Tuesday, 4 December 2012


Those of you that know me will know that until last Friday I was, in addition to being a busy wedding photographer, a full time fashion buyer. Juggling the two and essentially having two full time jobs, throughout the busy summer has been really hard and it’s led me to where I am now - self employed.
I always envisaged going self employed in the most sensible manner, with several months salary in my bank account and leaping straight into the wedding season, dashing from event to event. Things don’t always work out like you plan though and so I find myself sitting at my computer typing this on a rainy Monday afternoon my first day as my own boss.
I haven’t been happy in my day job for quite some time, there were too many things to be specific about but it just wasn’t the right place for me. I’ve worked in the head offices of big high street companies like New Look and smaller, more boutique ones like White Stuff and always found elements of it fulfilling and creative – I am, or was, a menswear buyer and have a huge passion for product development, but in this role I always found myself feeling like a failure. I was so unhappy I’d have to dart out of meetings, hiding my tears for fear of crying in front of the junior members of my team. After a particularly bad couple of meetings I decided that life was too short to deal with feeling like that every day, resigned and left much quicker than my notice period.
Juggling two jobs has been a challenge – dealing with a stressful day job and coming home, answering emails, blogging, editing, taking bookings etc took it out of me a bit. Dealing with the madness of one role meant that if things got a bit tricky with my business I couldn’t get any perspective. If someone didn’t like a photo out of the 500 I sent them, I felt like I’d personally let them down which would lead to more tears. I was so thankful for our holiday in October.
 At the end of every wedding season I’ve found myself at a cross roads – which do I pursue? Do I take the safe, corporate route and continue with the job that sounds so glamorous on paper or do I follow my dreams? On my worst days I could never see the wood for the trees andf elt average at best; neither a good photographer nor a buyer. To be honest there was only one real answer, so here I am and I’ve got to make it work. If I wasn’t a bit worried I wouldn’t be human.
I’m looking forward to taking some time out, finally getting a proper marketing strategy together and having no choice but to make this work. I’ll probably need to find a little bit of temporary work in the short term – keep myself in the manner to which I’ve become accustomed (but seriously – is there ever a good time to leave a well paid professional job to strike out alone?) but I have to earn my whole income with my camera now.
2013 is shaping up to be really exciting – I’m getting really busy for the peak summer season and if you’re interested in booking me, particularly if it’s a Saturday then get in touch now. Otherwise, expect to see a lot more from me! 


  1. Well written Ellie - and no, I don't think there's ever a good time to strike out alone, you've just got to do it.
    Here's to a happier future

  2. Yay, congrats, Ellie! I know we chatted about this over coffee and as someone who took the leap definitely without the financial safety net I'd have had in an ideal situation, I think you've definitely done the right thing!

    I ended up handing my notice in earlier than I intended (I had wanted to only have a week between the end of my contract and my first wedding of the season), but, when I went back after the Christmas break I just couldn't stand being there any more and every day that went past not handing my notice in felt like agony! I thought, too, that I'd end up having to get a temp job for the wedding off-season, but, that never happened. It's like, once I had the time, the world kind of opened up, I booked loads more weddings at times I didn't anticipate. I know it's never-wracking, but, for me, it really felt like everything just fell into place once I left my job and oh, do I love waking up and just tottering over to my study and doing work I love.

    Good luck with everything! I'm sure it's going to be great! x