5 Years ago:
* I began charging a fee for my ability to use the tool of a DSLR camera
* I set up legal documents to become a biz with the sole purpose of being able to have the ability to write off all of the very expensive equipment I knew I would be acquiring for my very expensive ‘hobby’
* I chose a name that reflected a bit of whimsy (I was photographing children, after all) as well as a nod to my ‘studio’ space — which was ‘any where under the big bluesky’ as I was a 100% natural light photographer (aka: I didn’t know any other forms of lighting. lol)
— A LOT HAS CHANGED SINCE THEN
To spare you the list of ‘pat on the backs,’ ‘financial successes’, and self-congratulatory sounding accolades –I will just say, I think Ive become pretty legit:-) **If you’d happen to like to read more on my experience becoming an entrepreneur–you can check out my post here or here..)
Truth: I had no intention to become a photographer (though I had always known I would be an entrepreneur, was a journalism major and was pretty much always ‘the girl with the camera.’ (Photographer cliche’ much?) I cannot say ‘I have always known’…quite the contrary.
However, since ‘accidentally’ (no-such-thing) having my photography business become my sole means of fiances–I have changed/grown and transitioned to a place where I have a better understanding of why I have been ‘called’ to leave a lucrative corporate job (much to my husband’s puzzled expression and smaller bank account.) I have determined though I am
many some of the things you may think of when envisioning a photographer: creative, artistic etc. My reason for continuing to dedicate my time and energies to this lies squarely in the amazing power of having the ability to uncover the often not-so-obvious confidence and beauty of the clients I work with. (Make no mistake: these qualities have always been there…I just have the ability to highlight them…boldly.)
I have come to learn this is the reason I often hear clients say ‘this is the first picture I love of myself.’ Or, ‘I have never seen my husband look at me that way.’ In this, I have found my ‘why.’ –to create the confidence needed in those around me to allow them to be unabashedly themselves. I make it Visible and Tangible through my images. (When the ‘right’ clients walks away from their experience with me they should feel just a little more…emboldened.)
For whatever reason, (you’ll have to ask my therapist) as best as I can recall–I have always been a confident person. I grew up in a fairly volatile family (sorry parents–its true.lol) often with little money (I can remember a Christmas with no heat, huddled around an open oven door to stay warm. BUT WE HAD DONUTS YOU GUYS!!! So..all was clearly not lost.) And, like all of us, my ‘mess’ has made me who I am. And, though mine was in fact pretty ‘messy’–I somehow evolved into a person who has never really doubted herself. Has always thought she had beautiful qualities. (and let me be clear–some not-so-beautiful.. #workingonit )
I have also learned THIS IS NOT the case for many. (Sadly) Humans are filled with so many insecurities, doubts and straight up fear. What I adore most about what I now call a career has less to do with the actual images. –And most everything to do with how I make people feel about themselves and then the tangible way images hold the ability to always see it.
So, I know what you are thinking ‘Well, that’s great Cass–beautiful, really. But what does that have to do with ‘the price of tea in China’ let alone why I ever clicked on this damned blog post–being Glamorous.
–Ill get to that.
This past year was a year of ‘Phoenix-ing’ for me (my made-up word to imply ‘ rising from the ashes renewed to live through another cycle.’) After a royal shit show of a year (more on that here or here ) I am finally able to rise on up out of the ‘ash’ of year that ended up in flames and take a good hard look at where I am and where I want to go. –One small piece of that was really clarifying for the world (and myself) who I am and who I adore working with; and to more clearly reflect that in every. aspect. of. my. business. (and ideally-my life.)
To save this from becoming a novel (I will write one someday..so some of you should be worried…very worried. 🙂 I will just say after a year of a bit of a ‘sabbatical’, a little help from a business coach and a few good friends who have listened intently….
I am drawn to those who adore life. The adventurers. The seekers. The glamorous, fearless and fiery!
I firmly believe life is much too short for mediocre
It is our ‘job’ to embolden those around us
It is perfectly okay to be bossy (Especially if the ‘y’ is silent and the intention good)
That everyone has a superpower (or five)
And for those “glamorous, fearless and fiery'” folks who elect to work with me…my camera is one of the tools I use to make these moments of stellar beauty and confidence…real.
So how, out of all of the amazing adjectives in this world did I decide glamorous as the first word in my series of new ‘branding’ (#life) words?? (Look at that–finally got to the ever-loving-point!) and suited both me and those I adore working with?
More truth? I was stuck really –on an appropriate way to verbalize the beauty, (and I don’t mean external.) confidence and alluring mystery I see in those I work with–specifically the women that are drawn to me and what I do. Then I happened to land on this definition–one that I believe resonates with my ‘elegantly grabbing-life-by-the____ ‘ (its like a madlib…insert your own. Balls? Ovaries? ) approach. I most especially was drawn to the second-lesser-known definition of the word.