I started photographing weddings when I was 17 years old, and officially started my business when I was 18 right as I started my first semester of college. One year after officially establishing my business, I missed the first day of class of my second year of college (because, priorities ;)) to attend The Gathering. Wow, was it life giving. I remember the biggest thing it did was give me confidence that, regardless of my age, that I could really grow a thriving business and gave me some actionable steps towards doing that. Already in my business I had potential clients who doubted me… though few and far between.
If I’m being honest, God has given me some AMAZING clients that didn’t (and don’t) see being young as a bad thing, but more of a “WOW, I can’t believe you’re so young and running a successful business!” I’m so grateful to have a super supportive family, friends, and husband. Does that mean I’ve never had doubts, though? Of course not. There are so many times I’ve doubted myself… but I’m not old enough to do this or that… what if they think I’m silly because I’m still in college?… the thoughts can go on from there.
Then comes The Gathering event. When I attended round one back in 2016, I was a baby in business and had just started one year prior (two years prior in shooting weddings professionally). I felt a surge of confidence afterward knowing that Hope Taylor and Caroline Logan were not only about the same age as me… but were already super successful in growing their photography businesses! Being surrounded by those two + so many girls who were also doing the same thing was a game changer.
Round two of the Gathering was no different… in fact, it was EVEN BETTER. I walked out having formed SO MANY new friendships and connections, but the biggest thing was the heart stuff. Being two years further into business, I had already gone through the struggles they talked about and made the mistakes that they had made… I could totally relate on a deeper level after going though all the ups and downs of owning my business over the past few years, especially at a young age.
Caroline really challenged me to remember WHY you’re photographing weddings… and to be 100% all there for EVERY couple. Your attitude matters SO MUCH and it’s important that wherever you go, to be all there. Hope gave so much encouragement that even when you can’t please everyone… just keep your blinders on, and keep doing what you have been called to do because you are UNIQUELY made to serve the people you’re serving. What amazing reminders that I know was orchestrated by God so perfectly. <3
I road tripped down to Fredericksburg, Virginia for this amazing event at Stevenson Ridge with my dear friend Kelsie and new, equally sweet friend Rachael! We were able to do some exploring the morning of the event around downtown Fredericksburg. We tried frozen Chai at (I WISH they had this in Columbus!! Chai is my FAV), went into some boutiques, and of course, took some fun headshots of each other!