This is my Story,
How it started
I have been working as a professional photographer for 15 years. My grandfather was also a photographer. Photography has always been something that came natural to me and has consistently kept my interest. I started shooting weddings after my son was born in 2004. I was looking for a way to do what I love and become more available for my baby at the same time. From the very start people began complimenting me on being so very fun and easy to work with. They said I made them feel at ease and that I was capturing so many great moments and memories. I ended up falling in love with this new career choice and named it Opal Moments Photography. Over the first few years I would shoot hundreds of weddings.
I have been blessed to meet hundreds of children whom I get to photograph year after year. Many of them coming from the first few weddings I ever shot. These kids are over 10 years old now. Some are tiny little newborns who I look forward to getting to know over the coming years. I really treasure the opportunity to capture them as they grow up.
I absolutely love kids and kids seem to love me back. I think it is because in my family sessions I am playful and patient. I can make even the shyest of faces smile and light up.
Opal Moments vs Sweetbay Photo
I began to book more weddings every year, more sweet kids came aboard for my family sessions and my business started to grow. I separated my business in two. Making Opal Moments all about the kids and Sweetbay Photo was born to tell the wedding stories. Until recently I kept the photos on separate websites. Figuring people didn't care to see newborn pics while searching for a wedding photographer and visa versa. But now I changed my mind and its all here together. Makes it easier.
Truth is I can't let it all fall under the name Sweetbay because I can't let the Opal Moments name fade away.
Plus I need a place to put all my nature pics too right?
Why Sweetbay was born
Realizing my business was growing fast, I wasn't able to personally shoot every event coming my way. I still wanted to be able to help people get fair pricing and a great photographer. So in 2014 I developed a team of photographers to shoot events for dates I was unavailable for. I decided I would pay them for the day of shooting and keep the editing and planning under my control. This would allow me to keep the cost down. I wanted to be more available for my Son's life and events as well as spend more of my weekends shooting a bit closer to home. Picking people to shoot for my team was quite a process. I basically wanted to clone myself. I wanted to make sure they kept it fun, that they were directive but at the same time kind and patient. That they smiled, enjoyed the job and were truly pleasant to be around. I needed them to be dependable and professional. Since I was editing I needed them to shoot well so I wasn't having to fix sloppy images. I wanted to make sure they could take great photos while at the same time getting lots of detail and candid moments. They had to uphold my reputation and make my people happy in the end.
Now I have a team of excellent Photographers and Videographers. Together we handle over 100 weddings a year. I shoot about half of those weddings. I still am the one who does the planning and connecting before the big day. I do all of the editing and delivery of images as well. Its a blast! I have a big following of families that shoot with me every year. Over and over they tell a friend about me and I get to meet more and more cute little faces.
When I find myself some free time between shooting weddings and cute little faces, I tend to shoot some pretty awesome scenery and nature shots. I figured Opal View would be an appropriate name for this third aspect of my photography.
I love my job. Is this a job?