Sarah Martin has been an entrepreneur for over a decade. In light of this, each month we speak with exceptional women entrepreneurs in the Twin Cities Metropolitan area. What are they passionate about? What drives them to be successful? What tips can they give us to start our own businesses? Each Beauty in the Chaos feature takes a look at behind the scenes of each of these gals’ lives.
This month, we interviewed Trish Burtzel, owner of Trish Allison Photography, where she specializes in lifestyle, wedding and motherhood photography. Trish opened her business full-time this spring (yay!), and she shares her passion for capturing life’s precious moments with us.
How did you get into photography?
I’ve had an interest in photography as long as I can remember. I was always the person with the camera growing up, so in high school I took my first photography class as an elective. I continued traditional photography education in college as a minor, while I majored in Marketing with the intention of creative marketing being my career path. Once I graduated I started taking photos of family and friends, and then through referrals and the power of social media, my business grew slowly and organically. It wasn’t until 2017 that I really started to invest in my business and that’s when things took off. April of 2018 I was able to leave my full-time job in Marketing to pursue photography full time.
What makes you passionate about it?
My mom was diagnosed with Stage 4 Breast Cancer when I was 9 years old and has battled it without ever having a day in remission for the last 18 years. Growing up with a sick parent has forever shaped me and the way I view photography. Never knowing what family photo may be the last has inspired me in the best way possible to take the most timeless of photos for my clients. Time goes by so quickly, and I love that I can give my clients a raw, real and candid snapshot into this time of their life.
What’s your favorite part of owning Trish Allison Photography?
I specialize in photography for life’s first adult milestones: engagement, wedding and motherhood photography. I LOVE that these are my clients first family heirlooms. They’re often very emotionally connected to this short-lived period in their life and the finished product is a tangible memory forever. I love gallery delivery day – it brings my clients so much joy. Receiving their letters of appreciation after the project is complete makes my job SO worth it!
Do you have a favorite shoot that you’ve done? And if so, could you provide a photo?
There are SO many shoots that I have loved, and all for different reasons. It’s too difficult to pick a favorite! However, I did a newborn shoot recently that stands out to me. They were first-time parents and were just really relishing in all the joys that come with the learning process of welcoming their newborn. There was VERY little posing. It was truly a day-in-the-life snapshot of their new life. Their adorable golden retriever also stole the show, gotta love a puppy sibling!
The dad was initially hesitant to invest in newborn photography. Once the session was over, the mom sent a letter saying that once the gallery was delivered, he admitted the photos were SO worth it, special, and will forever be cherished AND that he was looking forward to doing a couple more sessions with me this year. That was just the cherry on top 🙂
What are 3 pieces of advice you’d tell women who are looking to start their own business?
- Have confidence in yourself and in your work! Never undervalue yourself or give discounts, even if you’re just starting out. As women, we tend to be people pleasers, but have the confidence in knowing that you bring a value to your clients and that you are WORTH IT!
- The motto I practice EVERY DAY is to always under promise and over deliver. In my industry, it’s telling clients they’ll receive their images in 4 weeks, when really I know I will be delivering them in 7 days. Or even a hand written “welcome” note, or some chocolates as a thank you! WOW your clients with exceptional service. They’ll come back for more and sing your praises to others!
- Outsource, outsource, outsource. As a business owner you’ll be forced to wear many hats. Outsource projects that others could do better than you. Your time and energy will be best served in your areas of expertise, so if that’s not marketing, accounting, contract writing, etc., hire a professional to help you. Outsourcing changed my business. I spent less time trying to figure out how to do everything and more time accepting new clients and making money!
We LOVE this advice. Thank you for the interview, Trish! Make sure to check out Trish’s site, Trish Allison Photography — she does amazing work!