Wow…it’s been awhile! At the end of last year, the busy-ness of my life was spiraling beyond my control, and I vowed that if I ever got a break (which I finally did, around January), I’d take a year “off”, as a sabbatical of sorts. I needed a little space and time to explore little moments with my family (like doing arts and crafts with and taking photos of my own children), to work toward some personal goals, to travel. We experienced the death of my mother-in-law earlier this year, as well, which was absolutely unexpected and devastating. Even though my time off was already on the horizon, her passing really had a profound affect on me and on my decision to take time off, going forward. I realized what I already knew but hadn’t truly accepted: that life is very brief. My moments with my children and family are numbered. I don’t know by how long. So it’s important to be sure they are the priority, always. My work life had started to permeate my home life in 2011, and 2012 was the time for all that to change.
The biggest change for me was to limit the number of sessions I accepted and to stop worrying about my social media/online posting (Facebook biz page, Twitter, blog), which was always a source of stress for me (am I posting enough?? What should I put up next that would interest people?? Did I blog this week?). Who cares, right? In the end, it really hasn’t mattered or affected my business that I stopped posting. I’m not really sure how much it ever really helped my particular business in the first place, but I just always felt “better” knowing that I was putting stuff out there to be hopefully be seen. And I realized, by taking nearly this whole year off from my business’ social media, that that act alone was enough to free up a large percentage of my time. So I decided to nix the social media and just photograph when I was able to do it around my family, and it has created an incredibly rewarding shift for me. It has helped me firm up my “why” for photography (why do I love it? what area am I most interested in pursuing at this point in my life?), and it has helped me to truly enjoy my sessions. I really do need to catch my blog and Facebook session up with this year’s images, though, because I have had some incredibly lovely clients and have enjoyed working with them so much on their imagery. I’ll try to do that soon. In the meantime, I am prepping for the Marine Corps Marathon–just two weeks away but MONTHS along in training!–which has been a part time job in and of itself just to log the running miles (but I’ve loved every single minute….that’s a whole other blog post, which I will write soon). I also will be spending time in NYC next month where I’ll be working on my fashion photography craft and business and spending some quality time with my friends there in the City. Can’t wait to come back with lots of stories and inspiration for my 2013 editorial work (and which may also mean some cool new things for my boutique senior portrait clients, as well). Also, I’m continuing to grow my Rodan + Fields Dermatology business, which has been a phenomenal tandem service to my photography clients and beyond. To read more about the importance of great skin for photos (and, more importantly, how to get it!), be sure to visit my previous blog post [HERE] and my separate R+F website [HERE] (don’t forget to do the new, customized facial analysis to discover your unique “Perskinality“–it actually analyzes your photo/webcam shot as part of the e-consultation!).
So, anyway, that’s the quick 411 update on me. I am excited about how the experiences and training from this year will influence my work in 2013, and I look forward to sharing that more regularly with you. Here is a quick look at one of my beautiful senior clients, Elizabeth, who is actually applying to my alma mater, Penn (the University of Pennsylvania). We had a few giggles about the perennial question we always get as Penn students/grads: ”Oh, so Penn State??” ;) Nope. If you’re a Penn grad, you’ll know what I mean. It confuses people. lol Elizabeth, featured here, is a total doll, and I cannot wait to hear about all the big things she does in the future! She is a true gem!
And a behind-the-scenes iPhone shot of the making of that last photo….thank you to Elizabeth’s mom for capturing the moment and sending it to me!
Have a fantastic week!! Feel free to leave comments or input in the comment section below!