P52 - Final Week- 2013 in Review

Thursday, January 2, 2014


Here we are in 2014 and I'm just getting to my final post for P52 for 2013. Ah, such is life these days. When I started this project last year, I was busy. But, I had NO idea how much busier life would become. Starting a business is no easy task. Building a business the first year is all consuming. This year will be my second in business and I will focus on growing my client base while upping my game. I can assume it will take just as much of my time each week. While I hope to streamline some aspects of the day to day admin tasks, as well as my editing process, I am pretty sure I will still be up to my eyeballs in work. At least, I hope so, because we really need the income. But, I do have high hopes of refining my style, improving my craft and simplifying the process from client contact to product delivery.

By the end of this holiday portrait season, I was exhausted and burned out. The holidays passed in a blur, with little break for me. I only took a day and a half on Christmas Eve & Christmas. I have made many sacrifices over the past year, buy sacrificing time with my family is my least favorite. It is all a learning process though, and I am so very thankful for all of my family, friends and clients who have supported my efforts over the past year. One day at a time, I will keep climbing.

 Last year my inspiration word was focus. I focused on improving my photography and building my business. I did see major leaps in the quality of my work, and I was able to book 69 clients and three weddings. Though my first business license was purchased in Nov 2012, I really didn't get a paid gig until late May 2013, so that accounts for about 7 months of shooting. I am humbled and grateful that so many people would entrust me with their memories.

 I have decided that my word for 2014 will be reach. I want to push myself harder and reach further. To shoot with greater intention. To stretch myself creatively and really produce work that I love. Sometimes the business of running a business makes it difficult to really take the time to work on shooting the way I would like to. But, having so many new faces, personalities and locations in front of my camera has forced me to grow and learn on the fly. In 2014, I would like to take a step back and be more thoughtful and precise as I shoot. I also hope to dedicate some time to workshops and port folio reviews for critique. So reach is my word. If 2013 was the year of "on my way" and "almost", I want 2014 to be the year of "I am Gumby" and "nailed it!"

Thank you 2013 for all you have taught me. It was a year of struggle, sacrifice and growth. And a year of gratitude and learning to lean on others a little more because I simply couldn't do it all myself. Here's to a new year! 2014 I know you will be filled with hard work and smothered in awesomesauce and I can't wait to meet the challenge.

On a personal note, I wish I had a better grasp on balance between work, family life, homeschooling and personal projects. My time with family suffered this year, as did my blog. I will strive to find better balance in 2014. I am filled with gratitude for all who have stood by me and cheered me on throughout 2013. I know I have neglected you and I am truly sorry. My parents, sisters, in laws and most especially my husband have been so helpful and generous that I simply can't thank them enough.  And to my friends: several of you have gone out of your way to visit, email, message, connect with and support me. From the bottom of my heart I thank you!! It truly means so very much to me and I love you dearly. You know who you are and I send you a giant hug and my heartfelt thanks! ;)

As a review of 2013, I put together a few of my favorite instagram moments from the past year, since I tend to take more photos of my family with my phone these days. So many great memories captured! <3 p="">



Whew! I did it. I finished P52 by the skin of my teeth. I am so grateful to all who participated and gave me the push to do it, and especially to our lovely hostesses Gina and Tamar!
Tamar SB said...

What a year you've had. Here's to only success and growth in 2014!!

Kimberly Vensel said...

Love your review collages! Congratulations on such a successful 2013! And best wishes for more success in the years to come!

Kim said...

Wow! I'm truly impressed. 69 shoots and 3 weddings in 7 months? Melissa, that is amazing. I know you are worn out, but you have hustle! Way to go!

smiles, Sharon said...

Congratulations on all you have accomplished. I have walked in similar shoes to you, and it is just plain difficult and exhausting. One just has to keep the passion alive to make it worth all the effort and time.
The best to you in the next year...may it be easier.

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