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Conversations with the Inspiring Heatherley Doan

Today we’d like to introduce you to Heatherley Doan.

Heatherley, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
So I was always that girl with a camera in high school. I still have my darkroom equipment! But in 2009, I decided to upgrade my film camera to a Digital. I started to photograph children and families and my business kept growing. I was always interested in weddings but wanted to make sure I knew more about the business side of things before I took them on.

After a whole year (2015)of being a 2nd shooter for other photographers, I finally was ready to take them on. I was able to quit my mortgage career around that time and do photography full time. In 2016 I then started a T-shirt line for Photographers and trademarked Photog Life. Shortly after I realized that I enjoyed helping other photographers and started to mentor. I had such a hard time starting out and really wished there had been more creatives willing to help or mentor so this fueled my passion even more. In 2017, my husband received an amazing opportunity to move here to Colorado. I spent most of my life growing up in Jacksonville Beach, Florida so this was a big change. I had to start by photography business all over. I have been very fortune to still do what I love and the weddings just keep coming. It’s now 2020 and I am doing more weddings than I ever imagined while mentoring photographers to help them grow their photography from a hobby to a legal business.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It was so hard. In 2009, social media was different. Facebook didn’t have groups like it does today. For some reason, even though I was will to pay for a mentor or coach, no one seemed interested in helping. Now, don’t get me wrong. I do not think everything should be smooth, but I just wish there had been more resources. I know that almost every industry has competition, but if there are more resources available it can help keep people inline with industry standards.

The best advice I can give today is to network. Never expect success too soon. Meet people. Be authentic instead of eager. I feel like it is very important to take a marketing or business course and really research your industry before you just dive into it. I think I expected my business to take off (both the photography and T-Shirt line) and it took awhile for my brand to be known. I also believe it’s okay to make mistakes. If you do, just learn from them and always take notes. My last advice to give yourself realistic goals. If you don’t set goals for yourself, you may fail. And in any job, you have to meet your goals. So never lose site of that.

What should we know about Heatherley Bloom Photography? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I am professional wedding and portrait photographer, a mentor to photographers and also run a clothing line for photographers. Weddings are something I just love to shoot but I won’t lie. Kids bring me so much joy! I love their little personalities and love to photograph them just as much. In Florida the weddings were just starting to grow so I was more known for photographing families and children. However, when I moved to Colorado the wedding doors just opened. So I would say that I am more known for weddings now. I am also known for my mentoring in the Photography world and of course my T-shirt line. I think that I am proud of my brand because I am real. I am extremely silly but know when to be professional. I am very passionate about what I do and my reputation means everything to me. I believe what sets me apart from others is that I am genuine and fun. I legit make sure my clients know, we will have fun! I want to see their true self in my work. I will never take client if I truly feel I am not right for them. So, yes I have turned down opportunities because I want what is best for them, even if that means referring them out. In Florida, I was really known for networking, not just for myself but for others. I love connecting the right people together.

Looking back on your childhood, what experiences do you feel played an important role in shaping the person you grew up to be?
I absolutely do! It may seem funny but I was Co-Captain on my flag and dance team in 10th grade and Captain by 11th grade. I always felt the passion to lead others and help them. I was always friends with everyone in high school. I never really felt like I was a part of a ‘group.” I looked at that as a positive. So being a leader in high school, I feel it got me prepared for other jobs and positions I would have later in life. Now of course running my own business and mentoring others.

Pricing:

  • Wedding Packages start at $2600

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Alyssum Hutchinson

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