ADVICE // 1
How I Organized My Business Finances

I know I’m going to sound geeky saying this, but I really enjoy sitting down with my accountant and going over our taxes each year.   I consider it my business’ yearly performance review! It’s the way I evaluate where I’m at in terms of my goals and find ways to do better the following year.  Last year I decided to finally get an accounting software to make life a little easier come tax time and to get an in-depth view of my business finances.

It was a bit of a shocker at first because up to that point I wasn’t thinking about my business in dollars and cents- I was just happy to book clients! People wanted my pictures and that in and of itself was exciting and rewarding. But more clients doesn’t necessarily equate to a profitable business. A lot of photographers get themselves in debt buying gear, equipment and software without ever thinking about their bottom line. When your business is also your passion, it’s so easy to blur the lines of what’s a business need and a want. That was the hardest part of taking the step towards getting an accounting software. I knew that once I started documenting and categorizing my inflows and outflows, the truth would be known - is my business profitable or am I using the business to justify my photography-related purchases?

The good news: it was profitable… but barely! Once I started documenting and itemizing my expenses meticulously, I was able to gather data to make more informed decisions about how to run my business more efficiently and profitably. Like making the switch from discs to USBs, which was not only a more practical way to deliver my images, but made the most financial sense since I could buy the drives in bulk lowering the cost. I also began investing a little more in new branding/marketing materials that would appeal specifically to my target clientele.  I became more critical when making business purchases (working on a post with some of those good and bad purchase decisions soon!) and started asking myself the tough question of whether this was a “want” or a true need for the betterment of the business.  Most importantly, it helped me value the time and services I provided as a photographer and gave me the confidence to adjust my pricing accordingly. That decision is never an easy one, but it was necessary in order to continue providing the best client experience for all my customers.  I’ve enjoyed watching my business grow and evolve each and every year into something I’m truly proud of. Hope you found my story helpful. More business and photography-related advice posts coming soon!

*For those wondering, I use GoDaddy Bookeeping (formerly known as Outright).  It’s simple, FREE (which is always a plus in my book!) and web based, which I always prefer since I use many different devices.  And the best part, there’s an app for mobile devices, so I can use it on the go!

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April 16, 2014 - 11:23 pm

Sandy - I love how you’ve shared your experience and give great tips to your audience! Keep it girl!

April 16, 2014 - 11:24 pm

Sandy - Keep it up girl! Xoxo

STYLE SNAPSHOT // 6
Modern Magenta

I love magenta! It’s the perfect cross between purple and pink and it packs such a flirty punch! In an otherwise very simple ensemble, I love how the magenta just screams girly and fun and SPRING! For the latest Style Snapshot shoot with Cindy’s Little Black Book, we experimented with this fun color out on the town.  But I can totally see this bright hue against the beautiful backdrop of cherry blossoms and other blooms this time of year. You can find a detailed list of where you can find some of her outfit pieces here.

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April 15, 2014 - 9:42 pm

Elly - Super cute heels!

THE CREATIVITY PROJECT // UMBRELLAS
A Photography Theme Blog Circle

This month’s Creativity Project theme is “Umbrellas” or perhaps it’s “Rain”…. To be honest, I’m not quite sure! As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I’ve been completely out of the loop.  But one things certain,  I must not like taking my big camera out in the rain because I have no pictures of rain or umbrellas in my archives whatsoever!  I did, however, find a few on my Instagram feed that will have to do for this month’s theme(s).

To continue the circle, please be sure to stop by my friend, Pam Doughty’s blog for her take on this month’s Creativity Project theme!

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April 10, 2014 - 10:07 am

creativeheartbystephanie - Oh my goodness! Love the dog in his coat to the very last image of dog and the image of the rain boats! I felt like it was going though a nice stroll with you guys on a rainy day :)

April 10, 2014 - 10:08 am

Maddy {Mad Hearts Photography} - Lol! We love that yellow coat. He, unfortunately, despises it!

April 10, 2014 - 10:44 am

s. badiyah austin - ok. let me list all the reasons i LOVE this post:

1. i’m an IG fanatic, so seeing the square format just gave me a “fix” like no other!

2. such a creative and cool variety of april images, artistically, i am just, thrilled (the minimalist in me is drawn to that leaf!)

3. such a cool idea! *light bulb* never thought to comb my own feed, cause you’re right, i don’t think i ever bring my camera out in the rain, really…(which, perhaps, i shall, now)

awesome post!!!

April 10, 2014 - 10:45 am

Maddy {Mad Hearts Photography} - You’re on Instagram? Awesome! What’s your handle? I’d love to follow your feed :)

April 10, 2014 - 10:47 am

Pam D - Ahhhh… I love your cellphone shots! I wish I had thought of that, AND that explains why I only have BEACH umbrella shots in my archives! The dog in the raincoat made me laugh out loud…

April 10, 2014 - 10:48 am

Maddy {Mad Hearts Photography} - I was looking around for beach umbrella shots too, but apparently I don’t have very many of those either! lol! I think I just have to take more personal pics in general :)

April 10, 2014 - 9:10 pm

Life with Kaishon - I think I love this best of all.
You are the best instagrammer.
Promise me you will be my friend forever and ever until the end of time!
This day has been INSANE but I am going to brainstorm about your text right now.
I love you : ) and I am super glad you do not take your big camera out in the rain!

April 10, 2014 - 9:38 pm

Dan Beeler - LOL @ the dog in the raincoat! Great job pulling it all together!

April 11, 2014 - 7:50 am

Amy - The Parker pups in a parka–and the look on his face. ‘Really?’ I can’t handle it! :)

April 14, 2014 - 8:53 am

Salma - Beautiful captures! Love the dog in the raincoat. I also love that leaf…so pretty. We still have tons of snow here.

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