In a business as decidedly lonely as photography, it is vital to network with people who constantly push you to succeed and share in your joy without jealousy. Maybe I’m just lucky, but I’ve had the good fortune of forming great friendships with some very talented photographers in Baltimore – photographers who believe in sharing information, sharing opportunities, sharing in success and constantly pushing ourselves to be better in order to benefit the industry as a whole.
Early on in my business, I decided to cast aside the fear of rejection and just go ahead and start a conversation with some local photographers. I wasn’t sure how well-received my emails would be, but I thought to myself “hey, what do I have to lose?!” I can’t remember exactly what I said, but surprisingly every single one responded to me with kindness, words of encouragement and a willingness to meet face to face. I was really kind of shocked to be honest, since I was sure someone would say “no way! Who do you think you are?” Looking back, I am so glad I took that leap and started a conversation with these women because they are now my closest photography friends – people who share my passion, share my fear, share my joy.
Having these relationships in my life has built my confidence in both my business + my photography. I can talk to them about the struggles of volunteering my time at a shelter, struggles with client sessions, any technical issues I’m facing, business decisions I need to make, constructive feedback on images… anything, really. If I am having a bad day, I can vent to them without feeling judged because I know they understand exactly where I’m coming from.
So as I leave Maryland and start a new chapter in my life, I want to take a moment to thank you ladies – for your friendship and support. I know I wouldn’t have grown as much this year without these relationships, so I am truly grateful to know each and every one of you.
- Brittani – thank you for always being so supportive and positive. Your kind words inspire me to try harder to be better. I’m so glad we’ll finally get to meet face-to-face when I move to South Carolina. It’s nice to know someone who has gone through the challenges of relocation successfully so I’m sure I’ll be picking your brain!
- Mary – thank you for our monthly Chipotle lunches, swapping foster dog stories and giving me a shoulder to cry on when I needed to vent. It’s nice having someone who shares your passion for helping animals + photography. Whenever I’m back in Baltimore, I’ll let you know so we can grab lunch and catch up. And if you’re ever in my neck of the woods, please call!
- Lori – thank you for trusting me and giving me much-needed encouragement when I was first starting out. You should be so proud of all you have accomplished with your business. I only hope I can find the successes someday that you have! Oh and thanks for passing along that referral opportunity too – that really meant a lot to me!
- Jenny – thanks so much for your ideas and constructive feedback. It has made me take a closer look at my photography + business – in ways I probably wouldn’t have before.
- Teri – thank you SO much for giving me the amazing opportunities to assist and shoot weddings with you this fall. I am forever grateful and I know you will continue to do great things with your business. You are super talented and I’m going to really miss volunteering beside you at BARCS. I know they are in good hands down there
Everyone should be so lucky to have such a supportive network of fellow artists. When I began my journey into photography, I never would have imagined I would score a whole new set of really amazing friends. I am truly blessed. You all are welcome to come visit me in Charleston anytime! I just hope that I’ll find another great set of photography friends down in Charleston.