  But along with each session came time spent shooting, editing, designing storyboards, albums or greeting cards, placing orders, delivering product, preparing invoices, collecting payment, transferring image files for backup or disks…etc etc.

I waaay underestimated the amount of time spent for each client!  While trying to keep up with the demand, I was also juggling being a mother of a growing family. I would go through periods of time that I absolutely had to quit accepting client work in order to keep up with the needs of my family.

Many times I was so burned out that I didn’t care if I looked at my camera again. Or pick it up for a very long time! My conscience would get the best of me and I couldn’t bear missing out on my kids’ childhoods as I sat behind my computer.

These are the things that I missed by owning a photography business…

3. I longed to be the fun mom again who does memorable activities with her kids like baking and crafts, reading stories, or having long talks together.
I felt like I was letting my kids run wild and trying to keep them busy other ways apart from me, just so I could work…bleh!

4. I stopped taking as many pictures of my own family and working on personal photography projects because I was too busy with clients.
I started to resent the fact that my priorities were messed up, that my family wasn’t coming first anymore. And that I wasn’t slowing down long enough to capture sweet interactions like this between my children (my oldest and youngest).

5. I missed photographing what I wanted, rather than what everyone else wanted from me.
And taking time to think creatively about how to capture the thoughts, feelings, and moments in my own life.

6. I missed free time to enjoy the simplicities of life like watching my son make acquaintance with an interesting bug for the first time.

Or laugh with my girls as they were actually getting along and having fun together with the bubbles in the bath tub.

7. I was also missing out on further education opportunities because my schedule was booked up and time for personal learning and creativity exercises was low on my priority list.
There is still so much more that I would like to learn about photography. I had no time to take workshops or classes when I owned a photography business. When I pulled out my camera, it was usually for clients, not for myself sadly. Although I was learning and progressing as I did sessions, I often found myself shooting the same angles, lighting and composition because it was what I was used to. I missed a good challenge to stretch my creativity.

8. One day it hit me that I can still feel validated as a photographer, learning and growing along the way, and not own a photography business!
Before, my validation came from the amount of sessions I had booked and the positive comments I would receive after clients viewed their images. Now it comes from the inner voice that speaks peace to my heart when I’ve captured my true feelings or a moment the way I had envisioned.

I absolutely LOVE photography, and also absolutely LOVE my other job…being a mother. Balancing the two is much easier as a hobbyist. And I enjoy the art in it’s fullness better this way. I don’t feel pressured to perform now. I shoot the things that move me. I take on personal challenges and have more time to experiment with new techniques now. I have fallen back in love with photography now, and am eager to pick up my camera again.

I still plan on keeping an updated portfolio on my blog in case an amazing offer I can’t refuse comes my way. Or for down the road when my kids are all in school and my days are free again, I may choose to open up my photography business again. I still plan to have an online presence on my facebook page, in forums, and on my blog where I can rally support and friendship with other photographers and friends. I need that. I love to talk “shop”…obviously by the length of this post…thanks for hanging in there with me!

The most difficult part of transitioning out of my photography business has been learning to say “no” when asked to do fun sessions. It’s hard at first, but becomes easier the more I do it and the more I realize how great it is to be absorbing the goodness of my life and hobby once again!

Are you a hobbyist or do you own a business? I would love to hear your thoughts!

61 Comments
  • June 8, 2012 at 10:42 AM

    Such an awesome story, and very inspiring. It’s great to hear that you’ve found balance between your passion and motherhood. It’s something that so many of us struggle with on a daily basis. Good for you, and thanks for sharing your journey!!!

  • Vee
    June 8, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    Awesome share! … Truly appreciate it. It’s something that i bothered too..balancing motherhood and as a business owner.
    Thanks again for sharing :-)

  • June 8, 2012 at 12:01 PM

    GREAT POST!
    I’m a hobbyist and have no desire to ever go Pro. One, I know I’m not good enough (and I’m not saying that to discredit myself, I KNOW it, and would rather spend my time learning more instead of going into business), and two, I seriously feel like going into business would take away that joy and freedom I feel from simply being able to shoot what I want, when I want. Maybe if you had started out learning the ins and outs and demands of the business first, it could have turned out differently, but maybe it turned out just the way it was supposed to, so that you could see what matters most. I think you’re combining the best of both worlds now. :)

    Thanks, again!

