The journey to photography as a career for me, was not always a straight one. I have never really had a definitive career in mind. When asked, even as a kid my answer was always changing. One day I wanted to be a doctor, then a lawyer, then a masseuse, a cowgirl, the list goes on...
As I got older and eventually went to college, I changed my major a handful of times. At first I was going to be a medical assistant, then a phlebotomist, then I majored in communications. I was all over the place. As I mentioned in a previous post, I was also on YouTube for a time and had aspirations to be a big YouTuber (kinda glad that didn't work out considering all the controversy going on over there at the moment).
Then I got pregnant and everything changed. Things got clearer and I didn't really care what my career was as long as I was a great mother to my baby girl.
(Photo Credit: Rachel Jay of France Photographers)
Flash forward a bit to when I got the mom thing down (took me a minute, talk about an adjustment), I found myself struggling again with what to do for a career. Now, I am very blessed that I do not have to work. My husband makes enough that I could be a stay at home mom, which I love and feel very lucky that I even have the option to do this kind of soul searching.
But I couldn't help but feel like I needed something for myself. Something where I'm not someone's wife, or someone's mom, but something where I was simply, Christina.
I'll be honest, I have no idea how or why it took me so long to realize that I wanted to be a photographer. I've always been known to take a lot of pictures and I mean, A LOT. I have photo album after photo album and hard drive after hard drive, filled with photographs. I love photos and the ability they give to travel back to a time or place and the feelings they can evoke. It was always something I did for fun, almost without thinking. Not to mention, I have been told time and time again that I would make a good photographer but I always laughed it off. It's just been a part of me and my personality and some how I never connected the dots that it could be my career. Maybe I thought it would be too hard or maybe I thought that I didn't have what it takes or maybe it was just too intimidating. I really don't know, but what I do know, is that when that thought finally occurred to me, it was like lightning.
I have never been more excited or terrified at the idea of starting a career. I believe it is because for once, it is something that I truly care about. The ability to photograph people and their lives, is a huge honor to me. It gets me excited and gives me butterflies.
I love that there is power in photography. Not only in the printed photo but in making people feel beautiful. I know for some, photos are not their favorite thing, they hide from the camera scared of what they may discover about themselves when they see the image. However, nothing is more rewarding to me than when a client tells me that I made them feel beautiful. I love to see when clients get excited about their images instead of nervous.
When my mother passed away, I realized life is too short to hide from the camera. You may not like having your picture taken, and thats okay, but it is important for those we love to have images of us. Not only while we are still here but after we are gone too.
There are so many ways that I believe photography is important. Honestly, I could be here for hours trying to describe every way. But for now, I'll leave you with the important ones I listed above.
As for me & my inspiration and why I love and choose to do what I do. I can't really explain it. It is a feeling, a fire, a passion that's been ignited and won't go out.
I hope that gives some insight into why I chose to start a photography business and why I love what I do! If you haven't already, be sure to follow me on instagram (@christinaaikophotography) and like my Facebook page (Facebook.com/christinaaikophotography) for more! I hope to see you on my next post!