Shannon Atchley – A Photographer Podcast Interview
On this podcast, Kia and Matt interview Shannon Atchley, who is known for her lighting skills. She teaches lighting at the Modern Senior Imagine Conference and is teaching at SYNC next year. Shannon is a photographer in a very small town and says word of mouth is so important. You have to set, and then exceed, expectations. Shannon is fired up about how good people are in our industry and how willing everyone is to help. Shannon didn’t go to conferences until a couple of years ago, but she did participate in online forums (I Love Photography). Shannon would either save the 1k for a Sigma Art 105mm, or spend it on sales education. Or a Denny’s background. You’ll have to listen in to get that inside joke. Don’t miss the best advice Shannon ever “received” and the advice she has to share.
[00:01] They said, Shannon, actually from actually photography and you’re listening to from nothing to profit.
[00:06] Welcome to from nothing to profit a photographer’s podcast with Matt and Kayak where each week they talk to photographers about what is working in their business now so you can swipe those ideas and grow your business faster.
[00:22] Hey everybody, welcome to the podcast. So I’m really excited. I have my friend Shannon Ashley on from northern Alabama and we have a really cool story where we met, I mean it was I guess over a year ago now. We met at after dark, um, and we’ve been fast friends ever since. And so we hung out at sink this year and next year we’re speaking together at sync. And in some aspects I think like you’re like my soulmate of a friend because you’re hilarious and you always make my day brighter and make me laugh pretty hard. So thanks so much for being on the podcast.
[00:57] Well thank you for asking me.
[00:59] Yeah. So Shannon, we are, I’m excited to have you too.
[01:03] Oh, you guys are both great. I’m excited to be here.
[01:06] Yeah. So here’s, let me tell you a little bit more. So it’s kind of, this is how, this is how I met Shannon. So I was, I went to after dark and I was doing like this walk about with Marcy, Marcy and Christy and Shannon was there and I hadn’t met her at all, but she wasn’t, she was there and um, I was talking to Marcy and Marcy is like, yeah, you know, like we’re okay, but have you seen Shannon’s work? And I was like, no, I don’t know who Shannon is. So like as we’re walking around downtown in the middle of Wisconsin, I’m like looking at her Instagram and like dialed lighting, you know, like I would say you’re probably one of the better photographers, Shannon. I’ve ever seen it off. Um, off camera lighting for sure.
[01:41] No. Well thank you. Yeah, I didn’t even realize that. Didn’t realize you were looking at me at after dark except, but they are now. Yeah. But I did not realize that. So that’s, that’s really awesome because you’re so good. You’re in Cape Cod is it’s caught. Yes.
[01:58] Hi. Yes it is fine.
[02:00] Okay. You guys are both great. So that is a huge compliment coming from you. Yeah.
[02:06] Well thanks. Um, okay, so let’s just kind of jump into the questions and kind of go from there.
[02:10] Yeah, yeah, for sure. Huh. So Shannon, we’re going to start at the beginning here. And so, um, can you share a little bit of, uh, like your expertise or what you feel like you’re known for?
[02:22] I feel like I’m acting, I am known for lighting. Um, you mean in the photography world or with the Bobbitt yes, yes. In the photography world. Yeah. I would say it’s sliding. I actually teach lighting at the modern senior. Imagine. Um, I, I guess that’s it. I’ve really never asked anybody, but like, you know, that’s the venue noticed my art when you looked at my work. So I would say that that’s it.
[02:47] And then what about like under your photography? I’d like with your clients? Um, what do you think you’re known for?
[02:53] Well, seniors, senior portrait photography. I’m pretty much known for that in my area. I do still do everything. I’m in such a small town, the high school across the road from my studio graduates like 60 to 70 kids a year. So, and I, I will say we have about seven small schools around in the area that graduate the sign number. But nobody, we just don’t have any big schools. So I’m in such a small town that I’m really the only, which our town is not even incorporated. So when I say the, I’m the only photography studio in town, that’s not really saying a lot, but, but I really am. So I still do everything even though I specialize in senior portrait photography.
[03:35] Okay. So I have a question about that because I didn’t realize your town was so small. Cutting jokes didn’t know about that. So how, so how do you, how do you stay like sharpen on top of it? Like where that internal motivation, because if you’re the only game in town, like it’d be really easy for you to get lazy and just not do my, you know what I mean? Like,
[03:54] well, it really all kind of started last year and I had never been to really anything, any conferences. I’ve been to nothing until I went to saint class chair because my kids were home. They were getting ready for college and I knew that they wouldn’t be there that much long. You know, they would be headed to college soon. And so I wouldn’t go to anything. One time I, I wouldn’t even go to imaging when it was in Nashville, which is about two hours for me. So when I went to sync for the first time last year, it was like an entire new world just opened up for me. And you know, I realized that even though I had learned a lot on my own, I had learned through books and Youtube is, there’s something about learning with when you’re with other people, with your payers and at conferences. So I really think that motivates me to stay on top of things now because I realized just how much, how incredible it is to be around your peers and learn from them and pick up things, which since I went to saint last year, I went to lots of things since then and I think that keeps me on top of things. I just, yeah,
[04:56] but, and you’ve been in business for like 13 years, like new game in town?
[05:00] Oh No, no. I’ve been in business 13 years, but, and really I look back on the stuff that I was doing five, seven, 13 years ago and it’s, I think the quality is the same as what I’ve been doing in the last year. It’s just more fun, I guess that’s what I should say. It’s more fun when you’re around your peers.
[05:19] Yeah. So you know, five, seven years ago, all you were doing was collecting Denny backgrounds, right? That’s what you,
[05:25] your RV? It’s pretty much Nah.
[05:29] Okay. She has like the complete catalog.
[05:33] Do you shoot for them then? How does that work? Well, it’s just a, you know, if they’ve ever needed anything, if they’ve ever needed a backdrop drop photograph. But I had bought so many from them and you know, I would send them images of the one. So now I don’t know, I don’t work for Dnas, you know, I think they’re a great company. They’re my backdrop company. They’re the only ones I buy back jobs from, but I don’t work for them.
[05:57] Yeah. So you’ve that, that’s really interesting. I just assumed you did. I saw your stuff and I thought, oh well they must just hire her to photograph their backgrounds.
[06:05] No, no. Jordan is the, you know, Danny’s photographer and he’s great, but we’re really good friends and that is just such a great company. They are a family owned company. They, you know, the sisters and Deni still works there. It’s just, it’s just a great family owned company and I just lock them all so much that he bought 305 backgrounds. Call this lady and see what she’s up. I do have a lot of backgrounds. I really do. Yeah.
[06:38] For our listeners, if you go to Shannon’s a Instagram or website that you will see a lot of, uh, backgrounds that you could have similar ones from Denny manufacturing. So that’s what we’re talking about. Um, okay. So Shannon, this is one of my questions for you though, is, you know, you said you had never been to any conferences or things like that until your kids were, you knew your kids were kind of out of the house. Why is that? Did you just like to stay home with them or were you just too busy?
[07:07] Well, I was always busy. My businesses is an APP, been busy for years. I know that sounds crazy, but yeah, there was that, I didn’t want to miss anything that they were doing. I don’t want to miss anything at school, you know, any that were always involved in sports. I always involved in so many things. That was just, it felt like there was no time for that. So once I went off to college, now have tons of free time. So, well, I wouldn’t say no. I’m still busy and I don’t have tons of free time. But I do travel more.
[07:38] Yeah. Yeah. You’re not worried about missing anything. You can make your plans only on your schedule. Really. Exactly. Yeah, that makes sense. Um, okay, so our next question is what do you feel like one of the things you’ve said is you are busy and you’ve been busy all along, so it doesn’t sound like you’ve come up against like a time where you’ve worried about getting business. Is that true? That is true. Okay. So what do you feel like it is the thing that works for you or what do you feel like is really working now for you and your business?
