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De-Lurk Day Is Here!

I have been looking forward to this day ALL YEAR.

Ever since the last de-lurk day, in fact.  Don’t know what de-lurk day is?  I’ll explain.

Last weekend, I attended my college reunion.  And I got to ooh and aaah and celebrate over what everyone has been up to.  Marvel at where live has taken them.  And what a spread it was – jobs with CNN Turkey to NYC law firms to NGOs in Nigeria.  (That’s a lot of acronymns.)

It was like a life buffet – seeing all the different ways people chose to make a living and a life for themselves.

Today is like our very own De-Lurk Reunion.

Today, instead of me expounding upon a point of psychology, I get to hear from YOU.

Today, everyone who reads this blog and never comments gets to come out of lurking and wave hello in the comments.  And we all get to ooh and aah and celebrate over what everyone is up to.

Because, they say 80 percent of life and success is showing up.  On the Internet, commenting is your way of “showing up.”

And awesome things happen when you comment.  Over the past year, I’ve met many P4P readers in person.  We’ve chatted.  We’ve laughed.  We’ve brunched.  We’ve exchanged snail mail.  And it all started because they introduced themselves in the comments.


Leave me a comment, and tell me:

1) Your name and whereabouts you’re located.

2) Your photography details (what do you shoot?  do you have a business?  do you want to have a business?).

3) The biggest goal you’re working toward right now.  Can be anything.

Also?  Head over to the De-Lurk thread on Facebook and leave me your Facebook page so I can “Like” it.  I enjoy keeping up with everyone.

(Are you already a non-lurker?  Bless you.  You can still participate – give us an update!  And encourage your lurking friends to do the same.)

Guys, please do this.

It takes less than thirty-nine seconds to type a little introduction.  And the more I know about the people reading this blog, the more useful it becomes to you.

I’ve done a handful of surveys this past year, which were super helpful, but they were also anonymous.  This time, I get to see your shining faces and learn more about you.

Hit me up in the comments.  (If you’re reading this in your inbox, click here and I’ll whisk you over to the blog.)

Talk soon!



P.S.  By the way – there are only four spots left for Website Reviews in June.  They’re going fast!

What’s a Website Review?  A fabulous 90-minute chunk of my laser-focused attention helping you prune your website, live, one-on-one, via Skype.  Written summary with an action map to follow.  Guaranteed to align your website more closely with the dreams + needs of your ideal clients.  Gasps of inspiration and forehead-slapping “why didn’t I think of that?” moments included.  $299.  Email to grab a spot.

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  1. Cindy on June 5, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    My name is Cindy Cavanagh. I shoot with a Nikon, and I love children’s portrait photography. I am Australian but currently live in Brazil. happy to be de-lurking!

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      Hey Cindy! My husband lived in Brazil for 2 years, hoping to visit sometime in the next few years. Thanks for de-lurking!!

  2. Zoe on June 5, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    I am Zoe – and live in Switzerland

    I have a business, mainly specialising in portraits and have been going a few years

    my biggest challenge – to nail lighting for commercial shots!

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      I LOVE SWITZERLAND. Actually hoping to BE there later this year! Thumbs up for commercial lighting…you can do it!

  3. Carey Anne on June 5, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    Carey Anne Photography in Pearland, Texas
    Specializing in families, seniors, Beloved and occasional wedding
    Biggest goal: transforming my business into something more fun, authentic and sustainable

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:34 pm

      You know I love me some Carey Anne photography…. 🙂 You are wonderful.

  4. Amaris Hames on June 5, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Wait, what were the questions? Haha.

    Hang on…
    Aha! Ok, we’re back on track.
    Hi! I’m Amaris and my home base is Raleigh, NC, though I’m on the road/plane/boat about fifty percent of the year. This year, you’ll find me in Minnesota, Chicago, Nashville, Baltimore/DC, London, Prague, and Italy! True story.

    I love to wander. And was able to go full-time with my business, Amaris Photography, to both help satisfy that love while capturing portraits of my second love–people. It’s true. I have a sincere addiction to their lives and stories and figuring out how to make them laugh ’til they cry. 🙂

    It’s got hard days, for sure, but the end result and happy clients makes the whole thing worth it.

    Thank you for everything you do through this site – it’s so so helpful and really helps me to feel less alone in this thang.

    Yay for de-lurking! 🙂

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:42 pm

      Um yeah, when it comes to the internet, I basically have the attention span of a goldfish, so your comment cracked me up.

      GAH, your wanderings sound amazing, Amaris! I love to wander, too! And it’s a pleasure to hear that I’ve helped anyone feel less alone…we’re all in this together as far as I’m concerned. Thanks for de-lurking! I hope to see you again!

  5. Pam on June 5, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Hi! My name is Pam and I am from Minnesota. My focus in photography is on documentary., everyday life moments. My goal is to inspire gratitude for the small everyday moments through photography, and hopefully someday publish a book!

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:41 pm

      BOOK PUBLISHING AND INSPIRING GRATITUDE!! How cool! You and I are of the same heart, Pam. <3

  6. Chrissey on June 5, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    I’m Chrissey. I’m a Native Texan currently living south of Seattle, Washington. I own Creations by Chrissey Photography and have been doing kids & family portraits for about two years now. I love it!!

    My biggest goal at the moment is to just keep the momentum with my business going. Nurture it and watch it grow.

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:40 pm

      Thanks for de-lurking, Chrissey! Pleasure to meet you!

  7. Michelle on June 5, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    Hello there! De-lurking from Harbor Springs, Michigan. (That’s in the Northern part of the lower peninsula of Michigan.) Mainly I shoot family portraits, children, newborns. Biggest goal? Finding the right clients. 🙂

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:39 pm

      Ahoy there, Michelle in Michigan!! 🙂

  8. Topher on June 5, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    Hey Jenika, we sort of already met when I shared my new website with you after I devoured Irresistible Website. Your blog is amazing. In fact, I’m part of a weekly referral group and I’m in charge of education day and I’ve totally used concepts in your blog to teach some lessons in business. It’s been so fun sharing some of the psychology behind why we do what we do. So again, thank you for everything! You rock. – Topher

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:39 pm

      no, YOU rock. 😉 Thanks Topher! I love seeing you around here.

  9. Matthew Kauffmann on June 5, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    MDKauffmann Photography; Lebanon, IL

    I currently shoot a little bit of everything; if I had my druthers, I’d shoot only weddings & commercial stuff. I’ve been in the industry for 13 years, have had a formally registered business for 5. I support my family as a paramedic until photography can afford to.

    My biggest short term/”little” goal is passing the CPP test next week, and then the image review. Long term I’ll get my M.Photog. Biggest “big” goal is to get the business to be family supporting.

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:38 pm

      My fingers are all crossed for you on your exam, Matthew. Not that you’ll need it!!

  10. terri on June 5, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    I commented before, Jenika, but I’ll introduce myself again! I’m Terri Hughes of Simply Human Pictures in Norfolk, VA. I photograph the love and connection of little people and their big people. My goal I’m currently working on is saving money to hire someone to paint the outside of my almost 100 year old home!

  11. Andrea Nelson on June 5, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    I’m located in Rochester, MN but plan on moving back home to Columbus, OH this summer. (as soon as my husband gets a job). I shoot canon and newborns, children, families and a few seniors. I have a business. I’ve been in business for about 2 yrs. My biggest goal is building my photography business. I purchased your website make-over thingy and re-did my website and I love it but its not bringing in the business I thought it would. I’ve restructured my pricing and it doesn’t seem to be working. Sorry if this is too much info!

  12. Janet on June 5, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    Hi there!! I’m Janet, I’ve ha my own photography business for about 4 years. I specialize in children, families, and weddings. I also work full time in the human services field and have a family, so balancing it all is my current challenge. I am based out of Pennsylvania but originally from Brazil and Portugal 🙂 looking forward to interacting more with all of you

  13. Susana Vazquez-Halfhill on June 5, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    Hi everyone!!! I am currently living/photographing in Laredo,TX… my main focus is Wedding/Bridal/Boudior, but I also do Engagements & Families. My goals for this year are to continue working towards mastery, shoot more of what I love, get published with more frequency, & grow the numbers in my business. My BIGGEST GOAL at the moment is to book 25 weddings, 50 Boudior shoots, & 50 other individual shoots within the next 12 months.

  14. Julie Moses on June 5, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    Hi, my name is Julie. I live in the Palm Springs, CA area. I have a business and am currently doing a bit of everything. I would like to specialize in newborn, children, and senior photography though. I also am interested in expanding to glamour for ladies in their late 40’s to early 60’s. These are the ladies who generally hate what they look like in pictures which is a shame! My biggest challenge is on confidence and general business acumen. I am also a homeschool mom of a 7th grader and a 3 year old. Life is super busy and challenging on it’s own most days.

  15. Melissa on June 5, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    Hi Jenika! I’m Melissa from a little town outside of Toronto, Ontario. I primarily photograph weddings, but am slowly (very slowly) starting a separate kids’ photography business (my biggest goal/challenge currently).

  16. Susana Vazquez-Halfhill on June 5, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    Hi everyone!!! I am currently living/photographing in Laredo,TX… my main focus is Wedding/Bridal/Boudior, but I also do Engagements & Families. My goals for this year are to continue working towards mastery, shoot more of what I love, get published with more frequency, & grow the numbers in my business. My BIGGEST GOAL at the moment is to book 25 weddings, 50 Boudior shoots, & 50 other individual shoots within the next 12 months.

  17. Jennifer on June 5, 2013 at 4:47 pm

    Hello Jenika,
    I’m a guilty lurker based in Derby UK. Families and kids are my thing.
    Love your blog 🙂
    Jennifer x

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:48 pm

      Thanks for de-lurking, Jennifer! Pleasure to meet you! I heart my UK readers <3 Hope to see you again!

  18. Tyler Rippel on June 5, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    Tyler Rippel – I live in NE Ohio.
    I just started my photography business this year and booked 4 of my own weddings in just a few months. Love shooting people, love shooting wide open fast primes. My goal is to book 8 or more weddings for 2014.

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:49 pm

      you rock those bookings, Tyler! thanks for de-lurking!

  19. Mikaela on June 5, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    Hi! I’m Mikaela Morgan. I specialise in newborn babies, bumps and Boudoir!

    Was a wedding photographer for 8 years. Ditched the weddings and Switched to studio 18 months ago and loving it!

    I am a full time self employed photographer.

    My biggest goal is to increase my income by getting more of the right type of clients who I will enjoy working with… and I need to get better at marketing! I bought ‘irresistible websites’ so lots of work to do lol!

    Really pleased I came across your blog!

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 4:51 pm

      Hello Mikaela – what a pleasure to meet you. So happy you’ve found what you love to shoot and are pursuing it, full-force! You go get those clients, lady! 🙂

    • Mikaela on June 5, 2013 at 4:54 pm

      Oh forgot to say… I live in England! This took me much longer than 39 seconds as I am typing on iPhone enjoying some rare sun in my garden 🙂

      • Jenika on June 6, 2013 at 2:51 pm

        Oh ok, sorry for the false advertising! 😉 Enjoy the sun!!!

