I have ummed and aahhed, pondered and poked at the big question this year: should I start my own business. What I decided was NO! Here's some of the why:
- I don't feel I know enough about my craft to charge people for it. Someday, undoubtably, I will. But not right now. And when I feel like I can count myself among the best and have consistent, awesome quality to offer then branching out on my own will be an option. Which leads me to...
- I don't want to add to the already flooding market of amateur photographers who think they're professional. (I don't mean to be rude but just because you have a digital camera and know the basics doesn't mean, in my humble opinion, that you are good enough to take awesome pictures consistently. This topic is a bit of a bone for me that I might gnaw at another day for you...!)
- I'm a bit lazy and all that work of starting a business, learning how to run a business, self promoting, learning my craft and actually taking photo's, editing photo's and preparing photo's for purchase seemed like a bit too much all at once for me when I like my husband, my friends and my holidays!
- I LIKE working with other people and for other people. It keeps me stimulated, challenged, excited, working hard and learning. And I can take holidays (!!!)
- I felt like working for myself would be missing a step in my education and training in the photography industry. Think how much I could learn from working under a professional compared to taking classes or figuring it out myself!
- I was a bit scared. And that's truth too. And that's ok.
- My dream job is to second shoot and edit - not be the first shooter! I like the laid back, less pressure, capture the details and different angles that the second shooter position entails. And I'm addicted to editing. I don't think you can be the second shooter in your own business...
Having discovered through my soul searching that I didn't really want to start my own business right now (despite already having a name for my business picked out!) I set myself two goals and told them to some friends who would hold me accountable.
The first was this: to create a portfolio of my photography by the end of term 3 so that I could complete my goal for term 4. The second was this: to approach a few of the stand out photographers in Albury about doing an internship/apprenticeship/assistant type thing with one of them.
I had a few photographers marked in my mind and bookmarked on my computer but there was one particular lady who would be my first port of call. I liked her style. I liked the way she wrote on her blog. I felt like she was some one who could teach me what I want to know. I was seriously hoping I wouldn't have to ask anyone else! She already had an assistant so I was prepared to say, "let me follow you around! You don't have to pay me and I promise not to get in the way. Just let me soak up your knowledge please!" I checked her blog once a week to see what she had been up to.
On Sunday the 6th of September I was working in the dorm. I had a quiet moment so I checked this lady's blog and discovered this post: office + wedding assistant needed.
Yes! Me! I wrote her an email telling her some of what I've just told you and saying I was very interested in the job. It's not a photography position but it's with a real photographer - bottom step in the ladder and all that.
She called me back and asked me to come in for a chat.
I went in to meet her on Wednesday. (side story - I had to completely redo my resume and I wanted it to printed nicely so I emailed it to the Minute Man on Tuesday night and asked for it to be ready at 10am on Wednesday. He emailed me back a few times to get some clarification on paper type and number of copies and then at 9:59:56 am on Wednesday he emailed to say it was ready! When I went to pick it up I was so nervous about my interview that I didn't think to take change with me. All I had was a $1. He said "no worries, don't worry about it. Take it with you now and pay for it another time when you're going past". Seriously! How awesome is that! he did the most incredible job on the printing, had it ready right on time, gave me an extra copy and let me walk out with only giving him $1!!! If you're in Albury and need printing - go see him. He's on Swift street.)
The interview went well. My resume looked awesome. We got along really well. And yet you just never know do you? Some other girl might've gone in there and been even cooler than me!
A week goes by. Yesterday I start to get a bit antsy thinking it's been a whole week since my interview.... I know she's busy but... So I called her. And left a message "Hi, just wondering how you were going thinking about the assistant position... I look forward to hearing from you (if it's goo news...)"
2 hours late she called me back.
And offered me the job. She offered me the job!!!
I took it, of course. So now I will be working as someone's Assistant! (names removed because I am not interested in getting in trouble - 30/6/2010) Oh yeah! I'm in the industry now people. Look out! I will be organising your files, holding your babies, changing the batteries, sweeping the floors, answering your calls, buying the mocha's, watching you have your photo taken, helping to build the business and soaking up every tiny bit of it!
I'm going in next Wednesday ( I think she's a Wednesday person!) to work out details. Hooray and happy day! I have a job! Stay tuned for all my Assistant Adventures.