Kitchener Wedding Photographer
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International Adventure Elopements

Celebrating 10 years in business

March 30, 2021

I have started and deleted this first paragraph about a dozen times. How does one wrap up 10 years as a small business owner in a 1500 word blog post? If I am being honest, being an entrepreneur and starting my own business was never on my radar growing up. So how I got from there to here is still a mystery to me. Yet, here I am.

I was a stay at home Mom with two little ones and the more days that went by, the more I knew I did not want to return back into the workplace. It was at this time that I started to think of ideas on what I could do to earn money so I can be home with them. I knew I had hobbies and interests but how could I monetize them? School never taught me how to go into business for myself, so this was something I would need to figure out for myself.

I took a risk. One I was not sure would work out. I am happy to say that it did, but at the time it was a decision I took a gamble on as well as myself. I decided to cash out my RSP’s and use that money to purchase my very first DSLR camera, iMac computer and register my official business. This was all back on April 1, 2011, no joke.

Since then life has been a pretty wild ride. I’ve had six-figure years, I have cried tears of happiness and stress. I have traveled to 18 countries, celebrated hundreds of weddings, and captured over a thousand milestones for my clients. I’ve been published in magazines and featured on some pretty awesome blogs. It was a lot of hard work, dedication, and sacrifice.

I’ve had the opportunity to meet and work with some incredibly talented and passionate creative minds. I have had complete strangers turn into friends that I consider family. The last 10 years have completely flown by. Even now writing this it is still hard to come to the realization that I have been in business for a decade. But want to know what makes me proud? That I took the chance on myself, pushed through and perservered. My drive, passion and committment to my career is one of the things I take most pride in.

So where to next? 2020 was to be my year. It was the year my calendar was filled with many goals coming to fruition. All my dedicated work over the last couple of years was all wrapped up into 12 months. I was so excited to see it all through. Then we all know how that went. As much as the year was a downer, to say the least, it was a year that brought so much clarity and perspective. Goals have changed, plans are changing and you want to know what? I can’t wait for the next couple of years to dedicate myself to these new goals.

I have made a clear decision to move into creative education and to slow down on destination weddings. I have decided to take on new ventures in opening online stores and niching down into branding and lifestyle photography more. I am looking forward to being home with the family more and working on new projects. A big one I am working on will be hosting in person workshops. This has been on the radar for a long time and I can’t wait to make that happen in 2022! So stay tuned for that.

All this to say, I am so grateful for each and every single friend and family member who supported me, has hired me, and has shared my work with their family and friends. My business has thrived over the last decade because of all of you. There are so many things I want to say but am having a hard time putting all the thoughts together on my head. So I will close out with this.

If the next 10 years are going to be an awesome as the first 10, I can’t wait to get started on all these new projects and goal. Time to push my boundaries and keep taking steps forward

Much love! xo Jess

jess collins at disney spring in florida celebrating as a business owner

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