  20. Amy Monroy on June 5, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    Hi there! I’ve been a lurker for a long time! I bought From Portfolio to Search Engine earlier this year and LOVE LOVE LOVE it (I’m still working on finishing it up – apparently writing like that takes some serious focus! 😉 )!!! I am in Provo, Utah and love Birth and Newborn Photography (and do a little of everything else when I have to). I think my biggest goal right now is to get my husband through his last year of school AND move over to exclusively shooting birth stories with an occasional newborn and NOTHING else except my family. 🙂

  21. Caitlyn Hofmaster on June 5, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    Hello! My name is Caitlyn and I am located in Iowa…sadly, I live amidst corn fields 😉

    I love shooting kids/newborns & humanitarian/adoption work. I shoot a little bit of everything though.

    My biggest goal is to get my business (Pink Flower Photography) off the ground and really being more consistent. I just want to book more. I am in the middle of a “dry spell” and it sucks! HAHA I also am trying to get out there and get really involved in photographing the adoption community.

  22. Michelle on June 5, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Hi there! I was just introduced to your site a few weeks ago by a colleague of my husbands. I live in a little town outside of Philadelphia and I’ve been photographing “professionally” for a little over a year. My focus is family and newborns, although I would love to build my senior clientele. Since I’m new to the business my goal is to actually make a profit 🙂 I’ve been doing a lot of portfolio building and am having a hard time transitioning to paying clients. Thanks so much for your insight and tips – I really appreciate it!

  23. Lisa Scott on June 5, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Hi I’m Lisa Scott and I live in Northern Virginia. Leesburg, VA to be exact. I photograph families, children and couples using the Beloved Technique which I love.

    My current goal is reaching out to bloggers to offer a guest post for their blogs but writing is my nemesis so I keep finding other things to cross off on my to do list instead but it is my biggest goal at the moment.

  24. Emilia on June 5, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    Hi there!

    My name is Emilia Venegas and I was born and live in Portoviejo, Ecuador, in South America. I graduated as an Engineer in Graphic Design last year. I started my photography business 2 years ago, just because someone was so excited about my photography that was actually willing to pay me for them. I loved that and never look back. I don’t think I’ve specialized on anything yet, but certainly run away from events, love shooting couples, families, pregnancies, kids and girls (kinda seniors style but for every age). Been trying weddings to see if that’s something I would like to do, so far they are to stressful for me, but I’m still willing to do them.

    My biggest goal this year splits in two: getting more clients (wich has been working pretty well so far) and trying to save money for a camera upgrade (I suck terribly at saving money can you write something on that subject, I will be forever grateful) so far I won’t be able to pay for a cheap lens… help!

    I discovered your blog this year and I love it! Lots of aha moments.

    Well, I have officially de-lurked. Un abrazo desde Ecuador (Means a hug from Ecuador 🙂 )

  25. Kristi on June 5, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    I’ve commented before but not in a long while… 🙂

    I’m Kristi from Up & Away Photography and I’m located right outside of Atlanta, GA.

    I shoot kids and families — well, I photograph them. 😉

    My biggest goal right now is trying to advertise without spending a ton. I know word of mouth is key and I do get referrals, but not enough to skip the advertising!

  26. Els on June 5, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    I am from the Netherlands and as long as I can remember I have loved shooting ‘every day moments / dalily life’ of my family and things around me. This is also the way I like to photograph others.
    I am in between ‘trying to start a business’; ‘not doing it for business’. But your P4P usually keeps me on the rails.

  27. Diane on June 5, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    My name is Diane and I’m from the OKC area. I have a photography business and love wedding and portrait photograpy. I’ve been trying to really step up my skills and get out of my comfort zone and really create what I see in my visions on top of my portrait business. It’s already started opening some doors! Yay for non lurkers now! Thank you for all the amazing things on your site. I love it!

  28. Megan Elrick on June 5, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    I have a Wedding and Family portrait photography business in Vancouver, BC.
    I went through a rough time in the business about a year ago, and reading blogs like yours taught me I wasn’t alone, and that I could keep calm and carry on!
    Right now I’m working towards bringing on my second photographer as a business partner and expand the business from there.

  29. Candace on June 5, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    Hello Jenika!
    I’ve been following your blog from the start, and it helped me so much more than I can express. I am a newborn and family photographer in Swift Current, Sask. CANADA and my biggest challenge is client relations (conflicts, demands, etc.). I don’t run into many problems, but knowing how to handle them is where I need the most work!

  30. Kate Anderson on June 5, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    Can I delurk if I’m not a pro photographer?!

    I’m Kate Anderson, I design albums in Minnesota for local and international photographers. I love Jenika’s posts because I sometimes point some of my clients here to help them answer their questions. And I’ve gotten some great ideas and insight for my own business too here. I am learning photography, but intend to only get into as a hobby, shooting nature and landscapes and stuff.

    My biggest goal right now is to grow the business enough to replace my modest minimum wage income so I can work from home and not drive a long distance every night. Last year I cleared my first goal of pulling in $10k, so I finished out the year breaking even after spending a boatload for a website and brand. That made me happy, and my husband too! With some hard work and a little luck, this time next year I’ll be full time at home!

  31. NATHANIEL BOSTIC on June 5, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    Hey there Jenika, my name is Nathaniel and am the owner of Bosstography LLC in Bradenton, Fl. We are “Nikon Folk” and were all about family. So we cover anything and everything that deals with important family moments (weddings, maternity/infants, youth sports, and family portraits). We have been in business less than a year. Our current focus is to work on marketing and rework our pricing so we can actually make money and stop working for peanuts.

    Been lurking for about a month now and am happy to finally De-Lurk.

  32. Connie Fintel on June 5, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    50 year old wife and mother of 5. Left my careers of the past about 3 years ago to focus on my photography obsession. Worked in graphics since college and spent a brief 5 years in health care in maternity.
    Have a growing photography business where I have begun to specialize in Seniors and families. Work both on location and studio.

  33. Alyssa Campbell on June 5, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    Facebook Page:

    Hi Jenika!

    I’m not exactly a lurker but LOVE your blog as a psychology major. I love all of you stuff and still need to really implement your $0 Marketing and have done some work with your Irresistable Website but need to really figure out my target client. I am a Phoenix AZ photographer specializing in seniors, weddings (recent this year) and underwater portraits. I have a business- it is “official” this year but I have been doing it unofficially for 3 years or so. My biggest goal right now is building my business to possibly allow me to work full time. I’m still deciding if that’s what I want because I just graduated from Arizona State in December. More concretely, I would like to develop a senior rep system that works, and book 5 weddings this year. So far, I am at 3, but I have no more inquires so I hope I can reach that goal this year! I have been second shooting a lot for a local wedding photographer for the past year but I am ready to start taking on my own weddings. Thanks for doing what you do!

  34. Jennifer on June 5, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    Well Howdy,
    I am Jennifer from the great state of Texas!! I try not to lurk, and have commented a few times but you know I love ya gal.

    I am a Canon/Prime lens girl who would love to shoot only equine, or people and their equine friends. My business is coming along okay, but I am in no rush as I still have three kiddos at home who need their mom!

    One goal of mine is to get more knowledgeable on horse breeds and what makes each one shine so I can shoot them with an eye that knows. In the meantime, I will shoot the ones that are available to me, and stretch and grow along the way.

    Thank you so much for filling this unique niche in my photography life, it is needed and super cool.
    JD Waterhouse Photography

  35. Jade on June 5, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    Hiya, I’m jade from Chico, ca. I love to photograph seniors, as well as any other creative fashion-inspired portraits. My huge goal right now is to survive my wedding day! But also to get all my ducks in a row to make my business more full time than part time.

  36. Megan on June 5, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    My name is Megan and I live in Wisconsin. I like photographing people mainly (families, couples, seniors, etc). I do not have an official business but once I am done with college I may want to pursue it more seriously. I am following this blog as part of a school project in which I need to follow blogs in a field I am interested in. My biggest goal is to finish my degree (I am in my 20s and working full time and pursuing my bachelors).

  37. Deanna on June 5, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    My name is Deanna and I live in Italy. I am moving along the path from hobbyist to professional photographer, so I am taking it all in!

  38. Lyndsay Doyle on June 5, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Hi! I’m Lyndsay and I live in Nova Scotia, Canada. I’ve had my photography business since 2009 and I mainly shoot families and small weddings.

    My goal for this year is to FINALLY take control of the “business” side of my business, organize my finances and develop a marketing plan 🙂

  39. Andrea Lythgoe on June 5, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    1) Your name and whereabouts you’re located. I’m Andrea Lythgoe, and I live in Sandy, UT – a suburb of Salt Lake City

    2) Your photography details (what do you shoot? do you have a business? do you want to have a business?). I shoot Nikon and have a business as a doula, childbirth educator, and photographer. I shoot only maternity, birth and newborn.

    3) The biggest goal you’re working toward right now. Can be anything. Finding time to write. I have been working on a few writing projects for a couple of years now and its going sooooo slow. I need to just check into a hotel for a week or something.

  40. Hannah on June 5, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    I really enjoy your blog and wanted to say hello! I am a portrait and wedding photographer in South Louisiana.

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 6:17 pm

      Hello Hannah! Thanks for saying hello!

      I went to NOLA two summers ago and loved it…..mostly just walking around with my camera. Wish I’d gotten outside of the city more, what a beautiful part of the country.

  41. Emily on June 5, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    I’m a terrible lurker… I sat and read everyone’s comments, then clicked off, back to lurk some more. But the guilt got me, and I’m de-lurking.

    I’m emily. I am a full-time in-house commercial photographer, and have run my own business since 2007. Last year, I decided to stop doing everything, and am focusing on just glamour. I’m still doing the commercial stuff until I can completely transition, and I am trying to figure out how to meld my love of beautiful design, pretty photography, and the limit of 24-hour days to actually do everything on my to-do list.

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 6:20 pm

      We’re a guilt-free zone here, Emily, but I’m SO GLAD that you de-lurked!! We’re so glad you’re here!

      This is fascinating to me….also, I wish I could campaign for 30-hour days. 🙂 What is up with the 24 thing? Hehe. I wish you all the light and excitement and success in the world with your glamour business! I would imagine that being able to tell your glamour customers that you were a commercial photographer and can make them look super great would help, no?

  42. Lindsay on June 5, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    Hi Jenika!

    My name is Lindsay and I live in Raleigh, NC. I am in the process of transitioning from shooting EVERYTHING to just shooting lifestyle newborn and family sessions. The biggest goal I’m working on is preparing for my first baby. Ummm… no nursery yet and she’s due in about 6 weeks. Eeek!

    My second biggest goal is trying to figure out how to get my clients to talk about me the right way. I feel like when I say I’m a photographer, people have a pre-conceived notion of what that entails. I want to use and give them the right words to convey my brand when talking to potential clients and when they speak to their friends.

    Thank you for all that you do. I love reading your insights and thoughts on this blog 🙂

  43. stefanie on June 5, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    De-Lurking here:)

    1) I’m Stefanie Morris; living in Rock Hill, SC.

    2) I shoot weddings & portraits.

    3) Right now I am working to transition my business to Charleston, SC:) HUGE step. Just walkin’ by faith.

    I totally love your blog<3

  44. Amy Sayre on June 5, 2013 at 6:21 pm

    Hello Jenika and fellow de-lurkers! My name is Amy and I’m a child and family portrait photographer located in Chicago. I have my own business that currently is run in my spare time. My goal is to get my spare time back and start doing photography full time in place of my current 9 to 5.