  • June 8, 2012 at 12:20 PM

    Thanks for sharing your story with us! I often wonder how photographers who are super busy, own their own business, and have a family, have the time and desire for personal projects. No matter what your experience level is artistic growth is extremely important for all of us :)

  • June 8, 2012 at 3:20 PM

    Thanks for your honesty. It is eye-opening to read things like this. I’m very much a hobbyist but I do wonder if I could go into business in many years when I “grow up” (when my kids are older and I’m a lot better!).
    I looove the praying mantis picture! It makes me so happy.

  • Cristin
    June 8, 2012 at 9:29 PM

    Jen-Thank you so much for sharing! I have 4 children also and I am a serious hobbyist that would love to someday own a photography business. Unfortunately, I hear your story reverberated throughout the entire photography community, and I hate the fear that is instilled before I have even started chasing my dream! I want to prepare myself for the work involved, but at the same time I don’t want to get stuck in the “getting ready” phase either. I also realize that I can’t do it all…wife, mom, business owner, so I would have to hire “HELP” in the form of a babysitter, cleaning lady, etc. Honestly, that idea doesn’t sit too well with me either. There is a need though, for me, for something of my very own, and the more I try to suppress my dream by circumstances, the more it fights to surface once again. Your “lessons learned” are so helpful, and I appreciate your authenticity :)

    • June 9, 2012 at 11:18 AM

      Cristin- I hope what I shared and the stories you’ve heard in the photography community do not stop you from chasing you dreams. You know what you can handle and what the needs of your family are. Get all your ducks in a row as far as setting up your business properly first, then go slow to see what you can handle. If it’s one session a month, great! You are still learning, but it’s not taking over your life. You just have to stick to your guns and learn to say no or space your sessions out according to what you can do. You can always pick up the pace and hire help as you grow. I understand the need to do something for yourself. Photography is definitely my creative outlet and I would do it 24-7 if I didn’t have a family who needs me. Keep following your dreams!

  • June 8, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    Jen, thank you for your honesty and for sharing your experience! I truly felt as if I were reading about myself; I’ve had a similar journey.

    I love being back at a place where I photograph because I love photography and because of the joy it brings me. I love capturing everyday moments with my family and finding the beauty in everyday things.

    I truly appreciate your post!

  • June 8, 2012 at 11:39 PM

    Thanks so much for your post Jen! I’m a hobbyist right now, hoping to one day or pro, but I fear the pressures of saying “no” and not having the confidence and so on…I love helping out with weddings as an assistant or second shooter and love being able to be creative on my own time. It has been helpful reading about other people’s successes and failures because it helps me pave my own path and when I’m ready, it will help me pursue my goal!!

  • Carmie
    June 9, 2012 at 12:38 AM

    Love you Jen–Beautiful story, thoughts, and feelings. Follow your heart.

  • June 9, 2012 at 4:20 AM

    I’m a hobbyist. I love to take pictures of sports, mainly basketball since that is what my son plays but I also like to take pictures of life happening around me. I have done a couple of sessions because people wanted pictures and I was willing to do them for free or super cheap. I don’t like to pose people, and I don’t have a lot of confidence that I will get great pictures every time so I don’t think I will ever become a professional =) I like being able to take nice pictures of my kids and their friends when I want to. Thanks for the post and sharing your thoughts, it helped me to realize that it’s okay to have a nice camera and lens and take those pictures that are important to me.

  • Christina Jack
    June 9, 2012 at 7:42 AM

    thanks so much for this. I’m in the process of starting my own business and have been feeling a little stressed as i juggle family with photography. Helped to get me back to basics!

  • Jennifer Pennington
    June 9, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    Thank you for this! I read it and thought, yup, yup, totally agree, yeah, yeah. I am a hobbyist and have been asked to shoot events for friends like parties and baptisms and the whole time was missing my family (because it’s always on a weekend) wondering why I said I would take it on?? My husband sees dollar signs and thinks it would be so easy for me to start a business so I’m thinking he should read this article!

