Almost two years ago I took my newly started wedding photography business to a full time status. Quitting my full time job was more than a business decision, it was a very calculated move/risk we made together as a family. Our daughter was just over a year old and I was already a stay home dad half of the week days till my wife would come home from her job. Before I left my full time job my days were being divided into running my business, my full time job and my family. Although I was able to manage it all I found myself not pursuing my dream to its fullest which was photography and spending time with my beautiful family. It had became obvious that I had to take a leap of faith, so I did.

After going full time growing my photography business became the number one priority. Previously, shooting my weddings on the weekends and even editing them during the week was never an issue with the time I had. The term “weekend warrior” comes from this lifestyle; its refer to someone with a regular weekday job who shots weddings on the weekends to bring some extra money or pursue their passion on the side. The real challenge for me was everything else that needs to be done to run a successful business; Branding, marketing, public relations and networking which was the toughest one for me.

Although I had started to network a bit I had not really committed myself to build up relationships with others in the wedding industry. In the last couple of months I decided to really change that. For some time I had been wanting to create my own group composed of a few photographers that shared the same vision, passion for photography and encounter similar challenges as I did. A couple of months ago I finally found the courage to reach out to the community over social media to see if there were others interested in joining me in this venture. A couple of photographers and myself ended up hooking up over some coffee and found ourselves having a whole lot in common. So, we started a creative group that we simply refer to as “The Collective” for now. Our primary focus is to grow as creatives but it has turn into much more than that. We are encouraging each other as a group and also each other’s businesses. We are pushing each other to attend more social events and we constantly share ideas to grow our brands, connect with others in our industry and even SEO techniques. But most importantly we have created a sense of community for each other. We are still new friends and we are still learning and getting to know each other as well as a collective. But, in just over a month since we had that first meeting we have build a partnership that goes beyond the business.

The wedding industry its one of the most competitive in the world. Many who hate their current jobs are picking up their cameras or any other medium, skill or passions they have and are beginning to pursue their long dormant dream. Some become weekend warriors, others become full time but regardless we all dream the same dream. The dream of independence, the dream of freedom of time to spent with loved ones. The dream of being a creative and doing something we love.

I say dream, and dream BIG. Why not. After all, the American dream has changed from chasing that outdated Wall Street dream that  built an empire for retiring rich even at the risk of your integrity. The American dream  has now switched to pursuing A dream, your dream! The dream to do what you love and becoming an entrepreneur. Even if it comes at the cost of very long days, no weekends off, heartbreaks and disappointments, struggles and the fear of failing big time and having to go back to the work force. But I say dream and dream BIG. The American dream is here and its more alive and real than ever. So join some friends that share your passion, get out of your comfort zone and even though it may be awkward at first you will one day turn your head and find yourself amongst friends who will support you and encourage you as you do them.

Check out my good friends work below

 

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Hector and Christina are a husband a wife team and together they are 33andathird

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the two above are Rudy and Marta also a husband and wife team check em out at RudyandMarta

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and last but definitely not least my good friend for a couple of years now Claire Pacelli with ClairePacelli

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  1. ACME BRAND STUDIO NON-CORPORATE CORPORATE SHOOT | Orlando Wedding Photography | Fine Art Wedding Photographer   (May 29, 2014 )  :  

    […] ACME Brand Studio is a creative collaboration between Shannon Hallare , Sean Brunson and Tim Fisher who worked together for years and decided to venture out to start a company that shared their passion for branding and for life. Their goal is to connect with their clients and with each other. To pursue the work they love doing and to have the freedom to enjoy life and the work they create. Basically, The New American Dream! […]

  2. Rudy   (May 23, 2014 )  :  

    Definitely had a blast. Good things to come. Our photography businesses will bloom and grow.

For a long time I had the idea to create a series of interviews that would feature wedding vendors. The wanted to get to know them similarly in the same way I try to get to know my couples. To get to know them for more that just vendors but to learn a little more in depth of who they possible can be as people who just happen to work in the wedding industry, and to hopefully in the process make some new friends.

The plan/process was simple, I would meet with them and do a photo session with them, let them have some fun in front of the camera. Then I would send them a series of questions in interview format. The questions would range from anything business related, personal to completely random (fun) questions. This is just the way I like my conversations with people.

So, I hope you enjoy this very first installment of my interview series. I hope it becomes a common thing on my blog. That is if there are others out there who are interested. hint hint!

For those who do not know here I like to introduce the beautiful and talented Mary Angelini. Mary is a film maker and cinematographer who happens to tell wedding stories.
Mary has been featured on Style Me Pretty and Every Last Detail‘s wedding blogs.
Her website is Key Moments Films
Also follow her on Facebook

Fun Fact; I hire Mary to create a video commercial for my new website. The commercial will be featured on the home page of my site. With the goal in mind to introduce me to anyone new to my site and to let them in a little into my style and approach to my work, my vision and a little of my personality as soon as they enter my site. I am excited to sharing that with you soon.

Well, with out further delay here it goes…

Tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a wife, a mother to two adorable dogs and a Wedding Cinematographer.

What is your least favorite word?

I hate it when people mean to say ‘ask’ but really say ‘axe’.

Something you’re grateful for?

I am so grateful to be alive. I know that may seam cliche, but especially around birthdays, it reminds me of the friends I have lost along the way. How they didn’t get to achieve the milestones that most of us get to accomplish. I remind myself this especially when I get down about turning another year older.

What advice would you give to cinematographers who aspire to make the jump from hobbyists to full-time, professional cinematography?

Shadow or assist a pro. So may people make the mistake of just jumping right in and they do it alone; they have to make mistakes that could have easily been avoided if they just had a mentor.

What are you still looking forward to achieving in your cinematography career? Aside from consistently pushing myself, I would love to be the leader in the industry, sharing what has worked for me to help boost other’s businesses.

Coffee or Chocolate?

Chocolate- no question.

What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?

I’d love to run a bed and breakfast in the Bahamas or a remote adventure destination resort.

Something you’re still learning?

I am focusing on mastering the art of time management, specifically between my personal and professional life. I’d really like to set up my life so that I can have children, without compromising my career.

What turns you off?

Rotting teeth and people who flash their money.

What’s your favorite camera and lens?

The Canon 7D and the 50mm 1.4 is hands down my favorite.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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