It is with a heavy heart that I announce my retirement from wedding photography. It has been a joyous decade of falling in love with photography, finding my niche, learning the ins and outs of entrepreneurship, and meeting some really awesome people. After much prayer and consideration, I know it’s time to lay this down and move on to focus on my health and family.
A few years ago, during a difficult season in my life I remember praying and asking God what the purpose of my photography was. Was it just to create beautiful images, to tell a love story, to meet wonderful people? He said those things were merely a byproduct of my purpose. My purpose in life, no matter what I was doing, is to make His love known to the world. He gave me a picture of a woman standing on top of a mountain, graceful in her movements, reveling in the beauty of God’s creation, and representing the freedom that is available to us all in Christ Jesus. From that point on, I had a clear understanding of my purpose and my last years of wedding photography have been my most treasured ones. If you have seen a glimpse of God’s love through this gift of photography, then my job has been done.
Hair + Makeup Artist Shine, Tina! • Florals Amy Lauren Floral Design
To every client I have had the honor of working with – thank you. None of this would have been possible without your trust and support. Know that you have been prayed for and it has been one of my life’s biggest blessings to get to know you. Stay in touch!
To my colleagues – you guys are amazing. Thank you for challenging me, being there for me, encouraging me in so many ways. For every collaboration, wedding, styled shoot, and workshop, I have grown in so many ways because of each of you. My character as a business woman was built from my many interactions with you all over the years and I’m so thankful to have worked with some of the most talented, fiercely passionate, and wise people in the industry. Thank you.
To Kasey Childers – GIRL! You have been so much more than a VA to me over the past year. You understood my business, my brand, and my heart without fail. My business would not be where it is today without you. You encouraged me when I wanted to quit, you worked even when you were going through major life changes, and dealt with so many situations with such grace. Thank you, thank you. I don’t know that I could have survived this past year without you. Love you, friend!
Finally, thanks to my hubs – the one who encouraged me to pursue wedding photography full time in 2012. He learned to shoot a camera manually so he could help as a second shooter when I was first starting out. He has always believed in my work and always made me feel like I could do anything. Thank you for being a single dad on many weekends, especially those double header weekends and the days I needed to recover. You have always been the backbone of Anny Photography and none of this would have been possible without your prayers and encouragement. I love you. <3
To my clients for the remainder of the year and 2019. Nothing will change about your experience with Anny Photography. I will be available to you per usual through out your wedding journey and even after.
Creative direction + Floral design Porter & Ives • Model Mollie Thorsen • Calligraphy Kelsey Malie Calligraphy • Gown Hitched Salon
• Gown designer Lela Rose • Makeup Tamar C Makeup • Hair Angela Choi
Hair + Makeup Artist Glam Bridal Beauty • Calligraphy + Invitation Suite peach + paperie
Venue The Woodlands at Algonkian • Wedding Gown Ellie’s Bridal Boutique • Hair Anna Fazio • Makeup Ariel Lewis • Floral Design Lavender & Willow • DJ DS Entertainment • Videography NVU Films • Cake Manoa Bakery • Catering Great Blue Heron • Bridesmaids Dresses Watters Collection at VowToBeChic • Groomsmen and Groom Attire Indochino • Invitations Wedding Paper Divas
Venue Breaux Vineyards • Makeup Artist + Hair Stylist Glam Bridal Beauty by Ashley Chin • Floral Design Amanda Burnette • Coordinator Hannah Kao • Bridesmaids Dresses BHLDN • Groom + Groomsmen Attire Bonobos • Signage + Calligraphy Joanna Hope Art • Catering Main Event Caterers • DJ Bialeks Music
Venue Herrington on the Bay • Makeup Artist Valerie Hammer Makeup Artistry • Hair Stylist Total Babe Hair Co. • Floral Design Pure Lilies • Wedding Dress Casablanca via Bridals by Elena • Groom + groomsmen attire Bonobos • Calligraphy + Signage peach + paperie, Joanna Hope Art • Wedding invitations + Save the dates by Wedding Paper Divas + Minted • DJ Crow Entertainment • Ribbon Torn + Tied • Cake Fiona’s Cakes by the Cake Faerie
Calligraphy Kelsey Malie Calligraphy • Ribbon Silk + Willow
Key Takeaways after 10 years in Photography
I have learned so many things along this journey. Here are some key takeaways.
- People first. Clients, their family members, colleagues, vendors, mentors, mentees – everyone deserves respect. Before anything else, understand your business is borne out of relationship and human interaction. Treat others as you would want to be treated. Respond in kindness even when it is difficult to. This doesn’t mean you need to continue to work with unpleasant people, but remember it is your character that people will remember.
- We all start somewhere. Don’t be afraid to give of yourself to others who are just starting out. It was one of my business/personal goals to make sure I helped people who asked for it. If someone wants to shadow you during an engagement or wedding? Let them. Teach them as you work. Build them up, help them. What you will find is that you are helping to cultivate a future professional in this industry – the kind that you would want to work with. The return for me was one that I didn’t expect – the joy in seeing others grow, seeing others take newer photographers under their wing, walking through professional and personal situations together, and most of all friendship.
Finding true value in a social media driven industry.
What you spend the most time on will show you what you value the most in life. Working in an industry that depends heavily on social media presence, it’s really hard to stay present in the day to day. But we need to fight for this – our families, friends, every person we have a relationship with needs us to be present. Use a social media scheduler, a virtual assistant, anything – to make sure you are not missing out of life’s greatest moments because you are stuck to your phone. And while we are talking social media, let me just say. Getting published is wonderful – but it’s not everything. Getting likes is great – but it’s not everything. Love well, deliver an incredible, unforgettable experience to your clients and beautiful images of their most important day – that’s what matters (see first point).
Do you. Be you.
In an industry where comparison is so rampant and hard to avoid, my takeaway is this: you are the only person who can bring your specific God-given gift into the world. Your worth, your identity depends not on what you do for a living. You are worthy because you were made in the image of God, to be uniquely you. There are many tips and how-to’s that people will share with you, but at the end of the day, know that you don’t have to do any of it. Do what works for you and your business. Take in all the inspiration you need but create a style of your own. Anyone can look at a perfectly curated photo and replicate it – but that’s not creativity, it’s actually plagiarism (gasp). Don’t be afraid to be different! Be you.
Planning/Design Amelia Lawrence Weddings • Floral Design Amy Lauren Floral Design • Hair + Makeup Artist Susan Lim Makeup Artist • Stationery peach + paperie • Cake Artist + Wreath Calligraphy Better Together Cakes & Calligraphy • Gown Wins Design • Shoes Badgley Mischka • Models Ali Katiby + Stephanie Knight • Suit The Black Tux • Ribbon Torn & Tied • Rentals White Glove Rentals • Candles Creative Candles
Gah.. this is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to write. Seriously, thank you all from the bottom of my heart for a wonderful decade in photography. I’m sure I will never let go of my love for photography and never forget all the wonderful memories I have made with you. God bless!