A Year of Growth!
New clients, new spaces and new partnerships!
Leaving 2022 I felt like I had a plan in place for what I wanted to do and what I wanted to accomplish, but for some reason I feel like it just fell by the wayside. I was going to be more present on social media and be consistent with blog posts, but somehow I feel like I blinked and the year was almost half over and none of that happened. That's not to say I didn't (somehow) accomplish a lot during the year, but I can't really pinpoint any one reason why any of it materialized.
My Yearly Recap:
Events Covered: 9
Portrait Sessions: 364
Sports Matches: 72
Days Worked: 156
Total Photos Taken: 164,241
The first few months of the year were pretty slow for me, which has been the case ever since I started. I had a few sessions here and there, but overall it was a pretty mellow last half of winter (which seemed to drag on longer than it needed to...). Thankfully this gave me the opportunity to work on new ideas for spring sports and my partnership with Rosemount Lacrosse. I had some great opportunities to cover some state meets at Farmington High School for gymnastics and wrestling, both of which were new experiences for me and taught me some new techniques and ways of shooting I hadn't dealt with before.
Spring finally came and another fun opportunity presented itself in the form of covering a professional women's football game for the Minnesota Vixen. I covered the home opener for the team and was absolutely blown away by how the Vixen dominated their opponent and how one sided the whole contest seemed, but it was also easy to see why they were the defending champs of the league. With spring comes one of my favorite sports to cover and the fastest sport on two legs...lacrosse! This was my second season with Rosemount boys lacrosse and after multiple learning opportunities the past season and some new lenses I was excited to try a few new ideas for the coming season. The team had a great season with some nail-biters both ways, but ultimately fell short of their goal in the playoffs. I began a great new relationship with another department at the University of Minnesota late in the spring which ended up being about a half dozen events throughout the year which presented some great opportunities and new networking opportunities. Spring closed out with some great high school baseball games and a handful of youth matches all over the metro.
As we closed in on summer, a new opportunity presented itself in the form of a partnership with Rosemount's youth lacrosse program. We agreed to terms on covering a game for both boys and girls at each age level over the course of the season and I immediately got to work. While I had a ton of fun covering these games and seeing the various levels of talent, I never was able to decide if the parents or the kids got more excited about the photos. While the youth season was in full swing and the school year was winding down, senior season was just about to kick off! While families has always been my "bread and butter", senior sessions are rapidly becoming more frequent which has allowed me to try new ideas and locations to provide the best experiences possible for these milestone events for students and their parents.
Heading into fall, inarguably the busiest time of year for most photographers, I had a lot on my plate. With football and soccer season rapidly approaching, I was also in talks with a local high school to become a premier sponsor for the school year and help cover various matches throughout the school year. I was given an incredible opportunity to shoot a Gopher football game, which was my first major sporting event opportunity I'd ever had and a dream come true to shoot a B1G game (even if it was a non-conference game). I had an incredible time, got some great shots and learned a few things along the way too! I continued my relationship with the Tigers football program and also picked up a partial coverage deal with the girls soccer program. To top that all off, it's family photo season as soon as the leaves turn colors in the Midwest, so I was home maybe one night a week from August into November.
As the fall work came to a close, we were left in a weird limbo of fall being over but winter not really coming. From Thanksgiving to New Year's Eve everything was a bit of a blur with a two week spurt of our entire house having COVID for a little extra excitement. There were a few last minute families and seniors sprinkled in to close out the year, but thankfully it was more or less calmer to close out the year.
In trying to not let 2023 repeat again and let all my best laid plans go to waste, I began planning for 2024 and taking steps hold myself accountable. After nearly doubling the business in 2023, I'm hopeful I can accomplish measurable growth in 2024 and stick to a plan to both grow the business and my skillset to meet more new clients across all avenues. In an effort to not make this post drag on and on I think I'll just cut it off here, but check back in later posts for some new ideas I'm working on and some session ideas I'd like to try in the coming year as well!
Currently Listening To: Something Good by Ollie Joseph