    • June 9, 2012 at 12:39 PM

      After he sees how little time you spend with him, especially at night (thats when i edit, while kids are sleeping) he’ll start to think twice. Unless you can edit while he’s at work so you are not cutting into your normal alone time. My hubby jokes that i have a secret love affair with my computer…ha ha! Price yourself high so its worth your time away from family. However, kids don’t know how much you earn…they only know that they need their mommy!

  • Kira
    June 9, 2012 at 3:43 PM

    I keep thinking I want to be in business one of these days. But I find myself spending so much more time on the computer and less time with my kids when I take pictures for someone else. It shows up in how they act and how they feel about my camera too. I certainly need to find better balance. Thanks for this article! It was honest, from the heart, and a wakeup call too.

  • June 11, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    Thanks so much for sharing. I’ve been working through many of the things you discussed here and have come to many of the same conclusions.

    I LOVE the shot of the grasshopper. Did you use a macro lens for that?

    • June 13, 2012 at 1:21 PM

      No, I used my 24-70mm lens zoomed all the way out at 70mm and f/2.8 aperture.

  • June 12, 2012 at 10:38 AM

    Jen,

    I love this post soooooooo much!! I can relate on so many levels. I take on a few paid photo sessions per quarter and have forced myself to set limits on how involved I will get into “professional” photography (hopefully that makes sense). That allows me to shoot for others occasionally, but to still photograph my family which is what I enjoy.

    I have also had to let go of my expectations of a perfectly shot photo and return to capturing the moment even if it is on AUTO.

  • allyson
    June 12, 2012 at 12:30 PM

    I have been trying to put my butt in gear to get a business up and running for 5 years now. It has been a 8 year journey total, but I am still sitting here thinking of the things I need to have in order before I go ahead. Granted I have had a few children along the way. I read blogs of woman who have a young family and they are doing it. Blogging, photographing (for business and pleasure) and seem happy. I THINK this is what I want, to be a family photographer. Now it seems more about the challenge I set for myself. I admit I can get overwhelmed with the owning a business idea but i have been telling myself that this is what I have wanted for years.

    I am a stay at home mom and this idea of starting a photography business has been my go to, my crutch for my insecurities. I am afraid to fail and I know it’s going to be hard work, I’m not sure if I am ready or ever will be. But I still think this is what I want. Writing this I sound conflicted and confused, and I am I guess.

    I want to photograph families. True families in their element, their moments, their lives. No matching outfits or locations that they never have been before or would ever go together. I want to take the photographs that mom (or dad) would take in those intimate everyday moments. I want to be their photographer so mom and dad can be in the moment and the picture.

  • Renee Booe
    June 13, 2012 at 4:29 AM

    I just recently found your blog and really appreciate this post. I too am a military wife and SAHM and own my own business. We are moving to Japan in August and I really have no idea what that means for my business. I love what I do. But this post reminded me of why I quit my 5 days a week job in the first place, my children. It encouraged me that no matter what happens in my business while abroad I can still use my passion for photography in many ways. Thanks! God bless.

    • June 13, 2012 at 9:29 PM

      Welcome! How exciting that you are moving to Japan! We have really loved our time here! I hope you are able to find a balance for your business while abroad! I know you can!!

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  • carole pallier
    December 18, 2012 at 4:51 PM

    Thank you for sharing!
    I have just spent 4 years on the highway working with my husband in the trucking industry, we both lived in the truck it was an awesome experience, in that time I bought myself a Canon 1000D with lots of accessories and having been around photography as a child, very little I might add, but nevertheless I was smitten.

    we have since settled down into a unit, our eldest is 24 and our youngest s 21 they are all married bar one coming up on January 18th next year, so I have lots of free time inbetween casual work and study.

    I have done exactly what you are doing, taking pics of friends to buikd a portfolio and wanting to set up a business, but I would rather be a nature photographer, animals are more my thing, and macro, I am addictd to macro, I have a great lens for it and am fascinated, I see myself heading towards lifestyle photography, but after reading your story I will take things slowly and thnk about things before rushing in, thanks again.

