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Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Kelsie and I'm a wedding photographer based in Columbus, Ohio. Grab a cup of coffee (or in my case - a cup of hot chocolate!), a glass of wine or a bottle of coke and enjoy viewing my latest work, browsing resources for brides and photographers, and getting a little peek into my life!

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The Heart Behind it All

June 10, 2016

Tips for getting started

Starting a small business is not on the normal to-do list for a college student. Often times, it seems as though we are encouraged not to, because it isn’t the “stereotypical” route that a student should take. We are expected to go to college, get one to two summer internships and have a job by the fall of senior year. Let me tell you, friends, there is no right or wrong way to craft your future, because that’s certainly not what my experience looked like! I entered college not really knowing what to expect. I made some friends, joined a sorority, and took on leadership roles in on-campus organizations. You know, all the things that college students are expected to do. However, instead of getting an internship after my sophomore year, I chose to spend 6 weeks serving the Lord in Fiji, and then travel around Europe for a month with a close friend. It was the summer of a lifetime! The following summer, I did get an internship, but also had the opportunity to start my photography business. When I started my senior year, I didn’t have a full time job, and was honestly still trying to figure what what this little business of mine looked like.

I would be lying if I said that there wasn’t any pressure to have a job in the fall. Professors would ask what our plans were after graduation on the first day of class (No, I’m not kidding)! But just because someone or something is placing pressure on you to fit into the stereotypical mold doesn’t mean that you have to live by their rules. If you have a dream that you want to chase, by all means run after it with all you have! There’s no better time than now to do something that you love.

If that dream of yours happens to be starting a business of some sort, whether its creative or otherwise, here’s a few tips for getting started:

  1. Legalize your business by filing it with the state. This will help protect you and your business (depending on how you file – my business is an LLC), and allows you to legally conduct business. Oh, don’t forget a vendor’s license! That’s how you have the ability to collect sales tax… good old tax.
  2. Utilize the people around you. College is filled with so many people who have a variety of skills, passions and talents. If I learned anything in college, it’s that we all have our own unique strengths, and that is okay. In fact, it’s a huge blessing. If you struggle with properly keeping track of your expenses, ask an accounting student for some general guidance. If you need a logo, I’m sure a graphic design student would be willing to help you!
  3. Figure out your voice and then scream it from the mountaintops. Okay, maybe don’t scream, but stick with it and be consistent. If you know what the direction of your business is going to be in the next year, 5 years or 10 years, then everything you do should align with that and have a consistent message. For example, if you know you want to be a wedding photographer, but are mainly getting family portraits and just a few engagements/weddings, mainly focus on posting the e-sessions and weddings to draw in that crowd of followers. Make sense?

I’m giving you these tips from experience, but that certainly doesn’t mean that I have everything figured out!! I’m learning as I go, and keeping track of my journey because I know that someone, someday will be thankful that I’ve shared it!

With joy,
Kelsie

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