Wow 2011. Way to bring it.
Seriously, 2011 has rocked. Its been the year that I’ve started to see things truly flourish and there’s nothing quite as exciting as feeling the joy of your hard work paying off. This has reinforced to me that setting goals for myself is crucial to my success. Its not even a question really. I have to do it. It holds me accountable. It puts the success or failure of my business squarely on my shoulders. And I hate pressure. I complain about it. But boy oh boy, do I work well under it. 😉
This year was hard for me in many ways too. I was busier than previous years, which is WONDERFUL but also challenging when it comes to the family/work balance. Another challenge came in the form of a local individual who had attempted to replicate something I had done for my business. That situation alone provided months of frustration while I dealt with their never-ending wrath after standing up for myself. I am thankful though. During some of my hardest moments and most challenging of situations of 2011, I had support from so many wonderful friends and colleagues. I learned a lot about myself, my industry, my friendships and I have come out feeling so much stronger. So come to think of it, maybe the bad isn’t all that bad after all! 😉
Some of highlights and reached goals of my year include:
~ Having my work published in print. This ended up happening for me in more than one instance this year. I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to shoot semi-regularly for Ottawa Parenting Times Magazine. I have also had the opportunity to be featured in Ottawa Citizen‘s ‘The Wrap’ newspaper and last but certainly not least, I’ve also had my work featured in PAWSH Magazine. This is VERY cool for me. I was hoping for at least one opportunity. I’m thankful to have been given so much more than that.
~ Being offered the fabulous opportunity to write a little series of articles for The Dedicated Photographer, which is a fantastic resource for the professional photographer. Bookmark it photographer friends!
~ Working commercially. Again, my mind was blown when I was contacted by the Canadian Red Cross for a shoot that involved producing images for a nation-wide campaign. My images were featured very extensively in all Canadian Walmart stores. And as if that wasn’t enough, one of the models I used for this campaign was my own daughter. A proud photographer moment AND a proud Mama moment!
~ Joining and being accepted by not one, but two highly respected professional photography associations. I’m SUPER proud to say that I became a member of WPPI (Wedding and Portrait Photographers International) and also the NAPCP (National Association of Professional Child Photographers). To have such highly respected organizations backing me was kind of a big deal. I look forward to working towards becoming a part of more associations in the future.
~ Winning an image award. WINNING AN IMAGE AWARD. Ya….that took a while to sink in for me too. Much to my surprise and delight, one of my images placed 3rd in the Tweens age category of the July 2011 image competition with the NAPCP. I know its totally cliche to say, but it was truly a dream come true for me. In fact, it took me COMPLETELY by surprise! But when the results were in and I saw my name up there with the other handful of winners, there I was. Placing amongst some of the most well respected photographers in Child and Family Photography and chosen out of potentially thousands of images. WOW. If that isn’t motivating me to rock 2012, I don’t know what will!!!
2012 will have its work cut out for it, that’s for sure! But as I continue to work towards my goals I am reminded that its not about how many props I buy or how many sessions I shoot. What’s important is loving what I do. Its discovering myself through my art. Its connecting with people authentically. Its nurturing the unique qualities that I bring to the table as an artist. Its the ever evolving skill that motivates me to do what I do and its my wonderful clients who trust me with their family memories. I am so very excited to see what’s in store for 2012!!! I also look forward to meeting those of you who I will have the pleasure of working with. 🙂
Much love, health and happiness for 2012 everyone! I want to leave you with you a slideshow of just a small number of my favorite images from this year. Enjoy! 🙂