  • Mary Ann
    January 2, 2013 at 8:09 AM

    This touches my heart in a different way. I am at the other end of life with my child raised and businesses ran and sold, but a part of me has felt like I still needed to have a business. I think I never took the word hobbyist seriously, like something beneath me when in reality, it is a goal I never recognized as pertaining to me. A deep peace came over me as I realized that the life you have chosen: paying attention to home, having fun with photography, continued learning, and still enjoying the perks of a business: name recognition, blogs, portfolios, website is what I would have chosen if I had truly recognized it as a choice. Many blessings to you and you have brought many blessings and peace to me.

    • January 3, 2013 at 12:19 AM

      Ah, thank you for sharing your thoughts. It makes me happy that you feel peace. Blessings to you as well. Trust your heart and do what makes you happy!

  • June 10, 2013 at 2:27 AM

    I’m still a hobbyist. I’m not 100% ready to take the plunge into a business as of yet. I think because of all of the changes happening in our lives very soon I just want to remain a hobbyist at least until I graduate school.

  • Meredith
    October 2, 2013 at 6:30 PM

    Found this post and it’s just wanted I needed! Thank your sharing. My hope is once my children are in school I’d like to be a newborn photographer, I have a lot to learn.

  • June 17, 2014 at 8:36 PM

    I love to cook, but don’t want to own a restaurant. One is cooking, the other is business. I love the art of photography. I don’t love the art of business. But I did love this post.

  • Anna
    June 17, 2014 at 8:55 PM

    Okay, I loved this! I am a hobbiest now, I am in love with taking pictures of my daughter and nieces and nephews. I am wanting to start my own business in the near future doing newborns and little babies. This was a very good read for me, because almost every point you made are things I never thought of in that way! Very good things for me to at least think about before staring a business. thank you for your points made and advice!

  • June 17, 2014 at 8:57 PM

    I am so right there! I feel like the only photographer who started a business before I had kids & is quitting after. In addition to having a toddler I work full time. I was spending nights & weekends getting sitters, shooting other people’s families with the hopes of quitting my FT job to spend more time with my family & it wasn’t making any sense! I still have to shush that voice that says I’m a quitter & know that timing is everything and I want my time to be with my little one right now. Thanks for sharing your story. I’d love to hear more about how you responded to inquiries. Already booked? On a break? I have one in my in box right now. Thanks!

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:07 PM

      I am pretty straight with people when I get inquiries. Right now I pick and choose what I want to accept. If it’s a good opportunity for growth I’ll accept it. Huge extended families…not so much. Line em up and shoot em is not my idea of fun! A fun young family who is willing to let me do lifestyle, yes, if it works with my schedule. I usually tell people I am only accepting a limited amount of client work right now and I’m booked up for the next several months. And I tell them I will contact them if I have an opening.

  • June 17, 2014 at 8:59 PM

    Thanks for sharing! I loved reading your thoughts/what you would do differently. I also have young children but I still love having my photography business. The way I find balance is by involving my children in my business. I have fun with them with my ideas for creative shoots..the stuff I want to shoot. They are always willing models, and I try to balance it between the three of them so they all get one on one time with me. That way I don’t feel robbed of special time with them.
    That being said, I am a full time Mommy and a part time photographer. I plan to keep it that way until they are older.

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:12 PM

      Thank you! I love the idea of involving my daughter. She has been asking me to teach her lately. I can see where they would be more supportive if they understood the art a little better! Sounds like you’ve found the balance that works for you. :)

  • June 17, 2014 at 9:29 PM

    I feel the same way as you do. I am still the owner of my business and I try to slow down and say no to the project that are comsuming my energy too much. I want to make time for my kids and personnal projects on the way. It’s so great to know that we are not alone to feel the pressure of being everything at once. And I so understand the part that you say you where leaving your kids behind to make room for your job. Sometime as business owner we have to work crazy hours. Anyway thanks for sharing your story with us. Really get me thinking.

  • Sherry Walen
    June 17, 2014 at 9:38 PM

    Jen…loved your story! I am a grama and love photography. When I retired 3yrs ago, I bought myself a gift of 2 cameras….a Nikon point & shoot, that has some nice features and a Sony nex-5 DSLR…this year for Christmas & my b’day (Dec 24th) my daughter gave me an online class with Everyday Bloom!! I would have NEVER been confident enough to shoot in manual before that class…It was a wonderful eyeopener for me to have “fun” and actually feel like I am starting to figure it all out….but I am definitely happy being a hobbyist and was super surprised when a few people have asked me if I do sittings….I said no, but what a compliment! Now I’m almost ready to move to a new lens! thank you for sharing your story…your work is gorgeous!

