#AWPWORKSHOP | Realistic, APPLICABLE, Education. | My Backstory

 

Guys, it's here! I can't believe it! I am so excited to officially announce the inaugural #AWPWORKSHOP! 

There is this whole page on my website dedicated to explaining what the workshop is, who it is for, when and where it's happening... all that jazz. However, I wanted to share a little personal backstory on how I even got to this point in business because trust me, it's been a long time coming! 

I started my journey with photography very early on in life. Like most, I had a relative (my grandmother) who always had a bible and a camera. Two of the greatest things to ever influence my life. I can't tell you how many friends suffered through the "photoshoots" I would force them to be a part of in high-school. Hang on, let me see if I can find one... (or a few) 

 Okay- this one isn't so bad. These were some of her "Senior Portraits" where we spontaneously went out on the golf course I lived on after throwing her into one of my Charlotte Rousse dresses and sticking her in high grass beside a pond. She was a trooper and obviously can't take a bad photo anyway ;) 

Okay- this one isn't so bad. These were some of her "Senior Portraits" where we spontaneously went out on the golf course I lived on after throwing her into one of my Charlotte Rousse dresses and sticking her in high grass beside a pond. She was a trooper and obviously can't take a bad photo anyway ;) 

Eventually, I went on to take my first paid photoshoots once I got into college. I figured I had a decent skill set and could make some extra cash since I was a poor college kid.... thus, I began charging a whopping $25 for unlimited photoshoots of any and every nature; including a newborn photoshoot where I had no clue what I was doing and did things like stacking suitcases and putting a baby in them while flashing them with my Canon Rebel XS automatic flash. I wish I still had those images. It was my very first sign that Newborn Photography is NOT my calling. It didn't stop me from trying countless other times, though...

 Here's a family photo (I am pretty sure the very first one I got paid for actually) of dear friends back home in Okeechobee. As you can see, I was a pro. They love me and have one of these hanging as a canvas in their living room. Bless their sweet souls. 

Here's a family photo (I am pretty sure the very first one I got paid for actually) of dear friends back home in Okeechobee. As you can see, I was a pro. They love me and have one of these hanging as a canvas in their living room. Bless their sweet souls. 

After this phase I got a little cocky and started playing with textures and actions and presets and over editing everything. (2008-2010 photogs- who's with me?!) I made a lot of rookie mistakes that cost me in the long run. I didn't know how to run a business, how to price to be profitable and most importantly- I still had no clue what I was doing with my camera and hadn't invested in myself or my passion. It showed.

 Talk about over editing and being cocky! This is a "Self Portrait" where I hopped in my pool mid-day one sunny afternoon, took a photo of myself with my face half way under water, and cloned in my reflection and the smoke background from an ANTM episode photograph. Yikes. Also- check out how white those eyes are.... and that big blonde streak in my hair! *insert laughing with tears emoticon*

Talk about over editing and being cocky! This is a "Self Portrait" where I hopped in my pool mid-day one sunny afternoon, took a photo of myself with my face half way under water, and cloned in my reflection and the smoke background from an ANTM episode photograph. Yikes. Also- check out how white those eyes are.... and that big blonde streak in my hair! *insert laughing with tears emoticon*

After all of this nonsense, I booked my very first wedding in 2010. I was such a "pro" that I charged something like $60 or $100 or somewhere in-between and I had my at-the-time boyfriend "second shoot" with me. He assisted and snapped some photos of the groom getting dressed in the bathroom then we got in an argument and he dumped me and left with a guest he knew. HE DUMPED ME ON THE JOB AT MY FIRST EVER WEDDING. That says a lot about him but it also says that I still had no clue what I was doing because I let it get that far. The other big thing I would have done differently is having that couple take formal photos together. That's right folks, I delivered MAYBE three-definitely TWO- photos of the bride and groom together. One was a cropped candid and the other was a single solitary "smile at the camera" photo. I did manage to get family photos though. They were the sweetest and were so grateful for their photos. I can't tell you how much I cherish them. 

That one wedding lead to more and more friends asking me for my services and those friends wedding lead to strangers weddings and the next thing I knew I was running a wedding photography business. Now- there were A LOT of struggles in between here and twice as many 'real' jobs I was bouncing around in. I didn't really know - or maybe I didn't believe- that I could be a photographer full-time. Like as a 'REAL' job. The only ones I ever saw were studio photographers and I knew that wasn't my thing. I tried things such as marketing and admissions, being a mail clerk for my college, a teacher for a girls juvenile facility, teaching at a daycare, waitressing, accounting, gymnastics coaching, retail, management, and even worked as an office clerk for a local taxidermy shop! (The owners- see family photo above) I can tell you almost anything you'd want to know about alligators! 

What I still didn't know, though, was how to run a profitable business. It wasn't until 2013 when I left home and moved to Alabama that my skills, passion, and business all finally started to mesh. I began learning from other photographers, investing in my equipment, cherishing my clients, and marketing myself to the clients I wanted to work with. This allowed me to leave my job in retail management after I gave birth to Chloe and be home with her while still bringing in supplemental income. I was nowhere where I wanted to be but I was much further than I had been. 

In 2015, my at-the-time assistant and I attended my first ever Rising Tide Society chapter meeting in Destin, Florida. The topic was on Taxes and business and I learned more in that single meeting than I ever had in my whole time being involved in photography. I soon applied to start our own local chapter of Tuesday's Together and began leading that and cultivation #communityovercompetition in January of 2016. 

I am confident now that the journey I have been on for the last 10 years or more with photography was a long, drawn out process leading me to a career I can be passionate and successful in. However, I wish it didn't take me 10 years to get here. I read CONSTANTLY from fellow photographers and friends of mine how they started their business and built it to become "a six figure business in one year". I am not going to lie- I love them, but I HATE THAT. The reality is for most that you will NOT build a 6-figure income in a year. You can't attend a workshop and suddenly know the keys to life itself. 

That's why for the #AWPWORKSHOP, my heart and goal is to provide photographers in their first-third year of business the tools necessary to skip some of the major difficulties I faced that drug my learning process out over ten years and to give them REAL, AUTHENTIC, APPLICABLE information that they can go home and utilize for years to come. Things that will help them see growth both sooner AND later. Not just instant quick fixes- because those rarely last any longer than it took to implement them- but tools and knowledge that they can look back on in ten years and still see the difference that they made in their business. 

If you are a fellow photographer and are interested in snagging a seat to the #AWPWORKSHOP you can find out more information and reserve your seat here

EARLY BIRD REGISTRATION is open and there are only 16 seats available.

What are the perks to registering early?
I am glad you asked! 

-Early Bird Registrants are only required to pay $300 (instead of the $500 deposit) to reserve their seat and the rest can be paid in two installments.
- They are the ONLY registrants entered to win "THE COMPLETE BUSINESS ESSENTIALS" package which includes: 

- A free 1-Year Pixieset Basic Plan
-A Free Website Template from Designs for Squares

- A Free Annual Honeybook Account
-A Free Annual Two Bright Lights Account
-Access to the Creative Catalog through RTS

-along with the swag bags given to all attendees!

So yeah- you should reserve your seat ASAP so you don't miss out on the goods! 

 

In the meantime- you can download this FREE GUIDE to CREATING A MEANINGFUL CLIENT EXPERIENCE

If you have any questions or concerns please contact me via the contact tab at the top of the page or by email at hello@awellinghurst.com

 

  

 

Abigail Wellinghurst

Abigail Wellinghurst Photography, Spanish Fort , USA