When I decided to transition, I was worried about what other photographers would think including my past clients and even my grandmother if I offered these type of sessions. My grandma is now in my private Facebook group btw. She enjoys seeing me change the lives of the women I work with.
I was going through questions prior to a live q+a and this photographer’s struggle jumped out at me. So, let’s talk about it. The struggle was “having the confidence to pursue boudoir photography.” It made me reflect on the in between time of going from photographing everything portrait to taking the wheel and making a detour on my photography business.
I’m sharing this with you to show you how I did it, because I wasn’t confident. What do we do when we have an idea we’re thinking about pursuing that we’re not confident in yet? We run it with our friends, family, and colleagues.
When I shared that I wanted to stop photographing, quite literally, ALL of the the sessions and niche down to black and white boudoir, I wasn’t getting the results I was hoping for when I presented my idea. I met with someone in my networking group thinking they would be all on board. This person happens to be a man and by no means in the photography industry. (Just to give you some context.) When I shared my dream with him his response was, “There’s not a market for that, no way! You’re pigeon holing yourself.” I could tell that he didn’t exactly get it. Of course he couldn’t understand my vision because it was something that wasn’t for him or that he could ever understand how women would value such a powerful niche.
The others I shared it with seemed excited, but didn’t fully understand. I said, “That’s ok! I’ll show you!” It’s not necessarily a bad thing when people don’t understand your vision or your pricing for that matter. You have to show them the value.
The more you get out there and photograph, the more comfortable you’re going to get with it. Leading to your confidence. Always be learning your craft. Serving your clients. Start believing in yourself.
When I decided to transition, I was worried about what other photographers would think including my past clients and even my grandmother if I offered these type of sessions. My grandma is now in my private facebook group btw. She enjoys seeing me change the lives of the women I work with.
But the point is, if they’re not paying your bills, their opinion doesn’t matter. And if people start giving unsolicited opinions especially on your social media channels, by all means block them. Let’s go down the rabbit hole of this topic. I have a student, who is a very talented photographer, but he didn’t understand how to make a business out of the work he was producing. He noticed other photographers were starting to follow his stories on Instagram.
Yet, these same photographers wouldn’t follow him, just lurk on his stories. He shared with me during one of our coaching sessions that, “I’m worried about what other photographers are going to think if I start promoting myself.” I shared with him that it’s good that photographers are following you because it means that your work is good. Then I asked him, “Do they pay your bills?” He replied, “No.” Then I asked, “Obviously not, so why do you care?” It’s the same question I’m asking all of you. Why do you care if someone is going to have a reaction to what you’re doing in your photography business?
You are not responsible for how people react to the work you produce or even what you're doing. Unless it’s really offensive, and based on hate. I don’t think anyone that’s here does that. Quite frankly, it’s none of their business. You’re doing a disservice to the clients out there that want to work with you, so keep that in mind. Always think about them when you post. They not only want to see your work, but they want to see you too.
I kept this in mind while in lock down at the beginning of the pandemic. I announced where I was taking this business post lock down, I showed up, and did the work. I sent out an email newsletter checking in on my clients, letting them know what I was doing, and honoring the non-boudoir session clients know that we were still going to do their shoot as soon as we could. Some kept following my newsletter, some left and that’s ok. That’s the beauty of attracting and repelling. It’s ok not to work with everyone. Because this service that you offer isn’t for everyone.
All this to say, don’t live with the regret of not doing it. This business of mine is something that is truly life changing for not only you, but your clients too.
Hey there! I'm Bethany. The Photographer, Coach, and Podcast Host behind
Boudoir Business Education. “All I want to do is photograph women in black and white and give them a beautiful and empowering experience.” Is what I wrote in my journal. Playing my idea off of a few trusted people, I was told, “There’s not a market for black and white boudoir photography”, “No one will pay for that.”, and “This is a weird idea.”
I followed my gut and went for it anyway. Right out of lock down, I had a new studio, was booked three months in advance, and haven’t looked back since. I love to photograph and empower women that understand my vision, love my work, and pay me what I’m worth. This process showed me that I can make my dreams possible and profitable. Now, I want to share what I learned (but in a much faster way) to build a thriving boudoir photography business.