Adiós 2016, Feliz Año Nuevo 2017
Farewell 2016, Happy New Year 2017. What an incredible year it’s been. We have so much to be thankful for this past year and so much to be proud of. I have learned so much, especially over the past few months which allowed us to end the year with a bang! 2016 has been the most successful year in my 7 years of business and I cannot wait to see what 2017 has in store for us.
2016 was the year of never ending renos at Halifax Boudoir. Part of the reason for moving back to the Armdale space was to invest more in the space we owned rather than rented. There’s nothing worse than putting a ton of money into making a space beautiful, and then leaving it a year later. #lessonslearned So we decided to use most of the profit from 2016 to beautify our indoor and outdoor living spaces.
The first thing we did was add a huge new window in what used to be the studio bedroom area. And by huge, I literally mean the entire wall is a window. It was perfect because we didn’t get a lot of light in that part of the studio as the window we had was so small. But now, there is so much light coming in and it makes for such beautiful photos. We ended up moving the bedroom out of that area, because we needed that plain wall to shoot on and we got tired of having to move the bed and mirror all the time, so we moved the bedroom into the old bedroom (front of the house) where there is windows on either side. Give us 6 months and we’ll change everything around again.
After the window, we asked #contractorBob (Jenn’s Dad) to build a pergola over the back deck. Since we spent so much time from May-October shooting in the back yard, it was a natural progression to include an outdoor living space that we could incorporate into our regular sessions. After a lot of blood, sweat and swears, it was finally completed and it looks amazing. We can’t wait to see how it looks next year with all the wisteria in bloom.
And finally, we completely removed the kitchen from the main area of the house and built a small galley kitchen in the former furnace/laundry room. For someone that rarely cooks at home, it made more sense to move it out of the way so we could use that space for the studio office.
In 2017 we have only a few renos we’ll ask #contractorBob for, if he doesn’t kill us first. haha. #thatsWhatDadsAreFor
In 2016 we added some new members to the team, while other members moved on in their careers. Our makeup artist Gardenia moved to Toronto to further her career and our Studio Manager Emma moved into more of a super casual, as needed basis.
So we brought on Jenny, who graduated from the makeup and cosmetology program at Eastern College in March, and our new Studio Manager/Assistant Megan who started with us in May.
Thank you ladies for making this the best year yet!
This year we were interviewed by several magazines and newspapers, some of which included the CBC, Chronicle Herald, Halifax Magazine, Optimize Magazine. You can read up on those articles here: http://halifaxboudoir.ca/media/
Most exciting for us was the awareness campaign that we started in December. We are doing a huge social media ad campaign, but we also started advertising on Halifax Transit busses which led to an interview with CBC magazine, BodyPositivity.com (currently in the works) and some new bookings.
Name Change (again)
We made the decision to incorporate the business in December, and are now officially Halifax Boudoir Inc. This is the last name change, we promise :p
In 2016 we really focused on stepping up our game and spent a lot of time learning from other photographers. We enrolled in several online boudoir photography workshops with some of boudoir’s most well known photographers – Christa Meola (we took this workshop a second time as there was just so much to take in), the Boudoir Divas and of course Denise Birdsong’s Stripped Down workshop.
In October I flew to New York city to take part in a 3 day in person workshop with Denise Birdsong – principle photographer and creative director at Modern Love Photography and Stripped Down. Nothing could prepare me for this workshop. It was literally the most eye opening experience I’ve ever had and it will affect my photography career for years to come. I met so many amazing people and I am forever grateful for this incredible experience.
Business Goals for 2017
Our goals for 2017 are pretty similar to the ones we had in 2016. Increased advertising budget is one of our number one goals as it really affected our bottom line for 2016. And of course professional development is another one that I think will be on our list for many years to come.
I have already booked a retreat with Denise Birdsong/Stripped Down at her amazing studio in California and I really can’t wait for this one. We enrolled in her online boudoir workshop after taking the in person workshop and I find that it’s really helped us grow as boudoir photographers. The retreat in California will be for Stripped Down alumni and I’m looking forward to seeing my New York family again!
Another goal that is very important for us is to work smarter, not harder in 2017. As much as I love my clients, staff and my business – it can get very overwhelming sometimes. Mistakes are made, you start to hate going to work and wonder if the stress is worth it. A few weeks ago I met with another photographer to chat about business and he made so many great recommendations, one of them being outsourcing the things you just don’t want to do. Megan, I think you’re to do list just got a little longer. haha.
Finally, 2017 will be all about empowering women to love their bodies now. We wish more women would come into our studio feeling like they do when they leave our studio, but I think we (as women) have a lot more work to do with feeling comfortable in our own skin before that happens. This year, we want to break the mold and empower women of all sizes to be free to love themselves and of course, some and show off their confidence with Halifax Boudoir!
Personal Goals for 2017
Travel, relaxation and being more financially responsible. Wait, did I just say that? Who am I? Another year closer to 40 is making me think more like an adult which means less frivolous spending and more saving. OK, seriously, who is writing this post because it’s certainly not me. :p
Travel and relaxation go together like whiskey and ginger ale and I’d really love to do more of all of that in 2017. Perhaps this year we can all take a couple weekends off and enjoy this beautiful province we have.
What are your goals for 2017? Leave them in the comments below!