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Life and Work with Haili Wright

Today we’d like to introduce you to Haili Wright.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I’ve always had a passion for photography! In 2014, I was gifted my first DSLR from my dad for Christmas. I instantly immersed myself in photography education (aka, YouTube), began practicing and asking to take photos of friends and family. I used the money I made from my first summer of family sessions to invest in Lightroom and some better equipment and started practicing even harder. I fell in love with everything about it, including the business aspect. I worked my tail off as a part-time waitress for five years while trying to grow my photography business. 2019 was a HARD year, trying to balance life with a toddler, a part-time evening job, editing, emails, etc. In December of last year, the restaurant I worked at announced they would be closing, and I ultimately made the decision to launch myself 100% into my business instead of looking for another part-time job. Now I’m a full-time photographer and I’m loving every season of this career that I’ve built for myself!

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
My biggest struggle was finding my own consistent style. In the world of Instagram, it’s easy to play the comparison game and get really discouraged about your own work. Eventually, I just began shooting and editing in ways that felt most natural. I began receiving several compliments from my clients and others that they loved the way I edited because it wasn’t too heavy. That’s when I knew I was on the right path and I needed to STAY on that path. I realized I had been distracting myself trying to edit exactly like other photographers I aspired, but really my clients were coming back to me because they loved MY work, not another photographer’s work. I think my biggest advice for starting out is to focus on what works for YOU and be proud of your style!

Please tell us about Haili Wright Photography.
I started off photographing anything and everything. I would take ANY job that came my way. Over the course of a few years, I tried really hard to become a wedding photographer. Well after several failed marketing attempts trying to stand out in a VERY competitive crowd with a small portfolio, I began focusing more on families. Family photography truly has my heart. After having my own baby, relating to my clients and their kids got SO much easier and less stressful. I also love working with couples and still take on a select few weddings each year. I believe what sets me apart is the experience I give my clients. I truly pour my heart into the wonderful friends who support my business, and give back to them in any way that I can!

Often it feels as if the media, by and large, is only focused on the obstacles faced by women, but we feel it’s important to also look for the opportunities. In your view, are there opportunities that you see that women are particularly well positioned for?
I think there are several opportunities for women. Women are creative, smart, hard workers, artistic, strong, and are well-equipped to accomplish anything they set their hearts on.

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