Madison James Photography » Boutique Photography

What I learned in Texas | Mclean Senior Photographer | Madison James Photography


This winter I had an amazing opportunity to travel to Texas to learn with one of the best in the industry! This is what I learned in Texas…

I attended Amanda Holloway’s Kitchen Sink Workshop and not only learned amazing business practices but also made life-long friends in the process!

At first I did not think I was even going to make my flight…I ran through the entire airport with a camera bag and a carry-on suitcase. When I arrived at my departing gate I had to (gasp) check my camera bag. Thousands of dollars of camera equipment and the airline wanted me to check my bag…I think not! It was not a pretty sight when I hand carried all of my camera equipment on board.

After multiple delays I arrived in Houston, Texas and was ready to drive to Hunstville. Laura of Laura Luft Photography and I carpooled and thank goodness! The Houston Airport was crazy!

So what did I learn? Three months later I am still trying to figure everything out. My head is swimming with the amount of information and ideas that I learned and want to implement and my list of things to change to make my business successfully is long but there are some things I have started working into my workflow.

First and foremost, Amanda holds nothing back. If you have a question she will answer that question and she does not sugar coat it. Like when I said I was driving to Harford County for portrait sessions. You are out of your mind was what she said. Amanda has given me the tools to help my business become successful and the confidence to implement them.

Here is what I have noticed three months later…

Over time I found myself getting into a rut. I was worried about what other photographers were doing, constantly questioning how can they be so successful when they are so much cheaper that what I was charging. This voice is so difficult to silence. I am still struggling with it but it is slowly becoming quiet. What I can say is I no longer care what other photographers around me are doing and I  no longer care that some photographers are basically paying their clients to photograph them. I know I will no longer be “that” photographer and will no longer allow this to happen. There are plenty of clients to go around and I am happy now to target my ideal client. I am still working on this…but three months later I can now say even though the voice is still there…it is not as loud.

As a photographer I have grown more confident. I am confident is calling myself a photographer. Before I was soft spoken about my occupation. It was almost like an after thought. Hi, I am Beth. I take pretty photos. Now I can confidently say Hi, I am Beth and I AM a Senior Portrait Photographer. I feel confident in telling the world about my business. I still hear that voice…the one that says I am not good enough to be a professional photographer or my photos are never going to be as good as hers. One day I hope to have silenced that nagging voice in the back of my head but for now I am slowly pushing that voice away.

mclean senior photographerPINTHIS

What I learned in Texas | mclean senior photographerPINTHIS

Posing has never been my strong suit but with the posing flow Amanda teaches I have the confidence to know what exactly I want to do. I have slowed down…a TON! I use to have shoot hundreds of photos to get just a few that I loved. Now I go in with a plan and think about every shot I take. No more overshooting for me!

What I learned in Texas | mclean senior photographerPINTHISI am now working with an outstanding hair and makeup artist (Kara with Best Face Forward). Clients will now be given a full service session which includes hair and makeup. No matter what your hair and makeup will be perfect for your shoot. Clients will no longer have to worry about selecting someone to do their makeup. I will take care of all of that for you.

I have created a Senior Magazine to answer all those questions a client might have before booking a session. It has everything from before and after photos of actual sessions to reviews from parents and seniors. The magazine took days and weeks to create and has now become a working document of information. After I was finished I felt relieved and satisfied at my creation! I will also be sending out a welcome packet to all clients as their session gets closer.


What has changed about what I will offer?

Digital files? YES and then some. I will now be offering many of the same items I have in the past with the exception of a few new additions. Those clients who purchase a the full digital collection will now receive a gorgeous crystal USB drive, all of their photos printed as 5x7s placed in a beautiful images box. Seniors will also receive their own personalized App.

Senior Photographers, if you want a life changing experience contact Amanda. You will not regret it!

What I learned in Texas | mclean senior photographerPINTHISWhat I learned in Texas | mclean senior photographerPINTHIS


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  • Jennifer - It sounds like you had an amazing experience! These photos are stunning and I have no doubt your business will be so successful!

  • Andrea - These images are gorgeous! Sounds like an amazing experience! So happy for you ?

  • Beth - Oh my gosh you are going to love it!

  • Jane Gaschler - Absolutely stunning photos! And good for you for “doing you” and pushing that voice aside that wonders what other photographers are doing. I was in the same boat! Coming to the realization that we, as photographers, should believe in our worth, is priceless to our business as a whole. Keep doing you and creating amazing portraits!

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