  45. Cathy on June 5, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    Hi! I’m Cathy and I live in Galena, IL (northwest corner-right by WI and IA). My boyfriend and I photograph mostly weddings and high school seniors. The biggest challenge we’re going through? We’ve been in our new town for exactly one year and a week and are headed into the craziness of our first full wedding season in this new place. We are excited, nervous, happy, scared-all of it together! We know that our success in this season will make or break us in the area and make or break the idea that we could both do this full-time with no other income (both really want to be solely photographers, but have small part-time jobs right now). So yeah-biggest challenge right now is to ROCK OUT this season 🙂 Thank you for always posting amazing advice. I was a psych minor in college and LOVE all the things you talk about here 🙂

  46. Dale Lempa on June 5, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    1) Dale and Jill Lempa, currently living in Cary, NC (just outside of Raleigh).
    2) We shoot mostly engagements and weddings, although we also do individual and family portraits, and events.
    3) Our biggest goal right now is marketing to reach more clients.
    Thank you, we really appreciate your blog for helpful insights. I have already referenced it several times in discussions.

  47. Kerry H on June 5, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    Hi there! Love reading your blog. 🙂

    I am located in Fairfield Coubty, Connecticut which is the suburbs if NYC.

    I am a family, natural light, lifestyle photographer. I shoot children as well but I love nothing more than capturing the entire family in all the craziness that comes with it.

    We just moved here from LA thus month. Therefore, my biggest challenge is getting my name out and finding new clients.

  48. Ashley Sheppard on June 5, 2013 at 6:46 pm

    Hi! I’m Ashley, I’m located in the sunny state of Florida (the north part) I’m on a photography journey, I’ve had cameras for most of my life and have just recently made the official jump to manual shooting. I felt like I could no longer be a fraud. I *Love* taking photos of things that people drive by a thousand times and never notice. I want to notice the world around me, not just exist in it.
    My biggest goal right now is to believe in myself and my ability. I struggle with insecurity and with interacting with strangers. This is a BIG hurdle for me to get over if I want to start my own photography business.

  49. Laura Shaleen on June 5, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    Laura Shaleen – located in Lindstrom, MN

    Last year I started a business (and by that I mean I got “legit and legal”) and started expanding a portfolio. Currently I am photographing maternity, babies (under 1 year), high school seniors, engagement sessions, pets, and dipping my toes in weddings.

    The biggest goal I’m working towards right now is (and this might sound silly) narrowing down my categories. I heard somewhere (and honestly can not remember where, but it’s stuck with me) “don’t try to do everything, be known for something”. I really want to be known for “something” and not another photographer who “shoots anything”. I’ve been taking this year to really listen to my heart and find my niche.

    Oh and making a better website because mine is admittedly not the greatest and could be greatly improved upon.

    P.S. delurking is kind of intimidating! So used to being behind the lens and computer screen it’s nerve wracking to put myself out there!

  50. Whitney on June 5, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    Whitney – still in my first year and desperate to shoot ANYTHING that I can. I’ve officially stopped offering free shoots for my porfolio and for the last 4-6 months its been crickets. Too many other photogs here in Utah to compete with – but it’s what I love. If I could specialize in weddings and seniors, my life would be complete!

  51. Michelle on June 5, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    Hi! 🙂 I’m Michelle and am located in Lancaster, PA. I’m currently in school towards my BFA in Photography and my biggest goal is attempting to graduate prior to 2020 {I’m going PT and it is taking f.o.r.e.v.e.r!}. I have a small business, and am currently figuring out what I want to do with my degree, even though it’s a ways off! I might do travel photography for a magazine or maybe fine art or editorial… 🙂

    Thanks for all of your hard work and the information you provide – I LOVE it! 🙂

  52. Megan on June 5, 2013 at 7:12 pm


    My name is Megan, and I’m a lurker in Kansas City. 🙂

    I had plans to be a photographer going into college, but let myself get talked out of it (by a photojournalist I job shadowed. What a grump). I still stuck with doing photography for fun, managed to still wind up with a BA in studio art, talked myself out of photography again, then got a Masters in Social Work. Well, here I am 3 years later, and I’ve finally officially started my business as of this year. My goal is to eventually transition out of my full-time social work job, and transition over to photography. I’m just working on building a client base, and just had my first in person sales session last month (it was exciting). Right now I have mainly shot newborns, children, families, maternity, and couples. I’d really like to start photographing seniors, so that’s another goal!

  53. jessie on June 5, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    jessie, yucaipa ca, shooting canon rebels despite the shit i get for it from other photographers, and i’m working on not being jaded that people are hiring iphonographers instead of me.

  54. Addie on June 5, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Hi, my name is Addie… Im a photographer in MS. I shoot weddings and portraits, primarily families with small children. I would love to do more offbeat weddings and families – thats my real niche, and Im always looking for something out of the box. Id also love to book enough so that it could be my main job instead of my second job.

  55. Nakesha on June 5, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    I think I’ve commented once before but I’m Nakesha, I am based in southern Oregon, and I specialize in high school seniors and weddings! I have been a profeessional for about 4 years now. Right now I’m working on a giant senior modeling session (8-10 girls at a time) and planning all the details and such is hard! I’ve enjoyed reading your blog since I stumbled across it about a year ago! In fact I am constantly sending your links to other photog friends of mine! 🙂

  56. Shauna on June 5, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    Hi I’m Shauna, I live in Saskatchewan, Canada. I shoot “family” photography but I sorta made my own term that means everything from pregnancy to seniors and everything in between including actual families and just couples. I also am learning glamour.

    Truthfully I’m new and learning lots every day. I do have a small business but am taking an unofficial break until late fall when my husband is done his apprenticeship and has his journeyman’s ticket.

    • Jenika on June 5, 2013 at 7:41 pm

      Shauna! I was just in Saskatchewan this past March, speaking at a PPOC event. It was so fun, and the photographers there are genius! nice to meet you! Way to keep learning and growing while you’re taking a break. xo

  57. Pam Christison on June 5, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Hi, I’m Pam, I do children/babies/senior photography in Albuquerque NM. My biggest challenge – never enough time to do it all! I feel like I end up spending my time working with clients and I never set aside enough time to work on my business. Also – I have 3 kids, that could be part of it. 🙂

  58. Beth on June 5, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Alright, I’ll de-lurk, but only because you asked nicely! 😉

    Beth Wendland, proudly shooting in the beautiful Northwest near Portland, Oregon!
    Number 2 and 3 are all mushed together right now. A little over a month ago I decided to stop shooting everything. I went into business so that (in part) I could have some control over my life, but instead, my photography was controlling me. So right now, I am in the middle of purging everything from my website and FB page that isn’t what I want to shoot. Makin’ big changes baby!

  59. Erin Wilson on June 5, 2013 at 7:50 pm

    Happy for the chance to say hi + thanks. I found your blog relatively recently (but not so recently that I remember how…). Always appreciate what you write.

    My name is Erin Wilson. I’m back in Canada for a couple months, but prepping for a move to Kurdistan (northern Iraq) this summer.

    I’m at the beginning of developing a photography business out of what has been a hobby. Haven’t quite found the edges of it yet, if I’m being perfectly honest.

    Biggest goal… see above 🙂

  60. Debbie on June 5, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    Debbie – from Monmouthshire, UK.
    I have shot mountain bike races, but want to move into fine art photography and environmental portraits.
    Currently half way through a Foundation Degree in Digital Photography – hope to complete it next year and move on into the final year of an interesting photography degree straight after that.

  61. Nicole on June 5, 2013 at 8:05 pm

    Hi, I’m Nicole, in CO.

    I photograph kids and families. I have a registered business and am working up to actually working in it 🙂 My biggest goal right now is to finally sit down and finalize a price list I believe in and then leap and start marketing myself for real.

  62. Wani on June 5, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Wow – what a great idea. My name is Wani and I’m based in Lagos, Nigeria. I am in my first year of my wedding and portrait photography business. Biggest challenge is finding clients who value my work and want to pay me what I think I’m worth. Love your stuff – been following you for about 2 years now but definitely a lurker – lol.

  63. Haley on June 5, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    I’m Haley Gilreath of HWG Photography & I’m located in Northeast GA, USA

    I specialize in newborns, toddlers/children, and families. I own a full time photography business & my studio is in my home.

    The biggest goal I’m working towards right now is ‘switching’ my clientele. I’ve been attracting the wrong *cheap* clients & I’ve recently overhauled my pricing & now I’m trying to ‘recover’ from the loss of clients & rebuild my business with the right people. BUT I did fulfill my goal of hiring a studio manager & she’s been a Godsend!

  64. April on June 5, 2013 at 8:23 pm

    Hello folks!

    I’m April all the way in sunny Kansas.

    My photography is really a balance of stylized shoots and art series for my own personal enjoyment. I’m the owner of both Aprilthoughts Photography and Raising Nerds, two separate entities that I’ve slaved through since their conception in 2007. My goal ATM is to continue working and building up regular bookings for Aprilthoughts, and publish a book series I’ve been working on.

    Love love love this blog! It married two of my favorite passions-psychology and photography, with such sass, I never think twice about opening the blog post when it hits my inbox!

  65. Heidi on June 5, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    I’m Heidi, in the DFW area of Texas. I’m a relatively new doula & birth photographer (about 2 years in business.) I’m also a childbirth educator, midwife assistant, a BirthNetwork chapter leader, and a few other things. 🙂

    My biggest goal right now (and always!) is finding balance between my different roles. I have loved making my business grow and being involved with families in such a HUGE, life altering experience. It’s amazing!! But I’m also mom to six little ones (11.5 years down through 2.5 years) and homeschooling and desperately trying to find the right balance with all these wonderful ways I can invest my time and energy. It’s a great challenge to have!

  66. Wendy Kovac on June 5, 2013 at 8:30 pm


    Definitely a lurker here, but happy to have the opportunity to come out of my shell for a minute! My name is Wendy Kovac and I am a maternity / newborn photographer in Myrtle Beach, SC. I get so excited when I see your blog posts come to my inbox. I have to drop everything and sit down and read them immediately! Thanks so much for all the helpful advise and inspiration! XOXO

  67. Aunika on June 5, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    Hey! I’m from Ontario Canada, Ive been shooting since I was a child really.. but I guess I took the leap and started my business shooting professionally in 2011. Booked my first 3 weddings this year and THRILLED! =)

  68. Elvira on June 5, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Hi everyone, I am Elvira and from Ontario, Canada

    I mainly focus on families and kids, with some couples as well. I am trying to build my portfolio right now.
    My biggest goal is to get jobs, as well as improve on my photography skills.

    Love the site and this is a great way to introduce ourselves!

  69. Liz on June 5, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    My name is Elizabeth Feild. I am an children’s portraiture in Virginia Beach, VA and I’m slowly but surely working my way up to stability off of my passion. I hope to add a glam line once my workflow is smooth.

  70. Natalie Young on June 5, 2013 at 8:53 pm

    My name is Natalie and I shoot mostly newborn, babies and children. I live in South Carolina. My biggest challenge right now is studio lighting, I am mostly doing outdoor sessions (or indoor with natural light for newborns)cause I am too scared to even attempt the studio lighting! But I plan to tackle it this year!!

