Today we’d like to introduce you to Monika Normand.
Monika, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve loved taking photos for as long as I can remember. I used to take a disposable camera outside and photograph flowers in my mom’s garden when I was little. Although I loved photography and art, I went to college for wildlife biology, since I thought it was safer to pursue a career in a scientific field and I loved being outside and working with animals. While I was in college, I started taking photos for high school seniors and offering small family sessions for friends on the side. I photographed my first wedding in 2014 and realized I could make a business out of doing something that I genuinely loved. I never wanted to sit in an office from 9-5, and photography allowed for me to pursue a career where I could work anywhere I wanted and allowed time for me to do volunteer work with animals.
In January 2017, when my boyfriend and I moved from Massachusetts to Dallas for his new job opportunity, and I wasn’t sure how to build my business in a new location where I didn’t know anyone. I reached out to local wedding vendors, met other talented photographers and business owners, and with what feels like sheer luck, I’ve been able to build a client base here in Dallas that I am so proud of. I now travel between Dallas and Massachusetts to serve my clients in both areas. I love variety, so being able to combine corporate photos, events, headshots, and business marketing here in Dallas, along with weddings and portraits in the New England area is like a dream come true. I love working with new people, capturing raw moments, creating art, and making my clients’ visions come to life. I’ve been able to experience so many fun events in Dallas and meet so many incredible people here that I never could have dreamed of if I hadn’t moved to Texas. I’m incredibly grateful for everyone who helped me build my business to where it is today and I’m excited to see where it goes in the next few years.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Building a client base large enough to support my business full time is an ongoing challenge. I worked as an executive assistant for five years before quitting my job to pursue my business full time. Taking that leap was incredibly scary, difficult, and exciting. I have grown my client base significantly in the last three years, but I’m constantly thinking of ways to make new connections, find new clients, and fulfill a unique niche in the photography world.
In addition to building a large client base, learning to live off of and be okay with a seasonal business and fluctuating income is very challenging. I am a very organized person who loves planning, so learning to deal with the unknowns has been a struggle for me. But, I think it is helping me become a better person and has forced me to learn to change myself in ways that I most definitely needed.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Monika Normand Photography – what should we know?
Monika Normand Photography specializes in weddings, portraits, business branding, and event photography. My editing style is vibrant and bright, yet true to life, and I think that sets me apart from other photographers who specialize in different styles. I’ve been developing a niche market of business branding sessions for local businesses in need of high-quality images for their website, marketing, and social media pages. I take the time to learn about a business owner’s brand, vision, style, and overall personality to make sure that I capture these unique elements during our sessions to best highlight their work. Most photographers specialize in weddings only, or events/corporate only, but I think being able to offer a variety of services also sets me apart from others. Clients who have built a relationship with me through one type of session (like a professional headshot session) are often happy and relieved to know that I can help them in other aspects (such as a wedding or elopement). Being a photographer isn’t entirely about taking beautiful images, it’s important to provide a good experience. I pride myself on my clients feeling comfortable, confident, loved, and well cared for.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
I think being adaptable and the ability to connect with people of all types has hands down been my greatest asset/ most helpful characteristic. I also genuinely care about all my clients feeling important, relaxed and comfortable with me. The ability to make people laugh while also being professional has helped me connect with owners of global companies, political figures, shy couples, crazy kids, strange uncles at your wedding, you name it!
- Website: https://monikanormandphoto.com/
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @monika_normand_photo
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/monikanormandphotography/
Monika Normand Photography