Grand Rapids Boudoir Photography | …leap of faith

You know that feeling? The one so deep in your very core that every fiber of your body feels completely unnerved, the one that feeds every insecurity and deep seeded fear of failure? I feel it. Today was a huge milestone in my business and a giant leap of faith. It was a choice that was carefully considered and still gives me incredible anxiety. Over the last six years as a creative professional my primary focus was as a wedding photographer. I have had the opportunity to work with some of the most amazing couples over the years, and even made new friends in the process. That being said, I think that the time has come for change. It was not without some tears and momentary indecision that I was able to finally settle into this new role/business venture, I have made the decision to specialize in beauty & boudoir photography.

Boudoir photography was never intended to be more than a service I offered my wedding clients (brides) as a unique and sexy groom gift. The last two years as been a time of tested strength and endurance, and experiencing two difficult wedding seasons I began to feel it was time to “close up shop.”  I felt so utterly defeated and depressed, I made for poor company most days. J tried to provided love, support and encouragement to lift my spirits but it only helped in short doses. It was not until I began looking over my yearly numbers that I realized that although my wedding bookings had decreased dramatically compared to previous seasons that I was gaining a steady stream of inquiries and booked boudoir clients. For so long I had struggled in offering this service to clients, concerned that it inappropriate and conflicted with some of my conservative beliefs. I can’t even count the number of times I would tell friends or family I had settled to stop offering boudoir photography services to clients—and each time I did—an inquiry would pop up in my email inbox.

I honestly began to feel that maybe this IS what I am meant to do! I love capturing women’s portraiture, it is something I am so connected to and passionate for. I decided that I needed to take this leap and have faith that God will provide. So today I signed a lease on my very own loft, a place my clients can come and relax be pampered and be photographed beautifully!!!!

I have had a lot of questions but a couple questions that seem to be getting asked often:

Will you still offer lifestyle portrait sessions and weddings?? ABSOLUTELY!! I will be offering just FIVE-SIX wedding bookings per year, my goal is to take no more than 1 commission per month. And of course I am happy to care for my regular portrait clientele and anyone they refer my way, it means so much to me that I am small part of their lives and watching them grow.  Beauty & Boudoir will however be MY BABY & my primary focus.

Why this change? Why not push harder to book more weddings? The answer to this one is so much deeper than just “not getting enough to fill my season—thus not producing enough income in a year!!”

A few reasons include:

1. My husband is my partner, he is my second shooter/assistant and HUGE support & also happens to be back in college 🙂 I am so proud of him—beyond words!! This year J had to take the summer semester off to work weddings with me and that sets him back on his goals. I can’t take that time away from him for my business anymore.

2. I simply want to spend more time on the weekends with my children/husband doing family things. When I work a wedding my hours are usually somewhere between 11am-11pm at night verses a Saturday Boudoir Marathon which might last from 9am-3pm in the afternoon. I am able to be home for dinner and tuck my children in at night 🙂 and it is something I love doing and loathe missing.

3. My children are active on dance team among other activities and wedding photography is a huge conflict on this…I have missed a small number of important family events and sadly a couple of my own children’s events because I had a booked wedding that conflicted.

 

L~ F~: