We had the good fortune of connecting with Elyssa Bell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Elyssa, what is the most important factor behind your success?
For me, everything started with a passion I had for photography. I grew up with my mom being a role model, always with a camera in her hand everywhere we went. I quickly found interest in it and just grew from there. I originally started of photographing nature, but it quickly turned into being the family photographer at events. Once I realized how happy people were with my photos, I decided to start my own business and move more towards portrait photography.
The most important factor behind my success is all based off my clients. If I can’t make them happy, I’m not doing my job the way I want. I want to provide beautiful and unique photos that families and friends cherish for a lifetime. When someone is in front of the camera, nothing else in the world matters. My clients have this glow that you don’t always notice in everyday life and seeing their big happy smiles truly means the world to me. Being able to be part of these moments is why I started my own business and is what I strive to continue to do as I grow!
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I started my photography business back in 2017 when I finally decided to share my work with the world. I’ve never been the type of person who likes to put the spotlight on myself and would usually prefer to hide in the corner. My family pushed me to show off my photos because they really thought they were good. I finally took their advice and created social media accounts to post my photos on. I wanted to start a portfolio and just hope people didn’t hate my photos. Social media is hard to navigate, and to this day I still don’t quite understand it! I’m not very tech savvy, but I would like to think I know how to at least use hashtags, post photos and get a few likes here and there!
My goal with my business was to share my photos and show potential clients why my photos are different from other photographers. I’ve never been into the super crazy editing techniques that make your teeth bright white, skin super soft and taking out unwanted blemishes or marks. I love to show natural beauty and pure smiles. It’s what makes my photos stand out. With my editing style, I use natural lighting and very little editing. All my photos go through a post production, but it’s just enough to brighten the photos, make the darks darker and the brights brighter. A lot of photographers today use filters and aim for that “airy” and “fairytale” look to their photos. Now it may work for them, and I know a lot of people who like that editing style. That’s just not the style that represents me as a photographer or a person.
My business is still growing and throughout the process, everyday is something new. Just when you think you’ve figured it all out, something right around the corner pops up and throws a curveball. It makes growing a business so exciting!
The best advice I can give people regarding starting their own business is to not to give up. Starting a business takes hard work and a whole lot of investing both emotionally, physically and financially. Just like life, it is a rollercoaster of emotions. It’s taken me about 5 years to finally see the desirable outcome I’ve been looking for in my photography business. It’ll take some time for sure, but oh so worth it! This is just the beginning!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Outside of photography, I’m a HUGE lover of adventure and the outdoors. Arizona is the perfect state to go outside and explore, as long as you don’t visit during the summer time! I would take them on a hike probably over in the Superstitions. I love trail running and hiking and this area is truly incredible.
Hidden waterfalls, technical trails, wildlife and sketchy bouldering. If you’re my friend, you need to be up to do some crazy adventures 😅
Coffee is a must as well, so any local coffee shop will do, although I’ve had a kick for Black Rock recently!
I’ve always enjoyed Agritopia over in Gilbert, AZ. It’s such a relaxing and calm vibe full of laughter, fun and great food!
And what’s a day without playing with dogs!? A walk around the park with our crazy dogs would end the day.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My mom was my biggest role model growing up and the main reason why I took up photography in the first place. She bought me my first camera, supported me as I learned the ways of working a camera and pushed me to keep practicing and learning how to become the person I strive to be.
The continued love and support from my family, friends and current clients deserve a shout out as well. My business wouldn’t be where it’s at without their help and feedback. I truly love every single one of them!
Facebook: Elyssa Bell Photography