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Meet Missy Burton in McKinney

Today we’d like to introduce you to Missy Burton.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I am a Texas transplant. I was born in Tulsa, OK into a family of creatives. Since I was born into a family of artists there is not a moment in my life that I can remember where I wasn’t a creative. As a multifaceted artist, I have experience in music, theatre, poetry & visual arts. I have been working as a visual artist for about 3 years now.

It all started in my grandparent’s living room where weekend parties with their friends meant that I and my little brother & cousins were going to be the entertainment. We would play our favorite songs and sing and dance and they would cheer us on like we were performing at a concert. Then when I was around 5 my grandfather gave me a camera. It was a Polaroid instamatic. The kind where the picture instantly came out and you had to wait a minute for the picture to appear. The thing I’ve always loved about photography is I could always freeze moments in time that I wanted to keep. As a little girl, freezing time was my superpower. My grandfather was a photographer but he only liked taking pictures of my grandmother. Well sometimes he liked taking pictures of the grandchildren but mostly it was my grandmother. As I got older, me and my family and friends started forming various bands and performing here and there. In my 20s, I began my career as a singer/songwriter. I recorded and released 4 CDs as an independent artist and performed with my band. As I continued with my music career I was led to the theater where I not only wrote 2 stage plays but I also scored, co-directed and acted as well. At some point I looked down and realized I still had my camera through it all and decided that I wanted to pursue photography full time. So about 15 years ago I started my photography business here in McKinney, TX where my focus was on portraits and weddings. After the first year of weddings I quickly realized that was really hard work and not really gratifying to me as an artist. I did however love doing portraits but as I continued to explore creative photography and working with lights and post production it was really clear to me that what I wanted to do with my camera had little to do with formality and everything to do with me expressing myself as an artist. So on December 31, 2014, I made the decision to walk away from my formal portrait business and focus on the business of being a visual artist. It was hard for me to walk away from paying clients and steady work but it was so invigorating to be able to explore my craft without boundaries. Today I am completely happy with my decision. I still maintain a small client list of those who desire portraiture but allow me creative control. I have completed 3 series of art collections entitled, Butterfly, Where There’s Smoke and I Am Woman. Butterfly was my first solo exhibit in 2016 and I am currently preparing for my second solo exhibit entitled I Am Woman which is a body of work that explores the powerful complexity of the female essence using black & white photography and poetry. The artist reception will be held at The McKinney Performing Arts Center on October 6th from 6-9p. The works will be on display through October 13th.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I think the hardest thing for me has been work/life balance. In addition to being an entrepreneur I have a husband and 3 children as well as a full time job. Although the kids are grown up now it wasn’t always that way. It’s tough finding the balance between family time, work time and creative time. There have been times when all of my lives have collided and it wasn’t pretty. The main thing is keeping your priorities straight. For me it has always been God, Me, Family and everything else. As long as I keep my priorities straight everything always works out. Deadlines & opportunities come and go but I only get one shot at this life and I only get one family.

Missy Burton – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I am a visual artist with an extraordinary talent for capturing raw photos and transforming them into timeless pieces for display suitable for home, work or office. I completed a series of art collections entitled, Butterfly, Where’s the Smoke and I am Woman. I want my work to ignite inspiration for change within the world and provide a sense of appreciation for the natural beauty of the Earth. Each piece that I create has been carefully contoured and designed to reflect some form of life meaning or to tell a story. Whether I’m shooting butterflies or still life there is a piece of my soul in every piece I create. I am most proud of the work I do giving back to the local community by mentoring young aspiring artists.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success is doing the thing you love the most for a living.

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