Sunday, December 19, 2010

Photographer Then Baker

Can I just say the wind is so vicious out there today that I half expect a tree to fall or lose power. Hopefully neither will happen. In the meantime I will preoccupy my mind with this blog.

First I would like to establish that I am a photographer first and a cookie baker second. I have been told on many occasions that maybe I should put more emphasis on cookie baking, because it is doing so well, but I refuse, because though I love baking cookies, photography is my first true love, my passion. The cookie business is supporting the photography until the photography can run by itself. That is my plan and I am sticking to it.

To give you a little history about my cookies. I have been baking for the holidays for the past 15 years or so for family and friends. After lots of feedback to start a cookie business I finally did this year. I attended 2 farmers markets to sell my cookies which turned out quite well. One of the markets did far better than the other. Both markets allowed me to sell some photography as well. Which was a bonus. The markets lasted from May to October. In December I had 3 cookies orders, which I didn't expect. So yes cookies did far better than photography. I plan on doing 2 farmers markets next year as well which will keep me plenty busy with cookies. One of the markets I'm sure of the other not sure yet, but if I do get into it, it will be a good one. I will let you know what the markets are later in the winter.

So to summarize this year. Because of finances I was only able to do 7 art shows. Only 2 of those shows had better sales from the previous year. Which is why I am doing 9 new shows all in Southern Maine, in Connecticut, Vermont and New Hampshire. This year I also created a new website about a month ago which has more features than the old one. I have also invested more time in social networking which I have been recently working on. It is slowly working and I am learning alot of new things.

I am also in search of my niche. I will be doing alot of experimenting this winter with hand coloring, using my new Canon S95, landscapes and more. For the most part I love B&W and I really hope I can get the hang of hand coloring. I used to hand color using the traditional darkroom printing techniques then hand colored using oil pencils. But because of where I live (Maine) and the expense of disposing of chemicals I had to give up the traditional methods. But thanks to Dianne Poinski I have a renewed faith to start hand coloring again.

This year I will see how both businesses do and compare at the end of the year.
My 4 p's will get me through the year
Perseverance--Persistence--Patience & Passion

Re evaluating

American Gold Finch

So since I have started Tweeting I have learned alot of things about how I do things. Basically I have to do what is right and what works. Most of the time if you follow your gut it's right. Right? For over a year I have been blogging and I only have a few followers. Who I am grateful to have! But I want more people to learn about me and the adventures I have chosen to take with my 2 businesses. The struggles and successes I contend with constantly.

So to keep it short and sweet. For those of you who are new readers, I have been in the photography business doing Art Festivals for the past 4 years with some success, but not enough. I started a cookie business this year to help with the photography business, (Do Not want to go back to the big box stores!) which had very good results! But who doesn't like a homemade cookie!?

With that said I will be posting weekly on my progress for 2011. My goal with this is I hope to learn for myself and for others the good and or bad of running 2 businesses. I also hope I will get feedback from my readers.

So bare with me, hang tight and I'll take any and all advice you have to offer.

My next blog will be a summary of 2010. Some good and some not so good. See you in a week!

In the meantime out my Website, follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Facebook.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

My 2011 Goals

I'm Working Here

So as we approach the new year and look back on this year, I have to take the time to consider what I need to do to make changes and better my businesses.

I have already created a show schedule for my photography and farmers markets for my cookies. I had to make sure that the 2 schedules wouldn't clash with each other and gave photography more shows of course. I am doing 4 out of state shows this year to help get my photos out there. In fact every show I am doing this year is a new one except for 3. So I hope to attract a whole new customer base. I will also be more aggressive with my marketing and soical media plans. I do have plans to improve my photo product line. I also have several new photo project ideas that I am working on.

This is my year! I have stuggled for several years putting every penny I make right back into my businesses. I have made lots of mistakes and I have learned and observed others to better my businesses. 2011 will be the year to breath slightly, I will always put 120% into my businesses. It is my love, my passion, my life! With Patience, Perservence & Persistance I will be successful!

So as the year progresses I will keep you up to date with my show schedule, marketing and social media plans, new products and my projects. I will also continue to learn to be a better photographer/business person.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

I'm Tweeting!

I have spent the last day or so trying to get Twitter up and running and I am still trying to get the language figured out. I have only made 2 posts at this point and I guess I will just have to keep on posting and trying to get the hang of it all. With that said follow me on Twitter and see how I master the language.

The photograph above are My Boots. That day there was a winter storm and as I often do I go out and start shoveling, because I know that the snow from the roof will fall and double the shoveling time. That day I chose not to. I stayed inside and photographed. Then did double duty later.