It is with mixed emotions that I write to tell you all that I am no longer accepting new bookings. My husband and I are moving to Maryland this spring to be closer to his job, and after many sleepless nights tossing and turning, going over different scenarios of what to do with my business and whether to re-start it in Maryland, I’ve decided that I will not be re-establishing my business there in the near future.
This decision was not an easy one. As I pored over all of my options, I couldn’t help but be reminded (déjà vu!) of the decision to pursue a photography career in the first place. It was the most difficult decision I’ve ever had to make – leaving a secure job that provided me a lot of growth and promotion potential to begin something I had no experience in at all! Looking back, I’m more shocked now than ever that I actually went through with it! And I’m glad that I did. I surprised myself in ways I didn’t know possible. I’ve run a successful business and have had many happy clients along the way, who have graciously invited me into their homes – their families – at some of the most important times of their lives. I’ve so much enjoyed watching clients’ children grow up over the past few years. I have loved more than anything that I’ve had many repeat clients. Their continued trust in me to capture special points in their lives was reassurance that all I’ve worked for was paying off.
But I’ve found that the decision to “shut down” my business is probably even more difficult than the choice to open one in the first place! There are so many factors involved, but the most important one has to do with spending time with my husband. Over the past few years, I found that with his demanding work schedule (and very long commute!) during the week, and my need to be available to clients in the evenings and on weekends for meetings and sessions, it was difficult at many points to find time to spend together! And so with our move, I’ve had the chance to take a step back and re-assess my business and where I saw it going in the future. I did not feel, with the added distance (and many added costs associated with the added distance!), that I would be able to continue to accept new bookings in Virginia without having to increase my fees significantly. All of those additional charges would go only towards covering added costs, and would in no way increase profitability, which is not ideal for business growth. And I was not prepared to start fresh with my business in a totally new area, nor to have a gap in income in the time it would take to market/promote/grow my business there for future work.
So with our move come many changes and transitions! And although this has been such a difficult decision, I am totally at peace with my choices and excited for what the future will bring.
I am thrilled to share the news that I’ve accepted a position with The Cisco Center in Severna Park, MD. I will be working with young children with special needs beginning tomorrow. This is work I enjoyed as a volunteer (at a similar school in North Carolina) during college, but hadn’t had the opportunity to pursue again until now. I am really looking forward to everything about this opportunity! I will undoubtedly be challenged every day to find new and creative ways to help these children embrace their full potential, but with those challenges comes great satisfaction when you see the kids achieving their goals. This is something I remember from my time volunteering in college. It’s very fulfilling work, and I’m happy to be moving on to another job that I know I will enjoy in so many ways, just as I have with my photography business the past few years.
Finally, I want to sincerely thank all of my past clients. I can’t put into words how grateful I am to you for your business. You helped make my dream a reality, and without you, this decision would not have been as difficult to make. I truly do cherish the time we spent working together and I hope that you will all stay in touch. If you are in need of a photographer in the future, I am happy to provide you with a couple fantastic options.
I wish you all the very best in 2013 and beyond!
Thank you again so much for your business and support over the past few years,