I’ve had this little blog of mine waaaay back since 2007. I started it way back then to document not only my photography journey, but my life in raising our three girls. Sooo much has changed in the 13 years I’ve been documenting my photography here.
About a year ago, I decided to take this little photography business of mine that had only been a little side hustle hobby and really invest my time and energy into it. Now that my kids are “mostly” grown (we still have one teenage girl at home!), I can devote much more time into pursuing MY goals and dreams. This year has been a huge investment into that and now that 2020 has rolled around, I’m starting to see all that investment I made into myself and my business really starting to pay off! One of the best things that I did last year was switch my website to Show It. That alone I feel was the number one best thing I did for my photography business. Almost ALL of the big name leaders in the photography industry right now are either using Show It or are connected with them somehow.
Not only is Show It an industry leader for drag and drop website building that help you book your ideal client, but they are truly a community of loving, welcoming, warm, real, hilarious photographers and other creatives. These people DO LIFE together. They share all the stuff, the stuff that actually makes up living, not just how to MAKE a living. They are God-loving, selfless, community builders who fully support loving, encouraging, and building up other photographers.
Through them I’ve also discovered a local group of creatives in the nation-wide community of The Rising Tide Society (through Honeybook – which is also a MUST have for photographers!). Show It United is an annual conference designed to transform your photography business and your life! I would say that is exactly what it did.
Here is my experience at my very first Show It United Conference at Marriott Phoenix Resort Tempe at the Buttes!
The very first night there was a Welcome Party and Dinner where I happened to run into Lauren Fair. Seriously. I couldn’t even believe it. I was chatting with a new friend I had just met and we both spotted her and looked at each other and say “Is that…. Lauren Fair?” of which Lauren Fair happened to be looking directly at us and TOTALLY saw us freak out. HA! So of course we all had a good laugh, chatted about her fabulousness and then took a few selfies.
Show It United is an incredible learning resource jam packed with teaching sessions, workshops, gorgeous styled shoots (I’ll share those in another blog post!), but my biggest take away was hearing from, learning alongside, and just hanging out and chatting with the industry leaders.
I have to admit, the two people that have been the biggest encouragement and taught me the MOST not only about running a photography business, but how to balance life, marriage, parenting – all of it! Amy and Jordan Demos. Love Your Photos, Grow Your Business, Change Your Life. These two are so inspiring, and no joke – I could probably be their MOTHER. Y’all, I’m kind of old. Really old to be at the beginning of kick starting my career. BUT I chose to be a full time mommy for two decades, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. These pictures up above – you just don’t understand how excited I was to finally be a part of a Demos Sandwich (only true fans will get it!). And Jordan – he seriously needs to run for president one day.
(PSA – Pardon my less than stellar I-phone photos here, but I was in full on complete fan girl mode. Like a giddy teenager. 🙂
The next most influential photographer I have learned from recently is Katelyn James. And when you are TWINNING with Katelyn James at an 80’s Night Themed Party, you win in all of life. And also – girls who had really big hair in the 80’s NEVER lose that hair quaffing ability, that is all.
Not only is Katelyn an incredible photographer who runs a wildly successful photography and education business, she is an incredible human being. Her teaching sessions at Show It were the most memorable for me. She has such a gift for sharing her story and making every horrible painful life moment something to cherish and embrace. She taught me how to take those most painful life experiences and fully live in those moments, feel the pain and use it to not only shape who you are becoming, but to pour into everyone around you. The past three years in my life have been some of the HARDEST I have ever lived. Oddly, they have also been some of the most fulfilling because it’s in the hardest times that we can allow ourselves to grow the most.
Katelyn has helped me see that all the horribly painful things I’ve been through lately are actually a beautiful blessing. They are allowing me to create a life doing what I love the very most, and loving and serving people in a way that only I can – with my story, my abilities and my life experience. It truly is a beautiful thing to discover.
Soooo many insanely talented photographers that also happen to be incredible human beings together in one place! That is Show It United. It was such an incredible opportunity to learn right alongside these industry leaders, have real face to face conversations with them, chat over lunch and ask the really hard questions. They are all an open book and want nothing more than to help other creatives thrive in their own businesses. If only the entire world could learn a thing or two from the Show It Community, the world would be a much more beautiful place. This beautiful person is none other than Julie Paisley – seriously – click the link and go check out her work. I’ll wait.
Every single time I jumped in the elevator, I had a little freak out fan girl moment because there was always someone I looked up to and admired. I have been a loooooong time fan of Anchor & Veil Photography It was so incredible to learn so many different perspectives and ideas and mindsets all with the same goal in mind. Not only taking incredible images, but to love and serve your clients so well that the experience is even better than the product.
One of the BEST parts about attending Show It United, is all the other talented photographers that you get to meet! Ruby Sandoval is one of those new friends! She and I were casually sitting at lunch one day when I look up and see who else but JENNA KUTCHER!! What the actual????? She wasn’t a scheduled speaker at Show It, but just happened to be in town and is such good friends with so many of these fabulous photographers that she just stopped by to say hello! I almost fell out of my chair. Here’s a secret – I am addicted to my daily bubble baths and I listen to Jenna’s ‘The Goal Digger’ podcasts every day during bath time. There I said it! HA!! We were all passing our phones around while totally freaking out and snapping pics of each other with the fabulous Jenna Kutcher. Seriously one of the most inspiring people I know. And check out that side eye her little baby Conley is giving me – she was like “who the heck are you?”.
Ruby and I created our own little version of the Demos Sandwich with Jordan!
The ever fabulous James and Jess!
Some really talented photographer friends that I met. This was from the formal night which I highly recommend!
These very colorful people are the creators and founders of Show It! Todd Watson and his very funny wife Elisa – love her!
(Also – don’t ask – when photographers must be photographed at a formal event, very interesting and odd things happen!) 🙂
I actually had the pleasure to meet and work with this insanely talented lady this past summer at an editorial shoot that we did together. Now I consider her a very sweet friend! Another website you just HAVE to take a moment to enjoy – absolutely love her style and her smiley bubbly personality. The fabulous Cassi Claire.
Also – have you noticed that every one of these incredible websites is a Show It Website? Just a little tip. You’re welcome. 🙂
Show It United has changed the trajectory of not only my business, but my life. I see my little photography gig as more of a ministry than a business. I’m so proud to be part of a new movement within the photography industry. 13 years ago I reached out to a few local photographers at the time and was met with sneering, competitive, jealous women who were only in it for themselves and told me I was bringing the entire industry down. I withdrew from fellow photogs for a long time because of it. I took a chance, got outside my comfort zone, did a lot of praying about the next chapter of my life, and decided to use the gifts that God gave me and I’m so thankful that I did. I’m SO happy to be part of a RISING TIDE within the industry.
We love, we share, we give, and you can sit with us.
A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats
Until next time Show It United!
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