Celebrating this big thing!

I'm having a virtual party and you are invited! #10yearsanniversary

I've been officially married to my photography business for 10 years this year. Yes! On May something-something in 2009 I received the submitted paperwork from the law firm I hired to establish an LLC for me and I was officially "in business".

I remember a few months before - I was telling my friend Julie that "by that time next year I'll have my own studio space". I'm pretty sure I didn't believe in that myself. But I did get the studio space, and I even gentrified it by then (Julie helped me by the way - thank you darling!). THAT... surprised even me. The boldness I took this unimaginably difficult endeavor to with... Dayum. I wish I had some of that now, when I'm a somewhat seasoned business owner and a lot less optimistic in a lot of ways.

People ask me often - what advice would you give yourself 10 years ago? Ugh. I cringe and think to that "don't do it! It will never be what you want it to be!" But the truth is - I didn't know what I wanted it to be. I thought that shooting pictures was all I wanted. And it took me a long a winding path to get where I am today. Content with what I'm doing and not wanting to trade it for anything else (bad days aside). So I stick to other bunch of advices instead.

In May 2019 (exactly 10 years later) I received a trademark paperwork from my amazing law firm for the Power Portraits®. And that's when I felt a little dizzy. Good dizzy, of course! It was one of those rare WOW moments for me.

Today I wonder, does anyone have a straight path in life? Is it ever possible? If you are one of the people who LOVE what they do - how did you get here? Did you always know you wanted to be where you are? Or did you have it like me - poking around in the dark, without much of a system, and a lot of guesstimates as to where you want to go next?

Today, I can proudly say that it took me 10 years to figure out what and who I don't want to photograph, and who I definitely shouldn't photograph. And what to offer them in addition to the photography service. I have poured my heart into figuring out everything related to branding online and digital marketing. And now when it's time to pitch - I have ZERO hesitation. Because I know how much freaking value they get when they work with me. And this sense of confidence cannot be replaced by anything in the world. And there's always room for growth. Which is the most exciting. Blah blah blah. Someone please get me off this chair.

Congratulations to me!

PS: to those who have a business partner... would you please kiss them for me, because they deserve to know how important they are in your life. Because going it alone is FREAKING HARD. I know it better than anybody. I don't know how this is related to the beginning of the post, but I thought it'd be awesome to throw into this soup of the emotions and accomplishment.

Irina LeoniComment