  71. Sarah on June 5, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Ok, I’m de-lurking!!!

    I’m Sarah and I’m in Essex in the UK. I have a part-time photography business, mainly shooting weddings although I take on lots of different projects at the moment, working out what my niche is. My full-time job is as a Trainee Paramedic. I have no definite goal at the moment, just slowly growing my business, developing my style and trying to work out if I want to make the business a bigger part of my life than my full time job!

  72. Carrie on June 5, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    Hi there! A few years ago I received my master’s in clinical psychology and have been working as a mental health counselor. BUT I recently decided what would make me happy is to take pictures all the time. So here I am. Working on my first year of photography- website about to be published- and crossing my fingers it takes off!! I mainly stick to family portraits and weddings.

  73. Melissa on June 5, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    Hi Jenika!
    I’m a newborn photographer in sunny southern CA. I love reading all of your posts about the psychology behind the mistakes we make as business owners, and how we can improve upon that! I also love to hear all of your helpful little tricks, and insights, on what working with our customers. Happy day! Thank you 🙂

  74. Sonja on June 5, 2013 at 9:12 pm

    My name is Sonja… I have been shooting on and off for years… of which about 9 were and still are professionally and my full source of income. I currently live in the northern part of Florida on the Gulf Coast.
    My biggest challenge/goal is to transition from the majority of my business being in wedding photography (previously I was a photojournalist for 5 years in the news industry) to fine art boudoir photography, travel and hopefully work that makes a difference in the world.
    Here is the link to my business facebook page:

  75. Lisa Patchem on June 5, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    Lisa Patchem Photography – just relocated after years of moving around in the military to Longmont Colorado. Originally from Jersey Shore/NYC. I’ve worked in different aspects of the photography business for over 10 years. I specialize in custom art portraiture that involves lighting, graphic design, recycled material and digital manipulation.
    It’s really difficult to keep starting a business over and over. I haven’t found a good solution on how to introduce my business to a new area. Every area is different.

  76. Alice on June 5, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    Hi there!
    My name is Alice and I’m from Milan, Italy.
    I shoot with Nikon and have been a reporter for a while now, even if I like to do every kind of photography job.

    I’m currently working on opening a portrait business (I’m especially interested in children) and your blog is being very helpful!!


  77. Maureen Petru on June 5, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    Hello Jenika! Oh how I love you! In fact, I have begun to discuss with my business-oriented husband your blog posts that I have recently read. It has been a wonderful way for us to connect and have dialogue in an area that we never had dialogue before. I am currently in Pittsburgh, but in the process of moving to Austin, Texas! We are coming up on our 10th wedding anniversary and this is to be our 5th move! Wowza, huh.

    I started a business back in location #3. I was all of 6 months in when I found out we would probably be moving to location #4. When we arrived at location #4, I decided to take a step back and not jump back into business. It turned out to be the right decision for me. I spent time reading and studying photography. Even though I did not have clients, I still shot almost daily and just shared through my photography facebook page. I felt I had a vast improvement in both my skills and my ability to convey what I was feeling through photography. Now that we are moving to location #5, I am trying to decide if I jump back in to the waters. Lots of soul searching ahead for me.

    What did I do before photography? I have an BA in Child Psychology, and a masters in Education – counseling. I spent 8 years as a high school guidance counselor. That is, in part, why I just love you – it gets me back a bit to some of my “roots”. Thanks for being you, Jenika!

  78. Jenny Morgan on June 5, 2013 at 9:49 pm

    what a brilliant idea. 😉

    i’m jenny morgan and i live in san francisco. the best city ever.

    i’ve been a photog business owner for about a year. still learning. always will be. i do portraits (children and families mostly). i am in love with shooting families in their home, capturing authentic beautiful moments.

    biggest goal(s): getting more involved with the photography community in my area. continuing to define my “style.” feeling confident about my pricing and what i offer my clients. and figuring out how to use my photography to travel the world. <— my dream. 😉

    thank you for inspiring me. all. the. time.

  79. Celine on June 5, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    My name is Celine I’m French currently living in Stavanger, Norway but about to move to Beijing, China (for the second time!!). I’m about to close my business and hopefully will be able to reopen it (that could qualify as my goal for right now!!)… That’s the life of the Expats.

  80. Allison on June 5, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Allison from Richmond, V-A… long time reader, long time commenter. I’m at the edge of a precipice here in regards to my business. I’m being laid off from my full-time job, and I have to decide if I dare to go full time with my business, or pick up something else with the state (I’m a state employee). Considering I have had 1 paying client this year (I did a giveaway as well), I’m really fearful about going full time. My goal is to come to a decision I won’t regret, that won’t put my family’s finances in danger. I have a month to decide.
    Hope all is well with you!

  81. Dajuan on June 5, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    [Taking my place on your sofa] Hi, I’m Dajuan from Raleigh, NC and I’m a wedding photographer. My biggest goal is to continue business revenue growth while disengaging with EXPENSIVE advertising cost (ie. the Knot, WeddingWire, etc.)

  82. Craig Ashley Russell on June 5, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    I’ll introduce myself using the last two lines of my bio:
    For those of you I’ve worked with, you will know that I aspire to produce greatness for my clients, or die trying!

    For those of you who do not yet know me, my name is Craig Ashley Russell, and if you’ll indulge me… I want to make you famous.

  83. Ralph on June 5, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    Hi Jenika,
    my name is Ralph and I am from Germany. After studying photography and working as a freelance photojournalist I am building my wedding photography business at the moment. My biggest obstacle is myself. It is not easy for me to “sell myself”, as I am quite selfcritic.

    As I’ve been interested in psychology for more than 10 years I really like your blog, as it melts two of my biggest passions 🙂
    Thank you for sharing!


  84. Anna on June 5, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    Hi! I’m Anna and I’m in Brisbane, Australia. I have a wedding and portrait business and right now I’m working on booking more weddings for 2014. I’d like to have more consistent work and have it with the particular type of client I’m looking for – creative, feminine, dreamy:)

  85. Jen on June 5, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    Hi Jenika!
    My name is Jen Bertrand, and I recently relocated to Dallas, Texas from Austin, Texas. I’m shifting the focus of my business right now over to high school seniors and getting back into model/actor portfolios (which is what I started out doing straight out of college). My biggest hurdle right now is not only shifting that focus, but also figuring out how to get my business off the ground and market it in a city where I know virtually no one.

    I stumbled upon your site this week, and I’m addicted. I’ve already had quite a few “ah ha!” moments, and looking forward to more. Thanks for all the useful info. 🙂

  86. Vanessa Downs on June 5, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    Hi, I’m Vanessa and I own Sweet Pickles Photography in Sonoma County, California. I was a wedding photographer for 6 years and worked in an emergency room (those two things go together, right?!), then I was a fly fishing guide for 7 years with no photo business (but lots of photos!). Now I am out of the river and back behind the camera doing newborns (my favorite), kids and families, a little bit of corporate stuff, and just trying to figure out how to actually support myself and my 3 year old daughter doing photography full time! I’m a total lurker (sorry…but I love your stuff and have been following since your first month!), and a dreamer about what my life and business could look like if I finally got all the right pieces in place! I love people and I love to teach and encourage and motivate people to live their dreams, even if they are crazy/scary/unconventional. Okay, I’m done. Thanks!!

  87. Nyx on June 5, 2013 at 11:20 pm

    Heya 🙂 I’m Nikki, an Aussie currently based in Surrey in the UK. I’m currently taking a few years off the real world to travel, but I tend towards shooting live music and boudoir; I’ll be getting stuck in working towards shooting boudoir full-time when I (eventually) get back home 🙂

  88. Katie on June 5, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Hello! My name is Katie and I live in northern Nevada.
    I photograph just about anything that catches my eye.
    At the moment I am selling stock photography and working
    on my blog and wondering where I should go with it all.

  89. Terri Jacobson on June 5, 2013 at 11:39 pm

    Terri Jacobson from Salem, Oregon.

    I’m a fledgling pet photographer and I’m ready to dump my day job.

    PS, I love to lurk on your blog, it’s fabulous.

  90. Emma on June 5, 2013 at 11:40 pm

    What a great idea! 🙂

    Hi! *waves* I’m Emma, I’m 21 and I’m based in Australia. I officially registered my business this year and have been LOVING it so far! I shoot mainly family/couple/engagement portraits but in August I am shooting my first wedding and couldn’t be more excited 🙂 My main goal at the moment is marketing – since my business is still in the ‘baby’ stage. So I’ve been working on branding and marketing tactics and things like that! 🙂

  91. katie on June 5, 2013 at 11:43 pm

    Hi! I love this! Not even sure how long I’ve been lurking but it’s nice to finally change all of that. I’m in the burbs of Atlanta and am a child and family photographer. I have a very, very, very small business that I would love to grow into something amazing…(translation= full time). Thank you for your constant affirmations and advice. Can’t tell you how many times I have referenced your blog throughout the last year.

  92. Jenni on June 5, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    I am a photographer that just graduated from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. I am taking my first real summer as an “adult” and living near Denali, Alaska working at a photo studio and doing my own photography in my free time. I don’t really know where I am going but I love bringing people along in my travels through sharing my photographs. I really would like to sell my work but I haven’t had the time to find the best way to do so. I do occasional sessions but I am not confident enough yet – reading the blog has helped me with understand how people think, thank you!
    -Jenni (

  93. Amy Hill on June 5, 2013 at 11:56 pm

    Hi Jenika! I am a wedding and family portrait photographer in Cary, NC. I would also love to add senior portraits in the near future. I am the mom of 2 little girls so my biggest challenges are finding time and clients. My biggest goal is to convert this part time, very unstable income into enough to help support my family once they are in school (or else I will have to find a 9-5). I have been a reader since day 1 of P4P and learned so much! Thanks for all you do and share!

  94. Tracey Weir on June 6, 2013 at 12:05 am

    Hi, I’m Tracey from Christchurch, New Zealand.
    I have been taking photos since high school (eeekkk that’s 24 years since i discovered photography). I must admit that I fall in and out of love with photography quite often. I have an ideal in my head that i just can’t reach, so i get frustrated and walk away for a time. I am just putting together my final portfolio for an online course The Photography Institute.
    I love capturing anything really but especially landscapes, gritty and moody, wide open and minimal.
    i don’t have a business but I do want to move in that direction of portraits and landscape.
    love you site, thanks for doing what you do!

  95. Ilze on June 6, 2013 at 12:06 am

    I’m a South African woman living in Korea where I teach English to kindergarten kids and in my free time and on weekends I do photoshoots, mostly kids, families and couples. My big goal I’m working towards is having my own business in South Africa when we move there in 2014…
    Thank you for this blog post, I’m a lurker, but this made me think… WHY? So not going to lurk anymore 🙂

  96. Carol Walker on June 6, 2013 at 12:47 am

    Hi Jenika! I absolutely love your blog, I found it on Pinterest!
    I am an equine photographer living in Colorado and I photograph wild and domestic horses, and I am a wild horse advocate. I have had my business for 13 years, and am working on my 3rd book. is my photography website is my wild horse website.

