Flashback to 2009, we're both brand - spankin' new to being in business for ourselves. Separately, we each decided to visit a meeting with the Greater Rochester Professional Photographers. I don't know if we were "friends at first sight," but we now know, we met for a reason. Within 6 months of meeting each other, we knew we had something good together. Flash forward to today - we have each other, our business, education and a great group of photographer friends to lean on for support. Lori and I have learned so much from being members of GRPP, not just from the educational programs but from other members as well. As new photographers to the Rochester NY area, we had a lot to learn. Even now 4 years later, we still have much to learn! It's been so great to have this network of people to grow with and learn from.
Had it not been for this organization, and it's open arms to us - who knows where Lori and I might be today. You might be wondering, "really? aren't you all competition?" At first when I joined, that was my concern. But now I realize that no, we're not - as each of us has our our network of clients, our own referral base, and our own way of doing business, that's different from the next member. It's our goal to increase the knowledge of everyone in the group - as a rising tide raises all ships.
So, all that being said - Lori and I have been a part of the Greater Rochester Professional Photographers for just about 4 years. Having gained so much from the group, we chose to give back. So, Lori kicked it off by joining the board as Treasurer 3 years ago. She kind of got a head start on me. I jumped on board two years ago as an unofficial "social chairperson," then as the Programs Director last year.
This year, we're taking on even bigger roles. Lori has become our newest Vice President, in charge of finding us awesome programs for 2014. And me? I've moved up to President. I know that I have big shoes to fill, as our previous President (Pat Luke of Luke Photography) rocked it.
Of course, when I mentioned that to him, his advice to me was: "Wear your own flip flops and be yourself." Hmmmm, a new motto to live by perhaps?
We're so thankful for this wonderful group. We've gained everything from business knowledge, to new shooting techniques. But most importantly to us, we've gained friendships that we'll carry with us always.
Here's a few images from our most recent Holiday party... join us for a meeting next time won't you?