Well, I feel like this blog should have happened 2 years ago; when most people move into their first studio, they make a huge post about it and take tons of photos of every single detail. My Mom urged me to take photos to document this space and since I like doing things out of order, here it is!
It was never some perfectly designed, Style Me Pretty worthy studio space, but it was my own and I worked hard to make it happen. Over the years I’ve collected things, added more photos and received awesome gifts from friends and clients to add to my space.
However, this post is about more than what desk I bought and what color swatches I used and how to make a burlap comment board (hint: go to Homegoods).
The 2 Year Cycle
I feel like most of my adult life has been in 2 year clumps. My first 2 years out of college I worked in Marketing in DC. I quit that, suffered a few months as a “freelancer” then worked retail as I dug in and built my business. I worked for Apple for about 2 years. Two years ago I moved into this studio space, very soon after I quit a safety net retail job and became fully self employed. I remember it was scary and exciting. There was lots of fear and self doubt; that I wouldn’t book clients, I wouldn’t be able to pay my rent and I’d be kicked out in a few months. I had just took the leap to go full time 2 months prior and now I was taking on a studio space?! Part of me felt crazy, but there was a big part of me that felt completely right.
Quitting your job and going full time is a big leap for anyone to take. I didn’t have all the answers but I knew in my heart that I was at a point that I needed to take my business to the next level. Adding on the studio was another challenge but it was meant to be.
I had a great support system of family and friends who supported me to take this step. Up to this point, moving into my first studio space was the best decision I’ve made in my business. I hope to update this in another 2 years and say that moving to a new city was the best decision I’ve made for my business. Time, hard work and persistence will only tell!
My business has grown so much since moving into the studio. I learned and changed and it’s forced me to become a better business owner. There were lots of ups and downs; but that’s business. Shit happens and you deal with it.
Being self employed is awesome but it also takes a lot of discipline. While I don’t have to subscribe to a typical 9-5 lifestyle, I do need to work on my business every day. I made it a point to go to my studio every day of the traditional work week. The ritual of going to the studio and working in my own space filled me with a huge sense of pride and accomplishment. This was something that always seemed like such a distant dream but somehow in November of 2013 I made it real! I had so much fun picking out furniture, ordering huge canvas displays and inviting people to come meet me in my new space. I love the studio; it will always have a special place in my heart because it was the first space that my business could call home. I’ve worked hard for that!
There have been days where I’ve felt so defeated that I laid on my office floor and looked at the ceiling thinking I should just quit photography and get a “real” job. Those days suck… but the important part is to get up and keep pushing forward through the nasty days. It helped that I had a space that I could post the awesome letters and cards that my clients and friends would send me over the years. (hint: sending me cards with cuss words or “rad” on them makes my day!)
The past two years have been so amazing. While I’m really sad to leave this space behind, I know that I’m moving on to take my business to new heights.
I’ve always wanted to live in NYC, since my first visit at 16, I was hooked on the city life. At the beginning of the year I gave myself a goal to move to NYC by the end of 2015. In July I took a few weeks to stay in the city to help me make my decision about truly moving. When I came home, I realized that I needed to take a new leap.
This week I moved out of the studio, I had my last shoot here on Monday morning and by the afternoon I was dusting off my shelves and throwing my last few bags of garbage in the dumpster. I’ve been living in NYC for about a month now. It’s been an insane experience already. I’ve been rejected and ignored, I’ve had great meetings and shoots, I’ve reconnected with old friends and I’ve made amazing new friends. I feel like I’m at a place where I will push myself to be better all around.
Being in NYC, I no longer have a place I can go to work (I’m writing this from Bread & Butter – thanks to WorkFrom.co
). It’s important for me to get out of my apartment and be around people. People make me happy! Big changes have happened already with my move to New York City
and I’m excited for the new adventures and experiences that are ahead!
I don’t know what tomorrow will bring, I just know that if I’m able to be around awesome people and create things, then I’ll be happy!
Thank you for the good memories and for being my first, 1801!