It's so flattering to get messages through Facebook and email from photographers who are starting to follow their passion for photography. Often they ask if I can sit with them and answer questions or tell them a little about how I got started. I take many coffee dates and meet ups throughout the year for inquiries like this and I really enjoy each one.
As I head out for coffee dates like this I remember what it was like in the very beginning for me. Back then, I had such a desire to talk with someone who had been in the business for years and to ask them the burning questions about their business experience. I remember like it was yesterday personally emailing 20 photographers in the Boston area (where I lived at the time) to ask if they would meet with me. Only one person answered! That was Andrea Winchebaugh. She is now my friend and she is the person I hired to photograph my kids when they were first born. I will never forget her kindness.
I also had a mentor once I lived in the Berkshires. It was Kevin Sprague who took the time to shoot with me and to answer my emails about running the business. He guided me and helped me feel more confident about doing business in this area. I will always be appreciative.
I realized that some people need more than a few minutes spent for a coffee date. They need dedicated time to answer their personal list of business questions, time to mull over ideas and assistance in creating action items. For that reason, I have begun to offer mentoring/coaching sessions for other photographers and small business owners.
As an education minor in college and a corporate trainer for years and years, it's a natural fit to teach. I also love to learn from others! Each mentoring session is a 2 hour session and includes a mini-headshot appointment. My hope is that these headshot sessions provide great images for their marketing of their own business.
This past week, I met with Kaitlyn Pierce who is a talented and a smart photographer. She's done the research and knows what it takes to run a business. Her photography specializes in maternity, newborns and young families. Find her at Autumn Owl Photography
I am so excited about the great foundation Kaitlyn is building for her business and what she is growing. She brought so many great questions to our session. We talked non-stop about her business over Peligrino in fancy glasses and the snacks I brought for us. We created ten action items she is immediately going to attend to. Cheers to her success!
Here's my favorite shot from our session, take note of this lovely face! I expect big things from her!