    Carol, AKA
    No Longer Lurking

  97. Emma on June 6, 2013 at 1:04 am

    I am an English woman living in CT. I studied art a long LONG time ago but got sucked into the corporate world soon after. I am now rediscovering my creative side via photography. I bought my first DSLR two years ago and am currently enrolled in NYIP’s Complete Professional Photography Course. My goal is to finish the course and start my own business 🙂
    Right now, I am portfolio building (I have a full time *day job* and am a mum to a little one) but plan to take the plunge and start getting paid for this hobby of mine this fall.
    I love all of the resources you provide. Thanks for being here for us!

  98. Allison on June 6, 2013 at 1:16 am

    I’m Allison, and I just moved to San Diego, CA. I’m a full-time pet photographer, and since I relocated here just last week, I’m trying to re-establish my business all over again! (eek!) Thanks for an awesome blog Jenika!

  99. Michelle on June 6, 2013 at 1:39 am

    Michelle Spinola from Kansas City, MO
    Business: Spin Inspired Photography, specializing in family portraits.
    Working on: organization and workflow
    LOVE LOVE LOVE P4P! Every post is helpful!!!

  100. Stephanie Goryl on June 6, 2013 at 2:02 am

    Stephanie Goryl – Wakefield, MA
    Babies, kiddos, and families are what I love. My big goal this year – to establish my pro print products with my clients (just switched from shoot-n-burn).

    Love all of the advice on here! Thank you so much.

  101. Leanne on June 6, 2013 at 2:06 am

    Hi there,
    My name’s Leanne and I’m an Aussie.
    I started my business about 6 months ago but am finding it very hard to find time to shoot at all. I guess my family commitments are my priority right now but I love photography so much! I love to photograph children, babies, women and families – i just love the art of portraiture!
    My biggest goal – Is getting out of my own darn way so can start building my business! Stop making excuses and make it happen.
    Love dropping by this blog, always gives me something to think about.

  102. Paul on June 6, 2013 at 2:44 am

    I live in Ottawa, Canada. I studied photography in the 1970s and did portraits and some commercial for a few years, Moved into writing news releases and PR for many years. Now I teach photography at high school and plan to start a part time photo business on the side and during my summers.

  103. Melinda T on June 6, 2013 at 2:58 am


    I’m Melinda from Milwaukee, WI. I recently closed up my studio, but am getting ready to work from home. I shoot mainly children and family with a handful of seniors thrown in. The biggest thing I’m working on right now is rebuilding my brand, (so many decisions!) and improving my skills!

  104. Asia Croson on June 6, 2013 at 3:06 am

    Hi Jenika!
    I’ve commented like once before, go me!
    My name is Asia Croson and I am in San Luis Obispo, CAlifornia, which Oprah has dubbed the happiest place in America! We are pretty happy!
    I shoot everything except newborns right now, but am trimming down to focus on college senior portraits. Really trying to make it a thing here on the central coast! I have only been in business since October, and just recently moved it from my studio apartment into an office and hired two assistants! My goal is to continue to grow and be more involved in my community and be recognizable to college faces!

    Thanks for the de-lurk 😉

  105. Nicci Cooper on June 6, 2013 at 3:19 am

    Sup! My name is Nicci Cooper and I use Nikon. I am a just starting my wedding and portrait photography business. My goal for this year is to really understand what it means to be in business, and really define who I am as an artist. And nail down my website design!

  106. Tyler on June 6, 2013 at 3:38 am

    Hi Jenika!

    I’m Tyler and I’m a portrait and advertising photographer based in Worcester, Massachusetts.

    Advertising pays the bills, but my love is portraiture. Today I shot someone who told me she wasn’t photogenic. Thirty minutes into the session, her mind had been changed. I’ve seen my work bring grown men to tears and change the way people walk. It’s my own way of changing the world, just a tiny bit.

    I also want to travel the country (and eventually the world) shooting travel stories for magazines. I hope to circumnavigate the USA by train this winter (for under $700!)

    Finally, I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed your post about trading sessions with another photographer. I haven’t found anyone in Massachusetts yet but I’m still trying! If you’re ever in the area, I’d love to trade with you! 😉

    Keep up the wonderful work! I always love reading your work and finding ways to apply what you teach to my own business and life.



    PS: Here’s my Facebook page, as requested:

  107. Sarah Schwind on June 6, 2013 at 4:12 am

    Hi my name is Sarah Schwind, I live in Ocean City, Maryland. I am a portrait photographer and I am officially launching business the 21st of June. This is my grandmothers birthday (she will be 94) and I am dedicating it to her, because she is the one who has inspired me to become the artist I am. In her words “artists see the world differently.” I am a young mother of four. And have been busy establishing balance and an enriched life for my family. I am now ready to take the plunge into business and I couldn’t be more excited and scared at the same time. I was a second shooter (weddings) for several years, but I find myself attracted to children and families now-go figure. Thanks for all of your helpful information. It is greatly appreciated.

    I am an official “lurker” I never comment-ever. Today is an exception I suppose.

  108. Barbie Whiteside on June 6, 2013 at 4:21 am

    My name is Barbie. I live in Portland, OR and grew up in Portland, ME. My dear aunt passed away last year and left me a little money. I decided to invest it in a nicer camera. I bought a Nikon d3200. I have a Tamron 18-270 lens that I shoot everything with. I’m on a tight budget! I have another “day job” and I’m mostly doing family photos and weddings right now, as I build my business up. I’m super scared of developing a website. I have one that isn’t current that someone else set up for me, but mostly post to my FB page because its so much easier. I know this is a no no but I need to take a class I think! I love getting your emails, so thought provoking 🙂

  109. Sabina Lorkin on June 6, 2013 at 6:07 am

    Hi I’m Sabina. I’m British but moved to Normandy in northern France nine years ago. I’m now building my small business that I started back in 2008.

    I shoot Weddings, kids outdoor sessions and am beginning to do newborn sessions too. I have really appreciated your blog and articles since I discovered your site.

  110. Coralie on June 6, 2013 at 6:16 am

    Hi Jenika,

    I’m Coralie Sneddon. I shoot mainly lifestyle portraits here in Moscow, Russia where we’ve been living for just over 4 years.

    My biggest goal right now is getting a personal project finalised. I went home to New Zealand for just over a month to capture all things charming and quirky … using just my iPhone.

    I have two little girls under 5, so not as many hours in the day as I’d like…. My business is just getting started really.

    Have a great de-lurking day – awesome idea by the way 😉

  111. Chandelle on June 6, 2013 at 6:35 am

    My name is Chandelle. I live in Idaho and am trying to build my own photography business. I have about 3 years experience working at BSU as a student photographer and almost 8 months experience working at JCPenney Portraits but I really want to have my own photography business. The biggest goal that I’m working towards is to get my website done (the way that I want it to be) and to get more clients!

  112. Craig Payne on June 6, 2013 at 6:50 am

    Hi Jenika,
    I’m Craig, a photographer focusing on equine and wedding photography in Sussex, England, and I adore natural light.
    My biggest challenge at moment is to grow my at liberty photos of horses enjoying themselves in their natural environment. It’s a very rewarding challenge it must be said!! Also I’m about to embark on a website redesign.
    Thank you for sharing your wisdom, I have been following your page since the new year and have found your words thought provoking and extremely positive.
    All the best,

  113. Karin Aiello on June 6, 2013 at 7:02 am

    My name is Karin Aiello and I’m located in Boise, Idaho. (Found out about you from our mutual friend Shalimar!)

    I shoot anything and everything and love it all. My business is Day Three Studios. I’ve been in business for 1.5 years and shooting for about 6ish?

    My biggest goal right now is transitioning from solely digital files to doing in-person ordering for print sales. Terrified and unorganized are understatements. 🙂

    My Facebook page is

  114. Cassie on June 6, 2013 at 9:02 am

    Hi there! My name is Cassie and I shoot weddings/bridals/engagements, family, baby, and senior portraits, as well as missions trips/travel. I’m from Central Texas but I’m currently living in Ukraine! I have had my own business since 2009. It’s been such a joy.

    My biggest goal is honestly getting more organized and seeing myself as a “good” photographer. It started off as a favor and has developed into something I can’t see myself living without. I still believe that it’s a hobby deep down and my organization and the way I run my business looks like a hobby. I’ve been making steps in the past month to get “serious” about it and hopefully will be able to do so by the end of summer.

    I’m definitely a lurker and am grateful for the opportunity to dialogue a little bit! I love this page and the posts have been most encouraging and insightful. Thanks for everything! 🙂

  115. Jamie Willmott on June 6, 2013 at 11:03 am

    I’ve commented on the blog a few times before, but thought I’d say Hi anyway.

    I’m Jamie and I live in St Helens in the UK (it’s next to Liverpool)

    My work background is mostly in software, but I did work as a photographer for the Venture portrait studio chain for a while. I did look into setting up a photography business a couple of years ago, but then ended up in my current IT role.

    I’d rather be doing something more creative for a living, but I’m still trying to figure out what that is – I don’t think a photography career is really for me. I still enjoy this blog though as the information applies to many creative industries.

    My current goal is teaching myself how to draw ‘properly’. I’ve always done doodles and cartoons, but want to learn some proper foundations.

  116. Melissa Ann on June 6, 2013 at 11:51 am

    Hi, I’m Melissa from Greenville, SC. I photograph mainly newborns and maternity with some lifestyle family. And I’m trying so hard to convince pregnant friends that to let me shoot their births so I can break into birth photography. I write about finding beauty in the everyday mess.

    I’m a lurker here because, except for the early mornings, I don’t have 39 seconds it takes o comment. I’m also wearing the stay at home mommy hat to three 3and under.

    Thanks for encouraging me on my journey!

  117. Amber Wilkie on June 6, 2013 at 12:43 pm

    Hello! I’m in Arlington, VA and I’ve been running a wedding photography business for about 4 years now. It’s been a smashing success and I’m really happy with where I’m at right now. It’s probably a bad thing I don’t have a big goal I’m working toward… but my husband is working toward a PhD and in 3-or-so years, we’ll likely be moving abroad, so mostly we’re just saving money and enjoying life.

  118. Miranda on June 6, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    Long time lurker! I have to say, this is my favorite subscription on my Feedly! Thanks so much for all you do for all of us. 🙂

    I am a wedding and portrait photographer from Texas. My biggest goal right now is a little different than my usual business goals: I want to take the steps to be able to spend one extra day a week not working or shooting, but spending it with my small son.

  119. Samantha on June 6, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    Hi Jenika! Thank you for making me ‘show up’. I love your posts, they are brilliant! 80% of the time I feel like you are speaking directly to me! Amazing!
    My name is Samantha and I just relocated my biz of 10+ years from Gig Harbor, Washington to Rhinebeck, New York (where I’m originally from). I like to call myself a ‘lifestyle photographer’ specializing in children, babies, pregnancy, families etc. so, I’m trying to rebuild and make a name for myself here, but I am finding that it is taking more time than I thought. Thanks so much! 🙂

  120. Kate Danielle on June 6, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    Hi I’m Kate, I live near Atlanta, GA. I’m a wedding photographer and I am slowly growing my business. My goal is to get myself out there and moving. I get so wrapped up in my computer and office stuff but I know I am not going to meet clients in my home office (in my PJs). I want to come up with ways to get social and market…. I can sometimes be quiet in social settings …. But no more! Today I De-Lurk!!