[08:11] I feel like that being in a small town, word of mouth is the most important thing that, that I have going for me and it, it really is. I feel like if you are just good to people and you exceed their expectations and you’re good to them and you take care of them and that’s why I say I love shooting senior portraits and that is mainly what I do. But if somebody needs something else, I’m going to do that too. It may not be my favorite thing to do, but because of it’s almost like a small town doctor, you kind of have to take care of everything. And I do that and because I, I do that, I just feel like the word of mouth and the good customer service is why I’m so busy. And the model program, the model program has really kept busy too. I mean it keeps the model program. I have so many models and of course they are clients. So just right off the bat you’ve got, if I have 25 30 models, that’s 25 or 30 seniors that I’ll shoot that year.
[09:08] Yeah. So do you photograph weddings then?
[09:11] I do not. There is one on my website or on my Facebook page, not on my website, just because it was a friend, a friend that her daughter grew up with my boys and it was just a really, really small wedding. But no, I would never shoot like a, I have no desire. I don’t, I won’t say never, but I have no desire to shoot weddings.
[09:30] Yeah. So you do say no to that you
[09:32] I didn’t say no to that. Weddings are the one that is the only thing I really say no to. I’ll do engagement sessions, but I will say no to weddings.
[09:42] So I have a question. You say, you were saying word of mouth on exceeding expectations is the secret to your business. So I think, tell me if I’m right or wrong answer if you even think about this, but part of exceeding expectations is like setting expectations from the beginning. Right? Cause like I’ll give you an example. I’m not going to go too far down on this tangent Kaia but like I have my house, I’m getting some repair work done in my house. I was giant hole in my living room from my roof. It’s a mess. And at first it was okay, but now like the contractor is like out, you know, I’ll text you guys on Monday and then it’ll be like four o’clock on Monday. We still haven’t heard from him. So then it’s like she set an expectation and then didn’t meet it. And so then it doesn’t feel like very good service, even if in the end result’s the same. So do you think about how you set expectations for people to, to exceed them or do you just naturally kind of do it or what goes through your head with that? Actually
[10:36] thank, I just naturally do it because I’m very worried about, you know, I’ll always want to make sure that my customer service is good. So I don’t, I don’t really set, I mean of course I tell them what to expect, but I pretty much try to, you know, live up to those expectations and then I do, I try to go above with everything. Yeah,
[10:56] that makes sense. So it’s like no matter what you tell them, you’re like, okay, I told them I’m going to do this and now what’s the little bit of extra I could go on it?
[11:02] Well, yes. And if, if Cya tell somebody I would have their gallery up the on a certain day and for some reason I didn’t, then I usually will message you on. I’ll be apologizing and explaining or I don’t know. I always try to make things right if I slip up. So, um, yeah. And I do, I think that’s just good customer service.
[11:23] Yeah, definitely. Yeah. Very good. Um, okay, so now that you’ve really gotten involved in kind of the bigger, uh, photography world, what is the one thing that you’re most fired up about in the industry today?
[11:38] Well, uh, you know, technical things I’m so fired up about, or of course the hospitals, saint flashes, mirrorless camera, you know, all that. But really what I’m fired up about the industry is all of the educational opportunities that are out there. All of the people that are just willing help you. Pretty much the people I’m fired up about the paypal and how good people are in our industry. I mean, do you guys not think that it’s just so incredible when you go to any of these conferences or anything like that? People are just so willing to help you all the time? Eh, you know, if you need anything, they are education or they’re always willing to just reach out and they want you to succeed. I feel like that everybody I’ve run into is trying know, they really seem to be invested in your success. I don’t. Does that make sense?
[12:28] And here’s another way I think about it too, and I, this just came to me the other day, like sometimes you meet like a salty photographer, you know, that’s just like grumpy or burnout or whatever it is. And I think they stick out like a sore thumb, not because they’re more grumpy than anybody else in the world, but because our industry is so good and so willing to help that they’re in a sharp contrast to the average person in the industry. You know what I mean? So when someone is burnout or not willing to help or jaded like you’re like, that’s not normal because the normal in our industry is like, how can I help you? You know, what can I show you? You know, who can I connect you with so that you know, you have the thing that you need to improve your business this week kind of thing. Cause that’s,
[13:12] that is exactly right. And exactly how I fail. Just every age. If you give people the chance, I feel like a lot of people don’t really give people the chance to help them if you’re standoffish. And if you don’t really get in there and interact with people, of course people don’t, are not usually going to go out of their way to just track you down. But if you’re just trying just a little bit, the people that will help you is, it’s just, it’s amazing to me. And I never realized it until I started going to things. And you know, even though I was successful in my bed, in my business was good before I ever went to anything. I’ve already just, just in the past year I have changed so much and it just so much better and it’s better because I’ve had so many people that are just out there willing to help me.
[13:58] Yeah. So, so here’s a question for you. So like when I met you at after dark, you know, you’re, you’re hanging out with all the fancy people, you know, and, uh, and that’s true. Like it’s thinking stuff too. And, I mean, did you just approach those people and just say like, Hey, I’m Shannon. Like, just talk to him. Like, I mean, how did you become fast friends with so many people?
[14:18] Well, you know Marcy, Marcy and Christy know everybody and I was friends with them. We met actually years ago on a photography for them. So even though I didn’t go, you know, out of my little comfort or out of my little studio area, I knew people online, you know, there was so many photography groups. Uh, it was back when pro forum, the one I was on was, I love photography. Y’all probably don’t. I don’t know. Do y’all remember that one? Okay. Yes, I’ll pay. Well what was true mouth? She did. She come up out of that one. I don’t think did she met with a different one for her? There were so, so many at the time. But I love photography was like my main one and I was really a frequent poster, you know. So when you would do the forums, you know, you had your people that posted a lot.
[15:05] So I was a pretty good poster. And so I probably, I knew a lot of people, I knew Marcy from there actually we still have, you know, we still have connections through that group. There are so many ways that you can have connections in the industry even if you’d never go anywhere. And because with online now, I mean, you know, you can thank you. You can know so many people without actually ever meeting them personally. So even though, but I had met Marci in person, Marcy increase the, in our little group from that I had met and the reason we went to, you know, she was speaking at same class year and that was the, you know, we all went to support Marcy is thing cause it was her, she had, you know, that was her first big stage presentation. So even though I didn’t know people, I kind of, they had no paypal, if that makes sense. Throw them.
[15:52] Sure. Tell me, like I said, we’ve only been friends for like a year or so. And um, it seems like you kind of know everybody, but I think some of it I think is your personality. Like you’re so much fun to be around, but then also that makes sense kind of how it all evolved. For sure.
[16:07] Well, and even Jordan from Deniz, I didn’t know Jordan. I did not know Jordan, like joining our great friends, but I did not know him until sync last year. I mean, I had went one year, the trade show was at Nashville and when you’re in Atlanta, and I was so excited because my stuff was going to be in the Denny’s booth. So I actually drove out just for the trade show. So, uh, I had met him at the trade show booth. It was either in Atlanta or Nashville, but that I’d just kind of basically spoke to the Denise people and that was it. But I really met him. It was the 2000 saved. This was 2009, 2018 [inaudible] was the first time I’d met him. So yeah, that was really, I made so many, you can make so many friends at these things and so many connections. So most of our new friends came from sank.