  • June 17, 2014 at 9:42 PM

    You just spoke my mind. Well said! I always said I would never ruin my love for photography by starting a business, but the same thing happened to me…jobs kept rolling in and now I can’t stop! Unfortunately if I do, I would have to get another job, but I feel like an 8-5 job would still give me more time to do the things I love. Ahh! Thanks for a great article!

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:39 PM

      It’s difficult as a business owner to work 8-5. Especially in the artistic field when your mind never stoprs thinking creatively! I’ve had to place restrictions on myself, such as “I can only accept 1-2 sessions per month” or “i can only work on the computer during these certain hours…ie during nap time, and not in evening when hubby comes home from work, etc. And I’ve had to learn to say no. I think owning a business can work for you if you learn to streamline your workflow and space your sessions out so you are not working long hours. Best of luck to you in finding that balance!

  • Christina Dawson
    June 17, 2014 at 10:17 PM

    Thank you so much for sharing this! My best friend and I literally made the same decision this week and we both feel relieved. We’re both mothers of toddlers and like you, felt like our families were suffering from our photography business. I also hated that I was shooting what other’s wanted and not capturing those precious moments of my own family. So bravo to you for following your heart and letting your passion for photography grow in a way that’s healthy for you and your family!

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:43 PM

      Way to go! You will never regret making time for your family. Keep challenging yourself for growth with personal projects and education, then you can go back into business at another time in your life when it works.

  • Lisa Billing
    June 17, 2014 at 10:22 PM

    As others have said, it sound like you’re telling my story…only I have a small business on the side of a career and children! Thank you for putting my thoughts into words :)

  • Kristen
    June 17, 2014 at 11:28 PM

    Great article. I could have written the same thing. I had a business… and now I don’t. But – I have a life. I do still take some jobs – but only of close friends, when I want to. I’m not stressed about getting photos done and I have time with my family. Everything you said is completely true at my house.

  • June 18, 2014 at 1:34 AM

    I intend to stay a hobbyist for these reasons! I want to take the pictures I want to take and do projects and learn and maybe take pictures of other people if I want to. I just now need to not feel bad about spending the money on a Canon 6D. Come on Christmas!

  • courful64
    June 18, 2014 at 1:59 AM

    Congratulations for getting into my head… I have been shooting since 1980…and have been and out of the business. I like the hobbi .you graph best.. you really explained it well.. nice article

  • Sari
    June 18, 2014 at 3:38 AM

    Nice story. Thanks for sharing such great ideas, feelings and advices!

  • June 18, 2014 at 8:51 AM

    Really enjoyed reading your story! I am an amateur photographer who loves to take photos, mainly of my children. I constantly have family (who love my work) tell me I should start a photography business but in reality they have no idea what is really involved behind the scences. They fail to realise that there is so much more to having a photography business than just taking photos.
    I have had family ask many times to do photoshoots with their families/children. I used to oblige (for free) but now I just stick to photographing things for me and my family as that is what I love and more importantly have time for!

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:46 PM

      Way to stick to your guns! It’s hard to say no, but feels so good when you have time to do the things you love!

  • June 18, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    Strange how things like this come into your life just when you need them…I am currently at this crossroads. I have been in the business for 7 years. I never took the time to get all my ducks in a row as far as learning, deciding what I prefer to shoot, and getting my business set up properly. I just ‘jumped’ in head first. And now…I am struggling. I was ok in the beginning. But the deeper I get into this business the more I feel that it may not be right for me. I don’t love photography anymore. I don’t love jumping at the chance to take sessions. I don’t love spend hours behind my computer editing. Something about it just feels ‘off’ to me right now. I am terrified of quitting and admitting that it just isn’t working for me anymore. I am afraid to take that leap and say ‘no’ to this business because I wanted it so much. I feel like a weight would be lifted if I walked away and then I could rediscover my love for it again. Thank you so much for telling your story. It gives me confidence to do what feels right.