  121. Ashok on June 6, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    Hi, I just wandered off. Nice feel here. Wonder what is De Lurking.

    Cheers anyway.

  122. Mark on June 6, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    I am Mark Bradford and my wife, Jo, and I run a business in Berkshire, England. We are primarily Wedding Photographers but do a bit of other stuff.

    My biggest challenge? Marketing as usual. I not only want more but more of “the right type” although I haven’t defined what that is yet. After going full-time 5 years ago and struggling I have taken full-time employment again working photography on the side. it’s liberating not to lay awake at night worrying about money so my main goal is to balance work (photography and other) with my life as a whole

  123. Kate on June 6, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Right. I am ditching my British reserve and throwing caution to the wind. I am now a proud de-lurker.

    My name is Kate and I specialise in child portraits, with birth photography becoming a firm favourite of mine. I like my business, I love to write, so trying to find a way to combine the two. Getting there. But SLOWLY.

    Pretty pictures are all very well, but the stuff that really gets me going is a story in an image. That’s what I hope to deliver to clients.

    Your blog gives me a good prod when necessary.

    So hello. With a little wave from London(ish).

    • Jenika on June 6, 2013 at 2:55 pm

      EEEEEEK! (<--- that was some non-British non-reserve for you.) Thank you for de-lurking, Kate! I'm a fellow writer who loves pretty pictures. You and I are definitely in the same camp. Camps, I should say.....since we've both established we prefer sitting and dress only for special occasions like, you know, leaving the house.

  124. Caitlin McColl on June 6, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Aha – had a good giggle to myself reading this (from my inbox). I am as lurky as you can get – I do read your blog religiously but I’ve never commented before.
    So – I’m Caitlin McColl from Melbourne, Australia. I run my own pet photography business (Ragamuffin Pet Photography) and my biggest goal is to grow my business to be sustainable as a full-time business (at the moment I have to shoot kindergarten photography to pay the bills).

  125. Timothy on June 6, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    My name is Tim, I shoot Nikon as a hobbyist in southwest WA. I work as an engineer at Hewlett-Packard, but I hope to someday have a small side business doing wedding photography.

  126. The Dog Photographer on June 6, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    I photograph dogs in Dallas and NYC. Great blog!

  127. Lillian on June 6, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    Lillian. Lancaster, PA. I’m a family photographer:) biggest goal: increasing my business income to be able to attend two workshops I’ve been dying to attend!

  128. Janine A. Enold on June 6, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    Hey Jenika!

    My name is Janine. I’m a photographer based out of Lynchburg, VA. Right now I’m a generalist! I know that I would like to specialize but I guess I’m just trying to find out what I enjoy shooting best that way I can narrow it down! I work full time and do this as a second job. I’m kind of using this time to determine as well how I like the business side of photography or if I could to figure out if I would want to make this my full time profession! My biggest goal right now is to get my workflow down so that I can make my life with two jobs more efficient! I love your blog and you always make everything so clear!



  129. Brooke on June 6, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    Brooke, Louisville, KY. I’m a portrait photographer on the side with hopes of going full-time some day. My biggest goals is to improve my clients’ experience, continue learning and take it all to the next level!

  130. Justin on June 6, 2013 at 8:29 pm

    I’m Justin in heart of Atlanta.

    I shoot some portraits and events (and landscapes, and street photog, and so on. I am slowly narrowing the niche).

    I want to do photography at least as a part time business.

    My biggest goal right now is to sell some of my photography. I will be in a community show in August, so we’ll see what happens.

    I just found and am enjoying your blog!

  131. Will on June 6, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    Luv …& Thanks. Will Nelson owner of Joshua Ian Photography (my 10 year old son’s name sake)I shoot People portraits in Las Vegas (but not newborns… i leave that to the artist that enjoy it). Would love to have more clients willing to invest in cherished family memories and desire fine art family prints.

  132. Barb Kellogg on June 6, 2013 at 9:03 pm


    Hi. My name is Barb Kellogg and I’m a lurker.

    I’m from central Minnesota. I photograph nature, pet portraits, and am currently honing my people portrait skills (kids, families, individuals). Yes I have a business, and even though I knew self employment would be difficult, wow, it’s a learning curve all on it’s own! My biggest goal is to work on “getting myself out there” – I just dread self promotion. I know I’m not alone. But it’s still hard. But I’m working on it. Baby steps.

    Thanks for the prompt to leave you a comment! Love your blog.


  133. Anda on June 6, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Bonjour from Montreal, Canada!

    How thoughtful of you to ask about your readers…

    I’m a new photographer who has kind of thrown herself into business. I shoot portraits, mainly in my home studio. I’ve learned a great deal from your articles on marketing and I always enjoy reading your intelligent commentary on the photography industry. Keep up the good work!

    If you’re ever in Montreal, I would be ‘très’ happy to treat you to a latté and a croissant!

    No web page yet, but I do have this:

    • Jenika on June 6, 2013 at 9:13 pm

      Bonjour Anda!!

      Oh my gosh, croissants….om nom nom…so sweet of you. Thanks for the kind words, and all the best with your business! I love studio work, especially black and whites…something very immediate and human about it when done well. I hope to see you around again! 🙂

  134. Marie on June 6, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    I’m Marie, just outside London (the England one) and I shoot children and families (and will always find saying that slightly amusing in a childish way). The biggest goal I’m working on right now is juggling because I keep getting extra plates to spin. Or is that mixing metaphors? Bah.

  135. Terran on June 6, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    Hi! I’m Terran & I’m a pet photographer in San Diego, California ( The biggest goal I’m working on right now is breaking out of my very-introverted shell to approach other pet-related businesses so we can work together and grow!

    • Ali Peterson on June 10, 2013 at 10:20 pm

      Hey Terran,

      Approaching pet related businesses is daunting, but it’s one of the absolute best ways to get your name out. Just go for it!

  136. Michelle McDaid on June 6, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    Strictly speaking, I do not “lurk” since I only read your posts in-email. But I thought I would come on over and say hi anyway.

    I’m Michelle McDaid and I’m located in the currently blisteringly hot Sacramento area. I shoot mainly families and young children through my business, Memories by Michelle Photography. (

    My biggest goal I’m working towards right now is executing a pretty unique idea i have to blend my photography and writing skills, to do something really different in the realm of family photography which, IMHO, has become a bit uninspiring lately. (With some notable exceptions.) It’s going to be an iterative process, however, to get there. Excited but impatient!

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your posts. Never fail to read them and always get something valuable out of them. Keep going!

  137. Kate on June 6, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    Hello from London!
    Thanks for this prompt. I have been enjoying reading your posts for a while now. I am a portrait photographer here in England and only recently actively started dabbing in social media. Hopefully will engage more now. See you soon on your blog! Kate

  138. Jenny on June 6, 2013 at 9:42 pm

    I’m jenny from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Love reading this blog! I’m not a business person at all and this blog really helps me out. I love photographing children but I mostly do families. My business is pretty small at this point. I had some big goals set for this summer but because of personal reasons my business is going to have to take a backseat. But I’m not in a hurry and I’m staying busy with the shoots I have so I guess I’ll just have to be patient.

  139. Heather Armijo on June 6, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    Hi, I’m Heather from Heather Armijo Photography! I’m in Katy (Houston) Texas, with a part time business, right now I’m working hard to turn my focus towards newborns and kiddos under 1. Love this blog, so many times I’ve been reading and had ‘ah ha’ moments!

  140. Mindy Shamp on June 6, 2013 at 10:11 pm

    I’m totally a lurker! No more of that!

    My husband Jordan and I run JAM Photography, LLC in Chapel Hill, NC

    We’ve shot a little bit of everything, but our main focus is now families. Especially everyday/lifestyle stuff shot at a family’s home.

    I’ve been full-time since 2009 (after shooting three years part time) with Jordan helping me out on evenings and weekends. We have a baby boy due in August this year, and are taking a little hiatus to spend time with him and refocus on shooting what we really love. I get a little more burned out at the beginning of each year, but this year’s been the worst. I’m hoping time off with my little man and his daddy will help me refocus. And I’ll have a new test subject while learning to shoot film!

    Thanks for encouraging us to de-lurk…I always feel like such a creeper when I don’t comment or get involved! 🙂

  141. Dorota on June 6, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    Hi, my name is Dorota and I live in Washington DC area. I’ve discovered you website not long time ago and I fell in love with it from the first sign!! We have a lot in common. Currently, I’m pursuing my degree in psychology and I love photographing people (especially kids). On daily basis I work with children as a nanny and I know how much work is with them 😉 I would love to turn my passion into a business, but because of many circumstances I can’t start anything right now. Also, I’m afraid that this passion would stop being the passion when you have to worry about everything that goes with running your on business.

    The biggest photography goal right now is to start working with film SLR camera (I wasn’t interested in photography until I was about 20y.o., so I started with DSLR). My personal goal is to work hard to stay in the States and finish my school (I’m a visa holder).

    I love your work and posts. I love how knowledgeable you are, but at the same so humble. You are wonderful teacher!! 🙂

  142. Noelle on June 6, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    Hello from a Minneapolis lurker! Thanks for posting – I’ve been reading for probably almost a year now, and your posts tend to be the one I bookmark most 🙂

    I shoot mostly weddings and couples, with a small handful of family and headshot sessions here and there for good measure. Right now my biggest goal is to just find BALANCE. I work full time in addition to managing my business, and volunteer for several other organizations, so needless to say it’s a little busy!

  143. Alexis on June 6, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    Hello! My name is Alexis. I think I’ve commented once before, a while back, but I mostly lurk. It’s surprising how much courage it takes to de-lurk! I live in Paducah, KY and I’m a stay at home mother to two little girls, ages 3 and 1 1/2. I’m also an artist in general, though I don’t really have time or space for my drawing anymore. I started out motherhood with a point and shoot, and I take tons of pictures of my babies, and then it broke. I was never very happy with it anyway. Which lead me to buying a Nikon D3100 with 2 kit lenses. Somewhere between then and now, I guess my babies made me a photographer. I started out just trying to get good photos of my children. I really love natural light portrait photography, families and engagements and maternity and so on. Do I own a business? Sort of. I have done a few paid shoots, and made myself a logo and a facebook page, Glorious Moments Photography. Sometimes I feel like I’m pretending. lol. I would like to grow it into something more, but at the same time, I can’t commit to a full time job, as my priority is to stay home with our children. So I hope to keep learning a lot, and be able to ask a decent price for my work, but keep it as a side job. I would be thrilled to invest in some better equipment, especially a good lens, but that seems rather far off in the future right now. Lately, my goal is work on my posing and framing, and get better at getting close to my subjects and capturing the details. I love how helpful your posts have been for someone like me! Thank you!

  144. Brooke Schultz on June 6, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    I’m Brooke Schultz, Utah wedding photographer working toward making my photographs more intentional and artful. I’m thankful for your call to do this today, because it’s been one of those days where I retreat into myself and hate all of my photos and swirl into blahhh land–thanks for lifting me today with connection. 🙂

  145. Michelle on June 7, 2013 at 12:34 am

    My name is Michelle in Alexandria, Virginia. I’m an amateur photographer itching to go pro soon (albeit part time…..). I spent my life taking pictures around the world, but rarely in my own back yard. In the last year, I’ve fallen in love with portrait photography. Not sure I’m ready for wedding photography yet, but I’ve gotten experience doing couple shoots, maternity shoots, and fashion shoots.

