I’m back from a week in St. Louis at the Shutterfest photo workshop. Learned a few tricks to make my images and my business thrive! But that’s not the big news.
There’s no party planned, but today is a big day! Today is the one year anniversary of opening my studio on the Fayetteville Square, as well as the FIVE year anniversary of when I marched down to the courthouse, paid $25 and filed papers to make Ironside Photography a business.
I graduated from the University of Arkansas Honors College in August of 2010 with a B.S. in Biology and Anthropology. I had known I wanted to pursue photography professionally, but had never taken an art or photo class in college. My first couple of years in business were FULL of errors and mistakes, but I learned from them and moved on. 2013 is the year I consider my first “real year” in business (AKA the first year I made what could be considered a salary), and it’s grown quickly from there.
In that time I’ve gotten paid to travel to India, China, and Bolivia, and around the U.S. I’ve met presidents, shaken the hands of billionaires, and had the freedom to set my own schedule, and created many a family heirloom. I’ve gone from learning to teaching — though, of course, I’m always still learning. I even opened a brick & mortar studio on the downtown square a year ago, and haven’t closed it yet — an uncommon thing in this business.
Here’s a comparison of an image from a 2007 portrait shoot, and one from late last year. We all have our growing pains.
I can’t thank all of you enough for all of the support you’ve given me over the years. From those who gave me advice on what equipment to buy, to those who were nice enough to pay me for those early portrait sessions, to those who encouraged me to pursue a passion, thank you. At 27, my dreams are already being realized, and that’s something I try to appreciate whenever I can. I’m still learning and growing, and figuring out where I want my career to end up, but it’s been one hell of a ride so far.