Wow... it's hard believe that I first discovered my love of photography 10 years ago today. What an amazing ride it's been so far! I've been reminiscing on the past 10 years and I'm so grateful for all of the memories I've made, experience I've gained, awesome people I've met, and moments I've been honored to capture!
Here's a look back at the last 10 years...
May 1st, 2011 - It was my senior year of high school. I was getting ready to attend Onondaga Community College in the fall and major in graphic design. My mom wanted some updated "nice" photos of me to use on my graduation invitations. So, I got dressed up and we had a photoshoot in the backyard with my mom taking pictures of me on my point and shoot camera. I uploaded the photos to the computer and started "editing" them on a photo editing website that was popular back then called "Picnik" (anyone else remember this?? LOL). I thought the photos were AMAZING and totally looked professional (looking back now they are absolutely god awful.... but everyone starts somewhere, right? LOL). I was like "Wow, I could totally do this for a living." I decided that very same day to switch my major to photography and never looked back.
Not long after that, I created a Facebook page for my photography and called it Bex Photography. I was mostly photographing friends, doing "fashion" shoots which was basically just dressing my friends up in weird outfits and slapping gaudy filters over them in Picnik. LOL
August 2011 to May 2013 - I attended Onondaga Community College majoring in photography. The entire first year, we learned only film photography, and I hated it.... so much so, that I almost considered changing my major. My second year, we started to get more into digital photography, but didn't learn much about the technical side of photography or photoshop, which is what I was really interested in.
May 2013 to December 2014 - After I graduated with my Associates Degree in photography, I wasn't sure if I wanted to continue on to get my Bachelor's Degree but I knew I wanted to get some hands on experience in the industry. I interned for a local photographer and gained a lot of great experience.
January 2015 to December 2016 - I was working a 9-5 office job as a photo editor, retouching hundreds of headshots a day for college sororities and fraternities. It was a dead end job and sucked the life out of me. It pushed me to work hard on my own business, so that I could go full time with my photography. Around this time was when I changed my business name from "Bex Photography" to "Rebecca Sheets Photography". I was focusing a lot on photographing high school seniors at the time and started a "senior model team". It didn't really take off like I hoped it would, but we had fun with it any way! At the time, I had just gotten engaged and was starting to plan my own wedding, which peaked my interest in the wedding industry. I had shot a few weddings in 2015, but didn't think it was something that I would want to do full time. In December 2016, I decided to take a leap of faith, and gave my two week notice at my office job to go full time with my business.
2017 - I decided to give weddings another chance, so I reached out to my wedding venue and asked if they needed another in house photographer. They said yes, added me to their team and I shot over 30 weddings that year in my first year going full time! It was a lot of work, but I was loving it!
2018 - I was getting married this year and wedding photography business was in full swing. I shot 40 weddings in the same year that I got married. That year was a blur, to say the least.
2019 - I was still going strong shooting almost 40 weddings again. I hit a milestone of 100 weddings photographed in my career that year. I was so thankful for all of my couples, but also starting to get very burnt out. I knew that I couldn't sustain this many wedding much longer, so I decided go completely out on my own and to cut way back in the amount of weddings I would take on for 2020.
2020 - I was ready and excited for the year! I had about half the weddings booked that I usually did, and I was excited to be able to give a more personalized experience to each and every one of my couples. Then... obviously we all know what happened in 2020.... I wanted to slow down.... welp, I got my wish..... I was blessed to still be able to capture 10 micro weddings in 2020 but by the end of the year, I was ready to get back to some sort of normalcy in the wedding industry. Looking back on that year though, it was just what I needed, time to pause and really work on my brand. I totally rebranded and redid my website which I coincidentally launched on May 1st 2020, exactly 9 years after I started photography!
And that brings us to now! What an amazing experience these last 10 years have been! I am so thankful that I discovered my passion in photography and I'm SO thankful to everyone that has supported and cheered for me along the way! Here's to the next 10!