Happy October!! You guys... This month I am so thrilled to share with you another young, passionate business owner, who gets to raw and real with us! Taylor Reed with Taylor Katina's Photography opens up about why she started her business and some of the struggles that she faced to get where she is today! So without further a-do! Here is Taylor!
Q: What is your Business?
Lifestyle Photography, specializing in Weddings, Engagements, and Families
Q: Why did you start it?
Because I always had a passion for film way back when I was a kid. I grew up in a greek family who were full of painters, musicians and I found my art in photography. A HUGE reason I opened my business was to help other people FEEL confident, valued and worthy exactly how they are, or in the situation they are in. Sometimes in life we go through seasons...good and bad… and I want to help others appreciate both, freeze time and create raw, unfiltered life moments with our community. Making others laugh, smile and feel at ease in front of the camera is a big priority for me. At the end of each meetup, wedding, or session I want all interaction to have made you feel so valued and cared for.
Q: What are you most proud of as a business owner?
I am most proud of growth. I find it really easy to sit back and take things for granted, but I make it a point to push myself every day to grow and help others more than I did the day before. I have found in the last 6 years of doing this that I have been able to touch people's lives in a way I never thought possible.
Q: What is your biggest struggle that you’ve overcome? And how did you handle it?
I struggled with severe anxiety/panic attacks and ptsd for 2.5 years. I was working a corporate job knowing my long term goal was to own my photography business full time. I had to work through weddings, shoots and business/work all while having the fear of even putting my feet on the floor when I woke up in the morning. My eyes tear up just typing this, but the extent of the panic attacks got so bad that I had to quit my job and I barely left the house not even to see family for a whole year and a half!! It was a struggle on myself, my business growth and my marriage. I prayed daily to have this anxiety taken away and “why couldn’t I just be normal” I always found being transparent about this was a huge help to others because not everything in life is pretty.. fast forward to today.. GOD has HEALED me ya’ll. I am 1 year free of panic attacks! NONE whatsoever! And I have been able to triple my business, invest full time into it and am now a FULL TIME Business owner! I give all the glory to God and am so grateful for every day I struggled because I am so much more appreciative now than I would have been if I didn’t struggle through those two years of panic and anxiety. I am able to talk to large groups at weddings, show up when needed and push through things I couldn’t have ever done before!
Q: Who is your biggest (business) role model? Why?
I would say my biggest business role model would be (I don’t think she knows this so SURPRISE) Paige Ehnle of No Roots Boots. A couple years ago I met her buying boots at the mall.. She was kind, welcoming and what she doesn’t know was I was feeling super insecure that day and had a hard day leaving my house. She had SO much passion about boots and leather, and it sparked a flame in me that I didn’t know I had. Later on I saw a little behind the scenes of her opening up this mobile boot shop among other things and I thought.."WOW she is doing it" and I was so proud! I follow along on her journey and I see how much passion she has for PEOPLE not money. She is kind and adorable to boot. She reminds me that it is good to step out and be brave as you are not trying to be anyone else. I live for that now in my business.
Q: What advice would you give yourself when you first started?
Don’t get ahead of yourself. DO NOT COMPARE yourself to others
Q: Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspirations comes from life in general. Is that too cheesy? HA! But really..I see the community of small business owners and God’s creation around me when I am out photographing. It really is such a beautiful world we live in. There are so many inspirational moments that happen at weddings, family sessions, maternity sessions etc. You get to see new life, new love form grow, families grow, and couples profess their love on the biggest day of their lives. That to me is extremely inspiring to keep going.
Q: Anything else you may want to say to someone else wanting to start but too afraid.
Be Strong and Courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified… for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you or forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6
JUMP. you can do it. You will do it and put in the work. Live passionate and full of gratefulness.
You can find Taylor on:
Her Website: https://www.taylorkatinasphotography.com/