Distinguished Studio Of The Month – August – Moments With MJ

Tell us about yourself! We’d love to hear about your family, hobbies, and favorite food- tell us about your favorite things!

Well, I have a wonderful husband who is so supportive of me and my photography business. I have 5 teenage children and 3 puppies under 3. I also enjoy creating a mini farm-style life here at our home. So yes I have chickens haha. My favorite things are my photography, my family and my pets.

What is your favorite thing about being a photographer?

I always thought that Boudoir was going to be an artistic thing I did every now and again. I never thought I could do this full-time and make women feel amazing about themselves.

What is the name of your company?

Moments With MJ

Talk to us about your life pre-photography (if applicable). Did you have a day job? Do you still have that day job? If not, when did you quit? If you did have a day job prior to becoming a full time photographer, what did you learn from your day job? Are there any lessons you learned that carried over into your photography business? Tell us the story that got you to where you are today!

I have always lived 2 separate career lives. I entered the wedding industry when I was 13 and have always loved that. I created many businesses throughout the years that were in the wedding industry. IIn 2009 I began a successful event planning business, but when I got married in 2016 I needed a change and thought of what else I could do.

So I became a weekend wedding photographer. Mainly doing family sessions and weddings I was excited when in 2019 I had the chance to flip another photographer’s children’s studio. I thought I knew that was what I wanted my studio to be like. My husband built me a beautiful studio at our home and we were all ready to open in March 2020. During the week I always had a career in finance & insurance.

I left my 10-year position at the insurance agency in Feb of 2020 to open up my photography studio and go full-time. Well, the world closed down and I began to think and learn more about boudoir photography. We opened back up in June and by Nov 2020 my photography was 85% boudoir. I have not looked back since. I love this industry. The biggest lesson would be how to run a successful office and business. I learned how to work with people and most of the back-end work for a business.

Can you tell us more about your photography business prior to joining Mastermind, what you did when you started, previous genres shot, clients per month/year, last calendar year revenue, IPS involvement, and average sale?

So I joined the Mastermind in April 2021 this was a huge deal for me. We did not really have the money but again when I presented this program to my husband he was so supportive and told me lets make it work. I had only been shooting Boudoir for about 6 months and I was super basic. My sets were really white and plain. lol I was not doing IPS until Masterminds and I was only selling about $500 per client. I was still new to Boudoir so I think I had about 8 clients in 2020 which was fantastic for me. My prices were very low, I was your average shoot and burn photographer charging $1500 per wedding. Mastermind changed EVERYTHING for me and my business.


Can you share some details about your work after joining Mastermind, including the first thing implemented, the current genre being shot, clients per month/year, YTD and monthly revenue, IPS involvement, average sale, and most purchased items by clients (digital, albums, or wall art)?

The first thing I changed was my studio and having different sets. Then I change my prices and treated my business as a million-dollar business. I knew if I did not fake it till I made it nothing would change. I still shoot families and weddings but 90% of my business is Boudoir. My weddings went from $1500 to $6500 each. I take only 6 weddings a year and shoot boudoirs during the week. I like to schedule at least 2 sessions a week. For 2022 we made over $75K and we grow with each year. Most of my clients spend about $3000 and mainly purchase albums and cute gift items.


Do you have support staff? If so, tell us about them! For example- how many photographers, HMUAs, assistants, managers, etc. do you employ?

For now, it is just me running everything for the business and I have my make-up artist during a session. My goal for 2023 is to get a social media manager and a studio manager.


How much revenue total has your studio brought in since joining Mastermind?

From 2021 we have made about $125K


What is your advice to photographers just starting out? What is your advice to photographers who are full-time and struggling? Remember your own journey – what were your biggest struggles and what you wish someone had told you? 🙂 

My struggles are in my own head for the most part. When I see a low in leads or sales I take it personally and I am working on not doing that. There have been times even this past year when I did not want to be creative with social media or push myself but I have to keep pushing. and I would tell a new photographer to keep pushing. Get a friend or buddy you can talk to and bounce things off them, its a HUGE help. Having people to support you who know what you have to do in the industry is critical. Get a great coach.


What areas do you still want to grow in? Do you have any big goals that you are still looking to accomplish?

My prices are in the middle of the pricing guide, but I would love to raise my prices this year. My minimum right now is $599. I would also like to see an increase in my bookings.


What is your biggest accomplishment – work and non-work related? Since your studio became successful, what is the coolest thing you’ve been able to do?

I feel like I have completely come out of my shell and wrapped everything I ever wanted to do in life, wrapped all in Boudoir. Makeup, beauty, fashion, and self- empowerment. It is all rolled in my boudoir business. I love to know that I help women love themselves, (because that is something I struggle with myself).


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