I've had clients, old and new, ask me this question - or questions similar. I wanted to take a little time today to explain.
I don't know that I can really explain all that was going on in 2019, when I started my leave. I had recently become a single mother of two, I was working full time+ at a corporate job, I was trying to dig myself out of thousands in debt from my marriage. I was so tired, my art was becoming more of a chore and that has never been how I wanted to feel about photography. I wasn't sleeping, my kids were struggling with our life changes - I was trying to nurture them and remain sane myself. It was just too much.
So, I closed my doors. I bequeathed my clients to a local photographer - who I love dearly and cherish her work (which has only grown and evolved exponentially since that time). I focused on my children, I focused on my corporate job, I went back to enjoying pulling out my camera when I needed to create. Every day I missed working with my clients. I missed seeing their families grow. I would watch them work with new photographers, and feel a little twinge of jealousy - because I knew that was where I was supposed to be.
When I found out I was pregnant with my youngest child, it changed my relationship with corporate America. I had been able to spend so much time with my older two when they were infants, and I wanted that for this baby. The pandemic hit, and that changed so much. I was able to work from home and when Ezekiel was born that seemed like a God send - until it didn't. I was answering phone calls and shushing children. Crying because my oldest daughter would have to take the screaming baby from my hands and rock him - which was not her job. I just wanted my kids to be kids.
So, I re-evaluated. I knew the dream was to be a full time photographer - I knew that was the end game - but I didn't know how I would get there. I started doing some boudoir work and thought maybe I could sustain on just that. There is such a big network of photographers here, and the market for boudoir is the highest. I started working on a plan.
I had a horrible day at my corporate job. The job itself has always been high stress, but this day was the last straw. I immediately put in my notice and drafted up a business plan. I knew, as much as I love boudoir, my heart is with family portraiture. I made huge investments, reopened my business, and haven't looked back.