I can't quite believe that I'm writing this post already. This time last year, I wrote my round up for 2016, and it feels like it was only yesterday. A whole 12 months have gone by since then, and actually, rather a lot of change, too!
This has been a big year of growth for me, as a professional but also as a person. There's been a big shift in where I focus my time and energy, and I began the year thinking that I was going to go full steam ahead into the wedding industry. I spent the first half of 2017 putting all my energy into booking weddings and couples, only to get to the wedding season and feel like something wasn't right.
I enjoyed shooting the weddings I did quite a lot, and I still have a few more next year which I really look forward to, however, I quickly realised that making myself a business as a wedding photographer wasn't going to be my dream come true. I studied fashion photography, and for as long as I can remember, I've loved everything about fashion photography. I spent a few weeks feeling quite despaired, with no real direction for my business, but after a lot of personal reflection, I had my path again, and this time, it feels so right!
Since the summer, I've spent all my time focusing on booking commercial work with fashion brands, and lifestyle businesses. This is where my creativity can really shine, and my work takes on a life of it's own. I got to work with some really exciting new clients, Joules and White Stuff being some of them, as well as other independent businesses, like Earthkind Originals, and Claire Headdon.
The first half of 2017, I also spent shooting a huge amount of personal work, which I adored. I produced some of my favourite ever images, and looking back on them makes me smile ear to ear. However, after my *meltdown* during the summer, personal work sadly took a bit of a turn for the worse. I didn't realise it at the time, but I hadn't done anything just for me in a long time. I didn't realise this until just a week or two ago! Absolutely all my energy went into client work, and booking more client work. However, I know that if I don't create work for myself as well, there's no point in this at all. So one of my big missions for 2018 is to keep a steady pace at shooting my own work, staying inspired, and learning more with each month.
2017 was also the year I accomplished one of my biggest goals: getting a puppy! I read back over my "goals for 2017" list the other day, and top of that list was about getting a dog. I've wanted a little friend for such a long time, so when I found Milo, I couldn't believe my luck. Sure, it was hard work, and life isn't as simple as it used to be. Gone are the days where I can get up and go without a care in the world! But honestly, life is so much better now. Not a day goes by where he doens't make me laugh, I've always got company at home now, and more importantly, I'm outside ALL THE TIME. Sure, I'd love it if we had a garden; it would make life so much easier, but equally, not having one means that I'm not able to sit at my desk for 8 hours at a time (like I used to). And want to know one magical thing? I get just as much work done as I did before we got Milo... if not more, despite having fewer hours in the day to work. Crazy what you can get done when you have less time to do it!
So what's next? 2017 has been a year of discovery and growth, so I think 2018 will be the year I solidify everything I've learnt, put it all into practice, and really get the ball rolling. It feels to me like the first two years of my business have been a lot of back and forth on what I should be doing, and how to get to where I need to be. Now I know what I need to do, I know where I'm going, and I know where I want to be. Now, I've just got to do it.
I'm super excited about 2018... let's see how it goes ;)