January: New Year, New Adventures

Business Update: Off to a Good Start

I’ve officially launched my LLC photography business in a new and intentional way by solely focusing on wall art, note cards and other photo-related gifts. I’ve cut most of the safety cords of my predictable income sources with the exception of my extremely part-time bookkeeping job. I’ve seen the hard work I’ve been putting in this past month or so pay off already with increased Etsy sales surpassing in one month what I did in all of last year. This week, after trying out several other website platforms over the past month, I finally settled on the one I want to use to showcase my photographs. What I like most about this one I settled on is how easy it was to set up and maintain as well as the fact that it does all the fulfillment of orders for me, an important feature for me while I travel on new photography adventures. Also new to my business is my Fine Print America shop which I set up this past month so admirers of my work can get, in addition to wall art, a variety of photo gifts including throw pillows, shower curtains, tote bags, notebooks, and so much more. In the coming weeks, I’ll focus my energy on putting all the research I’ve done to good use by creating a marketing plan that can easily be executed throughout the year. I’m excited to share, in addition to my photography business, that I’ve gotten some new clients through my consulting business as well and that I have been enjoying creating websites, Etsy shops, and marketing plans for other small business owners. It feels wonderful to finally be doing what I love and on my own terms.

Traveling: Michigan, Here We Come!

With the COVID vaccine rolling out, people are beginning to travel again so I finally signed up for a housesitting matching service and already booked my first job for Cole and myself in Michigan in just 2-weeks. During my 3-week stay in Pinckney, Michigan, in addition to enjoying the company of another dog, cat, two gerbils, and two guinea pigs, Cole and I will get to explore the Lake Michigan, Lake Huron and Lake Erie coastlines as well as other gems throughout the area. Having only been to the Detroit Airport for a layover many moons ago, I’m excited to finally check this state off my bucket list and of course capture some beautiful new images to share with all of you.  

Minimalism: A Return to Old Hobbies

One of the things I feared when making photography my business was that I was going to kill the joy that doing it as a hobby brought me. So far, I’m happy to report, that has not been the case. I still love photography as well as the business of photography, albeit the second is harder than the first. When I’m not working on one of my business projects or planning for my upcoming trip, I’m making time to finally enjoy some old hobbies that I somehow talked myself out of years ago when my schedule was overburdened with too many things that did not bring me joy. I recently came across a video that reminds us that we don’t need to be good at something for it to be a valuable use of our time. With that in mind, I’m consciously working on eradicating that way of thinking and have started to teach myself piano again as well as drawing and painting. Pinterest has been a valuable source of inspiration and looking through all the images there to get ideas has been a joy in and of itself. 

Photography: Winter in Wisconsin

With all the snow, winter in Wisconsin can be a beautiful place, although Cole and I seem to enjoy it more from the indoors as neither one of us are huge fans of the cold. Despite the frigid days, Cole and I did manage to get out for a drive this past month to see what we could find. There is a tree in a field by one of the country roads not too far from our home that has always caught my eye but I haven’t ever stopped to get any photos. I decided to finally change that and while I was at it, I tried out my new polarizer filter. Despite the warm-for-January temperature and sunny day, my hands could only bear the icy wind for so long. Here is what I managed to capture in that quick, roadside moment. 

“Snow was falling, so much like stars filling the dark trees that one could easily imagine its reason for being was nothing more than prettiness.”

Mary Oliver

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