Meet Emily Mason, a right-eyed Canon user who shoots both weddings and portraits. Emily often shoots by herself, but her husband Warren is a huge part of her business and assists when he can.
Describe the moment you decided it was time to pursue this as a career?
I’ve always loved photography. But one night I had a feeling, one of those feelings you just can’t get rid of and I knew that God was telling me to do it, to sart my own photography business. My family thought I was a little crazy, but I knew it was the right thing to do. I felt it in my heart. And from there it just took off.
What is one thing you’ve learned so far that has proven most valuable?
To put value on myslef as a photographer. Don’t devalue myslef no matter what, especially when pricing my packages.
What makes you different from everyone else?
Who is your one favorite up-and-coming photographer?
I don’t really have a favorite. I know several that are awesome! But Sara-anne Codle is a great photographer and such a sweet person.
One item you can’t live without?
My fuzzy blanket. I am so cold natured and my blanket is kind of like Ugg boots, warm and fuzzy.
Your best (favorite) bokeh image and why?
This one of my daughter with her blue sunglasses. This isn’t necessarily my favorite image of her, but I love the bokeh in this one.
I have 2. The Bible and Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.
Gone With The Wind. I love Miss Scarlett!
Where do you find inspiration?
Fashion magazines, other photographers, and just watching how people interact with eachother.
What do you think is the most valuable aspect of your business?
Me and the value I put on my clients.
Do you use a second shooter/assistant?
Yes, my husband second shoots with me at weddings.
How would you suggest that photographers wanting to second shoot/assist/shadow you or others go about getting the gig?
Just shoot me an email telling me about yourself, how long you’ve been shooting and why you want to assist/shadow me.
Are you a member of any organizations?
What did you have to do to actually take the leap?
Did you have any hoops to jump through? Yes a few. At the time I was a stay at home mom of a toddler. It was difficult to learn while taking care of her. I had to ask my family many times to keep her so that I could second shoot and learn form other photographers. Another hoop was finding the funds to purchase all the gear I needed to get started. But if you want something bad enough, you will find a way.
Do you have suggestions for others trying to make the transition?
Follow your heart and your dreams. Don’t let others tell you that you can’t do it. I think that when people told me I couldn’t or shouldn’t take the leap to start my business it made me want it even more!
What is the biggest or most creative thing you do/have done to draw new clients?
Treating my clients like royalty so that they will tell others about me. Most of my work has come from word of mouth. Facebook has actaully done wonders for my business too. As soon as I am done editing a shoot, I post to my blog and my FB page. You’d be surprised at how much feedback I get.
What’s your idea of the perfect photographer networking “date”?
Hanging out at Starbucks just chatting and sharing tips.
Anything else you would like to share?
Be yourself! In the beginning I made the crucial mistake of trying to be like other photographers so much that I didn’t even know who I was as an artist. It may take a while, but you have to find your own style and branding that reflects who you are.