You love hearing how other photographers got to where they are today and this week we have our second ‘my photography journey’ here for you from one of our incredible CMpros! Tuesday you got to read Tracy’s story and today you get to learn how CMpro Tami Wilson got started and the path she’s followed to become the talented photographer she is now.
my photography journey | tami wilson
I am so honored and excited to share my photography journey with you. I’ve come a long way the past four years and feel very blessed to be able to work at something I am passionate about and brings me joy each and every day.
I have always been drawn to photography and loved going through all of our family photo albums as a little girl. Growing up I would use my parents film Minolta camera and I vividly remember my anticipation of picking up our pictures from the drugstore as it seemed like it took forever to have them developed. The ability to freeze time and capture a moment forever is what I love most about photography. The old saying, a picture is worth a thousand words, is so true and when something is captured in a certain way a photograph can create an emotional response much more so than any story told.
Like many other photographers out there, my love of photography grew stronger with the birth of my son. That was back in the fall of 2004 and not long after he was born we purchased our first DSLR, a Canon Rebel xt. I happily shot on auto for several years until 2008 when I started a Project 365, taking a picture each and every day, as a way to document our daily lives. Shooting daily really made me stop and think about each shot I was taking and honestly I was not consistently happy with my results. It was then I decided to learn to shoot in manual and see just how much I could improve.
A few images from 2008:
Yes, I’ll admit it. I was obsessed and completely engrossed myself in everything photography related. That first year of shooting in manual completely changed my way of thinking and I loved having complete control over a shot and pushing myself to that next level. I am so happy that I have that photo album of 2008 documenting my first year of shooting in manual as the growth is amazing to see even though there are definitely some images I cringe at due to poor lighting and over use of actions. I think we have all been there!
I would say my thinking towards turning photography from a hobby to a career all started with lots of encouragement from family and friends and my need to find a flexible career. My background is in public relations and I knew I would not go back into that field as I traveled all the time and my priority was to be home with my son.
In the spring of 2009, I upgraded to a Canon 50D and 24-70L lens and began portfolio building. To be honest, at first I was very discouraged because I was so used to working with my own son and taking pictures of other children was a lot more challenging than I had anticipated. However, the challenge is exactly what kept me going and I was determined to make this work and slowly but surely I was more and more confident going into my sessions. Instead of stressing out before each one and getting nervous I would tell myself I couldn’t wait for the challenge and I knew I would learn something new and grow with each session. I won’t lie, many times I was still incredibly nervous and afraid of failure but I just faked the confidence and pretty soon I would get in my photographer mode and the nerves would vanish.
Some photographs from 2009 including my first newborn:
Now that I was comfortable with my photography sessions I had to figure out this whole business aspect. Hello Clickin Moms! I originally found CM through Ali Edwards’ blog and decided to have a look around and join. I was beyond excited about all of the information at my fingers tips. I quickly figured out I had a lot more to learn but was so happy I had all of these other women there who are walking or have walked in my shoes and are so willing to offer their advice and opinions.
Over the past three years my business has continued to grow more and more each year. Over the past year, I would say is when everything really clicked and I can happily say I love being in business. You quickly find out that running a photography business is 10% taking pictures and 90% running a business.
Presently I am learning to shoot what I love and for me that is newborns. I still thoroughly enjoy my family sessions and corporate head shots sprinkled in here and there but newborns and babies are where my heart is and the area of my business I am most interested in growing. I completed a newborn workshop in February of this year and shortly after opened up a home studio just for my newborn and baby plan clients. I have been beyond blessed this year with a thriving business and sometimes I have to pinch myself because I’m living my dream and have my wonderful clients to thank for allowing it to come true.
When I started on this photography journey I could only hope all the countless hours of research, reading, studying and practice would bring me to where I am now. Doing what I love and loving what I do. Yes it’s cliche but it’s a 100% true!
Thank you for sharing your incredible story with us Tami! It’s so great to get to know you better and learn how your photography journey progressed over the years. Make sure and head over to Tami’s website and blog to check out more of her work and head on over to her facebook page to keep up with her recent happenings!