    I don’t have a website or blog yet, but I have a FB fan page:

  146. Morgana creely on June 7, 2013 at 1:19 am

    Hi from Morgana in Australia. 🙂

    I am a photographer/retoucher, creating cinematic portraits. As a new business, my goal is to grow and share the work that I love so much. 🙂

  147. Dawn Aiello on June 7, 2013 at 1:48 am

    Hi there! Thanks so much for your website! I’m not sure I even qualify as a lurker because I just recently started following you, but I’m really excited to get more involved. 🙂

    My name is Dawn and I live in Athens, GA. I work full-time for a nonprofit but I have a photography business (Saving Dawn Photography) set up on the side . I’ve done two weddings and have two more set up for this year, but most of my work has been portraits. I’m really excited because I just got a Nikon D600 a few months ago – what a difference!

    I guess the biggest problem right now is that I don’t know what I want my next goal to be (other than making enough money to afford a 24-700 lens.) 🙂 I’m not sure where I want the business to go and I’ve been fortunate to not have to do much of my own direct marketing to get the clients I’ve received so far. But I’m ready for some inspiration!

    3) The biggest goal you’re working toward right now. Can be anything.

  148. Alanna Rowley on June 7, 2013 at 2:26 am

    Hi Jenika. My name is Alanna. I am a newly graduated Nurse Practitioner with many years of PICU RN experience living in Southern California. I picked up photography in lieu of painting as a way of continuing to be creative even when extremely busy! Now I am formally starting an LLC as alannarene photography. I am mostly doing family and child photography but I’d love to do more weddings and some contests. It has been a crazy adventure! I found your blog TODAY and am excited to subscribe and read. I’ll head over to FB too. Thanks for the inspiring blog!

  149. Anne U on June 7, 2013 at 3:00 am

    Hi, I’m from the Madison WI area, just started my business. Right now I’m just trying to soak everything in, there’s so much to know about business, marketing, photography… Found your site not too long ago, can’t wait to read more.

  150. Ali Peterson on June 7, 2013 at 3:02 am

    Hey Jenika, Im Ali Peterson of Skyy Blue Photography. I’ve commented more than a few times on your blog because it’s just that good! My specialty is pet photography…and cleaning up after 3 dogs & a husband. I’m a San Diego native, temporarily living in Colorado Springs, with plans to move back to SD within a year. My biggest goal right now is keeping my sanity while trying to book clients with minimal marketing (since the whole relocating thing makes things a bit difficult). Your posts always leave me thinking seriously about my business and my life. Thanks!

  151. Jayme on June 7, 2013 at 4:32 am

    Hi all – Jayme from the Chicagoland area (currently hanging out in Homer, AK through the end of July). I am a Canon shooter. My “real job” is shooting for Lifetouch doing portrait/candid sport photography, but my real love is in landscape/nature photography. I do some freelance projects while at home, but also take my summers to travel and participate in work/trade programs.

  152. Josh Jones on June 7, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    I guess it’s time to de-lurk as well… My name is Josh Jones, I’m a wedding photographer based in Greenville, SC. Right now my biggest goal is launching my new brand and website.

  153. Rob on June 7, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    Hi, My name is Rob, from CT, and I found this Blog a little over a month ago. I am just starting out on the business side of photography and I was fortunate enough to assist some great photographers last year. I do wedding and portrait photography but I tend to enjoy portraits better.

    This year I am trying to launch on my own. I work as a contractor for a bank so that I don’t get complacent in a “perm”role. I know that I will not be happy until I am doing photo fulltime. I am reading everything I can get my hands on and will be working on a website over the next week or 2.

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge.


  154. Asashia on June 7, 2013 at 6:12 pm

    Hi Jenika!
    I’ve only been reading a few months so this is a special holiday for the both of us! My name is Asashia and I’m located in Maryland. My photography business is 3 years new and you’re helping me learn everything I need to know. I mainly shoot portraits for children and families and love it! My biggest goal is learning how to market my business in a way that is authentic and attracts the people I love working with—all without spending a lot of money…because I’m not making a lot yet!
    Thanks for all that you do to help our industry, it is greatly appreciated!

  155. Gathoni on June 7, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    Hiya Jennika!

    Finally delurking from Nairobi, Kenya. My business is documenting weddings and familys. I also love to travel and write so I’m also working on getting a separate blog out for that work. My biggest challenge is not letting the fear get in the way. I have such big dreams, I get overwhelmed by the ‘how’.

    Thank you for this wonderful resource. 🙂

  156. Kath on June 7, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    Hi, I’m in Lancashire in the UK. Got a wedding photography business and looking to expand into portraits!

  157. Jennifer Blake on June 7, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    My name is Jennifer and currently i live in Jacksonville North Carolina where my husband is stationed, i’m in the process of closing up my business here and taking a break from the photography business while we prepare to move to Okinawa, Japan!
    I’ve been reading your blog for so long, i think i’ve read every single article. Thanks so much for everything you post. Everything makes so much sense and its helped me so much. My business is more geared towards creative engagement and couples sessions, and military families.

    Biggest goal i’m working toward right now-taking a break from the business aspect while we move to Japan and i will be focusing om bettering myself by working as a hobby and not under pressure, I’m hoping to do some amazing styled shoots in some amazing new locations. And i plan to keep reading your articles and stay business smart, so when i decide to start a business again i’ll make less mistakes.

  158. Editha Schoeffler on June 7, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    My name is Editha Schoeffler and I’m located in Lafayette, Louisiana, USA.

    I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark III and I’m still learning how to use it. I’m new in the photography business. I love to shoot little children, families and high school seniors. I want to eventually shoot weddings, but I know how much work in takes to shoot one. I would like to work with a mentor one day. It’s just finding one to work with. I don’t know how to go about doing that.

    I have a lot of goals and one of them is to be able to just work with my photography business. I also have a full time job working as an land person doing research for oil and gas properties. One day, I would just like to have photography as my only job. It’s my passion! Of course all photographers say the same thing that it’s their passion and I get that. It’s the one thing that all people want to do is have a job that they totally love and is their passion. One day is a great possibility.

  159. Editha Schoeffler on June 7, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    My name is Editha Schoeffler and I’m located in Lafayette, Louisiana, USA.

    I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark III and I’m still learning how to use it. I’m new in the photography business. I love to shoot little children, families and high school seniors. I want to eventually shoot weddings, but I know how much work in takes to shoot one. I would like to work with a mentor one day. It’s just finding one to work with. I don’t know how to go about doing that.

    I have a lot of goals and one of them is to be able to just work with my photography business. I also have a full time job working as an land person doing research for oil and gas properties. One day, I would just like to have photography as my only job. It’s my passion! Of course all photographers say the same thing that it’s their passion and I get that. It’s the one thing that all people want to do is have a job that they totally love and is their passion. One day is a great possibility.

  160. Fabienne on June 7, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    Hi, I’m Fabienne, I live in New Jersey and I’ve been shooting a little here and there on a canon rebel t2 but just recently upgraded to a Nikon D600. I am teaching myself to shoot professionally by reading blogs and practicing with friends and fellow enthusiasts. I love doing portraits and hope to second shoot or assist with events. I’m a professional graphic designer but I’m entertaining the thought of transitioning to photography once I learn all the ropes. 🙂

  161. Jen on June 7, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    I’m Jen, I’ve been lurking from Virginia for a few months now and really enjoy the blog. I do have a small business but would like to grow it, especially in wedding photography. My main goal right now is figuring out how to balance growing my business, still having to have a regular full time job, and my family and friends! It can all get overwhelming!

  162. Martina on June 8, 2013 at 2:24 am

    Hey Jenika! I’m a few days late…I’m Martina Wendland from Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. I shoot lifestyle weddings & extended families. My biggest goal is finding the elusive work-life balance, as well as focusing my attention on gratitude. Thank you for your awesome blog and amazing information. You rock!

  163. Lydia on June 8, 2013 at 5:42 am

    I’m a few days late as well….but I’m from Dallas-ish, Texas and I’m not even a photographer. So why am I following your blog? Pure curiosity. I’m a college student studying psychology, so your blog really interests me and I like figuratively hearing your perspective. I have a few goals: to read 50 books over the course of 2013, to continue in my new-found motivation to be fit, and to pass the biology CLEP test this summer so I don’t have to take another science course ever again! (This de-lurking thing is fabulous, by the way)

  164. Arved on June 8, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    >1) Your name and whereabouts you’re located.

    Hi! My name is Arved, and I’m a newcomer to your blog. I’m located in the Jacksonville, Florida, metropolitan area.

    >2) Your photography details (what do you shoot? do you have a business? do you want to have a business?):

    I’ve been struggling as a wedding and portrait photographer for the past 15 years, but have been photographing or a lot longer. Yeah, I cut my teeth in the profession with big medium format SLR film cameras.

    >3) The biggest goal you’re working toward right now. Can be anything.

    Marketing. I hate being marketed to, and I like to treat others like I like to be treated. I am trying to find something that works while avoiding being pushy. It’s not working – thank God for the day job.

  165. Renee on June 8, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    I am a birth and newborn photographer. I also enjoy doing stylized shoots for my own (14) children. My style is clean, simple, natural. I also blog about my family over at:

  166. Ramy on June 8, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    Hello. My full name is Ramy Racelis. My wife and I own and we have been doing this since January 2004. I shoot with a Canon 5D mark iii.

    Our biggest goal – we’re using our business to save for our daughter’s college fund and the rest goes to make a wish foundation.

    I have a day job that pays the rest of the household bills.

  167. G Dewey Powell on June 8, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    Hello, my name is George Powell but most know me by dewey. I am a Marine Combat Veteran out of the Vietnam era, and about 4.5 years ago, I thought it time to look for a way to capture some of the beauty I had become aware of as I had aged. I bought a Nikon D40 with a kit lens off craigslist, and have since, bought the D7000 and currently shoot daily with the D7100 and keep the D7000 in the bag with an 18-200mm at the ready! My only desire is that I take a better picture today than yesterday, and my only regret is not starting years ago….

  168. Regina on June 9, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    You’re right, dear… I used to comment regularly, now ive turned into a lurker. I have my excuses, (like that i have no internet but my cell phone at home), alas, i still lurk too much.

    Ok, hello all, im Regina. A wife, mother, and photographer living aboard my sailboat currently in Portland, Maine. Im just starting to get my business going up here, and i focus on portraiture for women!

    I love the blog and have been following since near the beginning. Thank you, Jemima for being so willing to share with us!!!


  169. Kaysha on June 10, 2013 at 6:00 am

    Hi I’m Kaysha, and I live in Orange County, California. I’m a wedding photographer and my biggest goal is having a better work-life balance.

  170. Laura on June 10, 2013 at 8:41 am

    I’m Laura, from Spain. I came across your blog recently and read it from beginning to end! I’m trying to finish my pdh and total newbie in photography. In fact I’m still in the why-are-my-pics-blurry phase….