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:54 PM

      Best of luck to you in making a decision. It’s so difficult to decide, but also important to love life and feel at peace with where your priorities are. If you have the luxury to scale back, you could always start there and see how it changes things for you.

  • June 18, 2014 at 1:46 PM

    I loved this article. Opening a business is so much harder than it seems. It hurts when people think you charge too much because they don’t consider it a real job. A photography business takes time away from your own family just like any other job. I’ve realized recently that I’ve been neglecting photographing my family over the past few months as I’ve gotten more busy with clients. I’m trying to take back my camera, for my family’s sake!

  • June 18, 2014 at 2:55 PM

    Hi Jennifer I read your post with admiration I have aways been a hobyist but lost my job a couple of years ago and after listening to alot of people decided to start on my own all went well to start with but like yourself it was the pricing I found hard as yourself friends family etc wanting me to photograph events etc and charging them was hard so always under charged but always said make sure you credit my work spread the word etc etc
    Then one day was sitting there just going through a old memory card I had forgotten about on it was my newest grandson from birth to 5 mths old he is now 1yrs old a couple of family events and realised I hadn’t even backed these photos up let alone edit or even put up on facebook for all to see I said to my daughter why didn’t you say about photos she said didnt want to trouble you as you always busy doing photos for customers
    So I have made the decision to get a new job and go back to being a hobyist that way my family’s memories and mine come first still got a few jobs that are paid jobs a couple of weddings and afew parties so I will still do them and enjoy it more and a bit of extra money for me to prob spend on the gramdsons haha again thank you for your post as it has helped me know I am doing the right thing for me xx

    • June 21, 2014 at 12:56 PM

      You’re welcome. Makes me happy that you can relate. Nice job in following your heart! It takes a leap of faith, but worth it in the end! Thanks for sharing your story!

  • Cairn
    June 20, 2014 at 7:49 PM

    I really enjoyed this article! I know exactly how you felt. I love hearing your process and this will help me as I might consider someday to become a professional. Right now I love shooting my kids sports and events. I am starting to have more and more people compliment my work. If feels good and at this point I don’t have all the skills to move forward yet, but this definitely lets me know things I need to do before I get started to have a chance at being able to balance family and work in photography. Right now I am happy to take the pictures I want, but I think I would love to progress someday. :)

  • Kelli
    November 15, 2014 at 1:07 PM

    this could not have come at a more perfect time. I recently made a similar decision to step back a bit from paid sessions. Being back at work full time and being a new mommy just makes “the balance” difficult. I’ve also found a bit of resentment toward my paid sessions, as the whole reason I learned photography initially was to capture those beautiful candid moments with my own family. Thank you so much for this. It really strikes a cord with me.

  • November 15, 2014 at 4:46 PM

    So I do not consider having a buissness but do have a name. I am not a LLC. I do charge but I am very inexpensive. I say yes and I say no. I would say I am more of a hobbyist or a wanna be Buisness that is scared to take the leap. I like having a full time job for the security. Great blog!!!

  • November 15, 2014 at 6:24 PM

    I have been asked many, many times to do shoots for people that would be happy to pay. The truth is, when I take photos for money, it ceases being the hobby that I love and quickly becomes a job. It becomes a job with expectations. I shoot for me. I will shoot family shots for people that I am close with, but I only do so as a favor and not for payment. That way I can do what I want, if they don’t like them, I don’t feel any obligation to give them what they want. Selfish, I know.

  • November 15, 2014 at 10:39 PM

    Thank you for sharing this! This is where I am at. Missing those moments with my kids and finding it hard to quit after I have built up a nice little business. But saying “no” to that is saying “yes” to my family. You put into words a lot of what I am feeling, so thank you for the encouragement! :)

  • Kerin
    August 19, 2015 at 8:57 PM

    Thank you for sharing. I too have been wanting to just go back to being a hobbyist. The business part is tough and I realize I have more to learn. I love taking pictures but feel I’ve lost my way and need to find it again. I’m hoping that it happens soon.

  • electric scooter
    January 22, 2016 at 3:20 AM

    They’re comfortable. bring in electric scooter all of the time.

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