Burnout, Failure, & Reconstruction

Hi friends. Hang onto your hats, I’m going to get pretty personal for a minute, and follow it up with a few promises on what you can expect moving forward when you hire me as your photographer.

A photo from March at my son’s 4th birthday party. He’s the one falling on the trampoline.

A photo from March at my son’s 4th birthday party. He’s the one falling on the trampoline.

I know it’s been a while. To say my life has been turned upside down since re-launching my business would be an understatement. My family has experienced an immense amount of unexpected shift and change since January. Everyone is safe and personally I am mostly ok. I’m certainly doing a lot better now than I was a few months ago. That’s not really what I’m here to chat about, but it plays a big part into where my brain has been recently, and I figured you should know.

What I’m here to talk about is summed up pretty well in the title of this post.

Burnout.

Failure.

Reconstruction.

In the summer of 2018, I was not in the best place. I was working full time in an environment that drained me more than I had ever experienced, and was feeling trapped and a bit hopeless. I started picking apart my life to find places that I could continue to grow outside of that world, and kept coming back to photography. That’s when I began to look at my photography business from the ground up — what I loved about it, what I didn’t love about it. A few of my previous blog posts really hit on those subjects, and why I shifted my business.

I was maybe a little overzealous, and I do tend to jump in with both feet on projects like this.

I dug deep, did research, got feedback from my very cherished customers, and worked countless nights through my busy season (fall) to make sure I was ready to launch in January 2019. I hit the launch button and felt so proud, and so excited, and so ready. In the process of doing this, I burned the candle at both ends for a bit too long and burned myself out.

I re-launched, and fell flat on my face.

Crickets.

A classic expectations vs reality scenario. It seemed that my customers weren’t fully connecting with where I had landed.

I felt defeated. I left my camera in the bag for most of January - March. My spark dissipated for a little while.

Just when I thought I had gotten it right, I realized had maybe taken things a little too far off course and missed reaching my favorite customers.

I started to look at it in a different light and knew I was onto something with this original thought. I just needed to make a few tweaks to get it right. I’ve picked myself up, re-centered, taken a second look, and have begun to reconstruct based on what I’ve been learning about myself and my customers.

I started started simple. Back to Basics. Here’s where I landed..

hankins_spring_19-165.jpg

Alisha Skeel Photography - “Putting the “Life” back into Lifestyle Photography.”

I am dedicating myself to focusing in on you and your story. Not worrying too much about fitting into someone else’s box or expectations, and just channeling the way that I do photography best - through observation, genuine interest and interactions, and by coaxing out and channeling the magic you already possess.

So what I have to offer to you today are my promises to you as your photographer:

  • I will be empathetic, thoughtful, and get to know you as a person to make you as comfortable as possible during our session. My hope is that we’ll feel like old friends. Heck, sometimes we might actually be or become old friends!

  • Once you are comfortable, I will work to unlock genuine moments of connection without forcing it. I’ll encourage silliness, play, laughter, and tenderness. When you see the photos, I want them to feel uniquely YOU.

  • I will work to remain as objective as possible to tell the story of your family just as you are.

  • I will always, always do my best to go over and above for you.

  • I will capture every single moment of magic that appears when I am photographing your family.

  • I will build out transparent and fair pricing (a future blog post) that keeps my services accessible to my best customers, but also appropriately reflects the amount of time, expertise, training, and care that I put into each session.

  • I will direct you to my favorite vendors who will give you the best quality possible if you would like your photos printed.

  • I will always, ALWAYS give you every photo in your gallery. I love all of the images I send to you, and I want you to have access to them too.

I’m working to give myself a lot of grace during this season of life. Things don’t always go as planned, and I appreciate your patience and understanding as I work through these shifts and changes. Stay tuned for a slight website update and adjusted session pricing.

Thank you for your loyalty and constant support. I love each and every one of you.

- Alisha