One of the biggest things I have done for my business in the past year is invest in education and building a community. One of the best educators that I have learned from is Hope Taylor.
Earlier this year I went to her house for the filming of her Senior Posing and Experience Course. If you are a senior photography, you NEED this course. It was a game changer!
Every year she hosts an alumni retreat for those in her education community and I was able to attend this year!! It was hosted at the beautiful Noelle hotel in Nashville, TN. Around 24 photographers flew and drove in from all around the country for a weekend of learning, shooting, and building community.
My one word for 2018 is CULTIVATE and workshops like this are the perfect place to cultivate new friendships and skills! I reunited with friends from the filming weekend and met new friends that I swear are my soul sisters.
We started our weekend off with a group dinner and late night heart-to-heart session with yummy cakes from Nothing Bundt Cakes where we talked about the biggest challenges we are facing in our businesses. The next morning we were greeted with the cutest gift boxes from Wish and Pink and doughnuts from Five Daughter’s Bakery, and we dove right into learning!
Hope talked through a ton of topics including passive income, emails, lead captures, education, and more. I love listening to what she and other people are doing in their businesses because it always sparks such excitement and creativity in mine!
While we went downstairs to have lunch at Make Ready, Mariah of Blush & Crew flipped our learning space into a beautiful styled shoot of seniors and weddings! IT WAS TO DIE FOR. I was able to get so many beautiful shots that I will be posting two additional posts to share those images!
While we were shooting, Hope worked with each of us 1-1 with our business challenges. I loved having the opportunity to chat with her and get to know her on a more personal level.
From there we took a quick nap in our room (one of my favorite parts about the Noelle!!!) and headed to dinner at Fin and Pearl, where I had the BEST cocktail.
On our last day, we had brunch at Henrietta Red and said our goodbyes through teary eyes.
I am so thankful Hope put together this event for us to get to spend time with not only her, but a group of like-mind photographers who are all going through the same things. I used to be on this journey alone, not because I didn’t want to be but because it’s hard to find other people who are taking the leap like you are. I’ve really been focusing on building into my community this year and it is paying off, especially when I leave retreats like this one!!
Thank you Hope!!!
A special thank you to the styled shoot vendors and team who helped make this event happen:
Y’all. If you go to Nashville, you HAVE to go to this hotel. It is the nicest hotel I have ever stayed in. The staff was so accommodating. The rooms were big and beautiful. There was a rooftop bar, a speakeasy in the basement, a restaurant downstairs, AND a coffee shop. It was a dream.
After learning, it was on to shooting!!! Starting with Hope 🙂
Then it was our turn! We had different stations and my group started with seniors first. They were SO sweet and I loved their dresses!
Anything for the shot! Don’t be surprised when your photographer tries to join under your veil with you. It’s worth it, I promise.
Hope spent a few minutes with each of us to get our headshots. Mine are below!
We also took a few fun shots of each other. You just can’t put a bunch of photographers in a bright, white room and expect them to NOT take full advantage.
Thank you Megan Holley for this shot!
Amanda doing her thing showing the bride how to pose.
Caitlin was also part of our little group –– she and I actually met online through one of Hope’s groups and were so excited to meet in person at the retreat!
Here’s how the beautiful veil shots are made!!!
Alllllll the details.
Megan is so silly. She was one of my roommates and let me tell you, she is a TRUE hustler!! Keep your eyes open for this girl. She’s doing big things!
Thank you Hope for putting this retreat together and constantly sharing your heart and experiences with everyone in our little community. You are the BEST!!!
I’m Dakota, a Wilmington, NC-based photographer Helping engaged couples feel comfortable in front of the camera and creative businesses grow with purposeful brand imagery.
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