  171. Funke on June 10, 2013 at 10:25 am

    My name is Funke and I live in London, England.
    I have a business which i started just over a year ago on a part-time basis specialising in wedding and portrait photography and I shoot with a canon.
    Biggest Goal: Turning my passion into a full-time business, developing my photography and business skills and becoming the best as i can be at what I do…. Whoosh!!!!

  172. Funke on June 10, 2013 at 10:27 am

    I also forgot to mention how much i love your blog and how it has helped me tremendously…. You are truly a blessing…. xoxo

  173. Tricia on June 10, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    Hi! I’m late finding this post, but I always read your blog faithfully. 🙂 So much wonderful information! I am a small business wedding photographer currently based out of Northwestern Iowa. I shoot with a canon 5D3 and 5d2 and love them! The biggest thing I am working on is building my professional web image and constantly furthering my photography education! (pretty much addicted to that) 😀

  174. Britney Patterson on June 10, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    Hi there! First-time poster! Long-time lurker.

    I am Britney and I reside in the most north-eastern city in the continental US- Madawaska, Me. It’s a quiet place, but the scenery is inspiring.

    I am a wedding and event photog, but portraits keep me busy throughout the year as well. I do own my own company, running strong for over a decade. Just recently re-located to Maine from the Texas hill country.

    My biggest goal for 2013? More newborns!

  175. Justine Cirullo on June 10, 2013 at 10:39 pm

    Hey all! I’m Justine here in Seattle! I capture life’s moments and love every minute of it! Right now, I’m just trying to find a balance between all that we have going on. I started a part time job two weeks ago working at the gym that my husband is a personal trainer at, we have an online meal & workout planning business as well as my photography business and this weekend we took over a volunteer role at our church. It’s all new and exciting and can’t wait to get a plan in place to be successful at it:) Love reading all the great info here and sharing it with my entre-friends!

  176. Jennifer Stein on June 11, 2013 at 2:23 am

    I am so glad I found your blog. It is reliably insightful and encouraging.

    I am Jennifer Stein of Pittsburgh, PA. I spent hours of high school in the darkroom working on yearbook photos and have been passionate about photography for years and years. In the fall of last year, I started a family portrait business. I have done a few small weddings, a little commercial work and a few birth stories too. I have my own family – four kids who are 10 and under.

    My biggest goal at the moment is to finish my business website.

    Love your blog, Jenika !


  177. Sophie on June 11, 2013 at 3:13 am

    Hi!!! I’m Sophie and I live in Illinois! I’m working on starting a portrait photography business, so that’s my biggest goal right now! Also I just LOVE your blog, it’s SO helpful! =D

  178. Kate on June 11, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    Hi! I’m Kate, and I’m from Boston, MA.
    I think I de-lurked last year, but clearly have gone back to my “lurker” status!
    I have spent the last year doing mainly newborn and senior photo shoots. Right now I have more of a successful hobby that gives me some extra pocket money. I’m trying to have a successful business, but I’m afraid to up my pricing to a place where I can start to really succeed! I need to just sit down, buckle up, and do it! My goals are to work on my pricing and marketing – getting myself out there to the people I’d like to photograph!
    My other minor problem is that in 3 months I will be relocating clear across the country to LA and restarting this successful hobby/business from scratch! I’d like to get the ground work done now, so that when I get out there, I can just work on building a clientele, rather than building the foundation of a successful business.
    Thanks for always writing useful and interesting content that I can implement immediately with my own hobby/business!

  179. Sherri on June 12, 2013 at 12:43 am

    Hi, Sherri here, from Grande Prairie AB, Canada, I love doing scenic and nature shots but i have done portraits and weddings, I love photography but no plans for a business of just photography, I incorporate it into my “crafting” business.

  180. Fritz A. Kolmerten on June 12, 2013 at 5:21 am

    I live in Zionsville, Indiana. I retired last summer from 27 years of teaching Severely Emotionally Handicapped and Autistic individuals. I currently work for Amazon and have been a photographer for the last 7 years. I prefer to shoot things that do not talk back (not a big people person). My love are very old barns, houses and other abandoned structures. I don’t have a business but would like to start one (probably need a front person to handle business aspects). My goal at this time is to establish a website.

  181. faith bell on June 12, 2013 at 6:33 pm

    hello everybody!
    i hope i’m not too late to the de-lurking party…i’m a speech-language pathologist working in a NJ school system and i’m slowly working towards getting my photog business up and running (although i have many days where i wonder if i have any shot at it). i’m a married mom of 2 girls, originally from MA and i love to sing, act and create! i love your blog because it’s the business side of things i struggle with most. that and the lack of $$$. so, although it’s been a bit of a struggle, i do enjoy my work over at and it makes me happy, so i think i’ll keep at it for a while….

  182. Brooke G. on June 12, 2013 at 7:53 pm


    I de-lurked last year, but I don’t think I’ve commented since then. Oops! I do enjoy reading your posts, though!

    My name is Brooke, and I’m in KS.

    I love shooting babies, families and couples, and I am still working on starting my business. I think that was my answer last time, too. 🙂 I just recently had a baby in March, so have put things on hold for a few months, but am just getting back into the swing of things shooting a few sessions here and there.

    My biggest goal right now is to get my website re-vamped, and a Facebook page set up. I am still trying to figure out how to juggle life with a newborn and working full time, so I don’t have as much time for a photography business as I used to, but I still want to pursue it, and hopefully I can eventually quit the full time desk job and stay home with my girl. 🙂

    Thanks for your great insight, keep the good posts coming! 🙂

  183. Janelle on June 12, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    Hi. It’s me. You know me. I’m not a lurker. But to answer your de-lurking questions…

    1) I’m Janelle Nutter, and I live just outside of Cleveland, OH.
    2) I shoot portraits right now, but really enjoy fine art. I don’t *technically* have a business yet, but that brings me to #3.
    3) My most immediate goal that I’m working toward right now is gathering the money to meet with an attorney friend of mine to actually register as a business, so I can be legit!

  184. Morgan Coombs on June 12, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Hi Jenika! I live in New Albany, MS. I am a full time ER nurse and part time/ full time photographer. I have a small studio in my home and also shoot outdoors as well. I shoot Canon, and I mostly shoot babies and kids. I have been in business for 2 years, and my biggest goal right now is to be able to quit my day job and play with pictures all day 😉

  185. Lara on June 12, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    Hi, I’m Lara Luz, a wedding photographer working out of Melbourne Australia.

    I’m working hard to hit my target average so that I can switch to full time photography (I’m a video editor when I’m not taking photo’s).

  186. Natalie on June 13, 2013 at 3:07 am

    Hello 🙂

    1) I’m Natalie & I live in West Chester, Pennsylvania {a nice ‘lil suburb of Philadelphia}

    2) I shoot everything – weddings, engagements, family sessions – you name it, I shoot it!

    3) I hope to be more confident in my pricing and in my shooting!

  187. Colleen on June 14, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    Well, I’m a bit late to the De-Lurking party, but here goes anyway!

    1) Colleen Tappel – Columbus, Ohio

    2) I shoot portraits, specializing in costumes. I am currently working on running a full time freelance business. It’s certainly a challenge, but at least I’m not bored!

    3) Biggest challenge – Building a sustainable business without breaking the bank or going crazy from stress.

  188. Sarah on June 15, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    My name is Sarah, and I am from South Dakota. I started Virgosplash Photograhy at age 19. Now that I am older and have educated myself more I am currently working hard to rebrand and market more toward my target market, high school seniors. Thank you for the chance to de-lurk! (;

  189. Dave on June 17, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    Hey… I Dave from Sydney, Australia. I’ve been a photographer all my life, and in business as a photographer for 12 years. I have a sister studying psychology and I’m super-interested as well, so you can imagine, your blog absolutely sits so well with where I’m at in life and in business! Thank you!

    I have a Wedding Photography + Family portrait business that I run with my wife Naomi. We often shoot together at weddings, and Naomi does all our family portrait work.

    I also do commercial portraiture and product work, as well as some commercial video and timelapse stuff.

    My real goal at the moment is to allow myself time to take photographs for me.

  190. Jessica Works on June 17, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    I live in Northeast Alabama. I have always loved photography and always taken pictures of whatever people will pay me to do. I have (nearly) decided to specialize in senior photography. I’m hoping to attend some workshops and get better at shooting AND running a business.

  191. Kate Whitmore on June 18, 2013 at 12:41 am

    I’m just catching up on Feedly so I’m definitely behind on this one. How fun is this though? I’m Kate Whitmore, full-time photographer in Nashville, TN. I also serve as Preveal’s Queen of Customer Support. Currently I’m working on marketing my business to a newer client base than what I’ve catered to in the past after recently switching from shooting-and-burning to sales sessions. Woot woot! Never looking back on that one! 🙂

  192. Ania on June 21, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    My name is Ania and currently I’m residing in Sachse, Tx. I travel a lot for longer periods of time around the States and sometimes oversees. I’m starting my own pet photography business, which is very challenging since I don’t have fixed address.

    Thanks for all the great advice you are sharing with us. I love reading it.

  193. RavishJames on June 27, 2013 at 5:43 am

    Hi, I am Ravish from Bengaluru, India. I am an amature photographer, who is learing photography and trying to use the lessons that I have learnt to take best pictures using my Nokia 808 phone. I have made a promise to myself to build a photo collection that will comprise of a wide variety of photos taken using Nokia 808. I simply want to prove that Mobile phones like Nokia 808 can be used to take good snaps.

  194. Amanda on June 30, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    Hi, my name is Amanda, and I’m only half of the team over at Sean Purcell Photography. I’ve been following your site religiously for quite some time now. Our business has been in the beginning stages for awhile now, and your site has been super helpful in preparing us to really get going. We’re both spread out at the moment, but are re-locating to the Northern Virginia/Washington DC area this fall. Thanks so much for this awesome idea! 🙂

  195. Laura Cottril on July 3, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    Hi, I’m Laura Cottril. I specialize in connecting with my clients emotionally and telling their stories through photography. Children and families are my focus, although I am stirring my creative pot by moving into Storybook portraiture and now Vintage Portraits. I especially enjoy the expanded creative process, having a new genre for using my current skills and growing into a new market to create unique and exciting work.

    My biggest goal right now is to create awareness and value around my new work and develop an active pipeline to fill my schedule.

    Thank you for your gift of educating in a unique and substantive way! 🙂

  196. Sarah on October 25, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    1) I’m Sarah and I just moved to NYC

    2) My step-dad (A semi-pro wildlife and underwater photographer)gave me my first DSLR (a Pentax K10D) in 2006, and I’ve been seriously hooked ever since. I now shoot with two Pentax K5-II. I’m in the process of started my own business, getting ready to submit all the forms to make it legal.

    3) The two big goals right now are to get the business on it’s feel, and from there to start gaining some more wedding and portrait business. I’m working a lot on SEO, so getting hired by someone who found me through a web search is a pretty significant goal right now.

  197. Brian Mullins on January 4, 2021 at 12:08 am

    I’ll bet I win the prize for the longest de-lurker. 🙂 I’m Brian Mullins and have been a wedding & commercial photographer since 2005.

    My goals right now are:
    -Surviving 2020 (check)
    – Looking forward into 2021 without any of the 2020 baggage.

    Thank you for all of the work you put into this blog. I always joke with my clients that photography is 50% psychology so when I came across your website I felt emboldened that I wasnt lying. 😉

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