[16:54] Yeah, well and that and syncs amazing in that fact that there’s not this like divide between like the speakers and the attendees. You know what I mean? Like there’s, there’s not that fake wall up at all. Like it feels like you can, you can just walk up and say, Hey, you’re going to lunch and just join people at lunch and hang out. And so
[17:11] absolutely. And if you walk around those trade shows, I know this past year I kind of worked the Denny’s booth and then Dan Roe and Gary box, we’re working the a booth right beside me and where, where does shooting together in anybody that came up. It’s like the, the education there was just like if anybody had wanted to that could have just hung out there the whole time. It just learned so much about lighting. I did, you know, even though I’ve been shooting studio lighting for years and I’m really comfortable with it, you can always pick up, you know, something from somebody else. It, whether it’s, I’ve always said you can learn something from anybody, whether it’s a pose, a lighting style, aligning pattern, or even a pattern, but just some kind of little lighting trick that they do. It’s great to just be around those people and they’re so willing to help you all the time. So a lot of them making friends. I was just like hanging out at these boots and being like sucking up all the information I could. Yeah. That’s awesome.
[18:06] Well I think part of Shannon’s a part of your ability to make friends is also your accent. It’s probably not coming over so well right now, but it’s fantastic. I think it’s a great juxtaposition though because you know, your accent is so sweet and your, your personality is so sweet, but you’re obviously super sharp to be able to pick up on, you know, all of the technical things that you need to be able to do. So do the lighting and that type of thing that you do. So
[18:39] well, thank you. Yeah. Well, hey, let’s take a break real quick and when we come back, we’ll do the lightning round and then you can give us some parting guidance. Be Right back.
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[20:18] Okay, welcome back. We are so excited to have you all here. We are interviewing Shannon, actually senior photographer from, uh, where are you from again? Shannon Bryant,
[20:28] Alabama. I’m in she extreme northeast corner of Alabama.
[20:34] Okay. That’s what I thought I was going to say, Alabama. And then I thought, oh no, I always second guess myself with these.
[20:40] Well because I mean me too. Cause I think when I think of Alabama, I think I like coastal Alabama. And so you always talk about like Nashville and stuff being so close. So then I always want to say you’re from Tennessee, but you’re actually still
[20:50] oh yeah. And I’m even on the eastern time zone because we’re a mile from the Tennessee line and a mile from the Georgia line. I’m like right in the trust state little area. Okay. So Shannon,
[21:01] I want to know, uh, you’ve been a photographer, you’ve had your business for 13 years and so before that did you want to be a photographer? What was holding you back from becoming full time?
[21:10] Um, probably I really, I don’t know what was holding me back. I was a nurse before that, so I was working part time as a nurse and then I kind of just slowly started doing photography on the side. We’ll then it just intermediate, like got pretty busy within like the first year I pretty much got so busy that I quit my nursing job, but I was only working part time. It wasn’t a fulltime job at the time, so I really didn’t have anything holding me back when I decided to do it. I did it.
[21:38] Yeah. Well, and that’s interesting. Like I want to hit think about people and getting burned out from their jobs. It’s like nurses, teachers, and then photographers, you know what I mean? So did you feel burned out when you were doing nursing or not really?
[21:50] No, not really. I really had a good job, but I just, you know, I loved photography. It was, even though it was going really well for me, so it wasn’t, I did enjoy the nursing job too. I never really had a major conflict with it, but it was just, I was so busy with photography, I just didn’t have time to do it.
[22:08] Okay. So yeah. So like the photography thing thing kind of grew. Yeah.
[22:10] Yeah. It just kinda grew. Exactly. Yeah.
[22:14] Cool. Okay. So I’ve got a couple of questions for ya. Um, around money. So the first one is like if I gave you $1,000 right now, what would you buy that was like photo related or what would you tell our audience to buy that’s photo related?
[22:27] Well, the really the thing, I would save the thousand dollars because I really want the Sigma Art One oh five lands. But since I only have $1,000, I would have just invested in education. I would invest it in a conference, I would invest it in and actually I would probably invest it, you know, they’re just so many. There’s um, you box. Imagine there’s so many and so much education there that even, I’m a really good shooter. I’m really comfortable with natural lot, but I have, I really could use some sales sales education. So I would probably invest that money and really get a mass sales up there to be honest with you. Yeah.
[23:09] Well we just lit up plastic interview, so listen to the interview with Chris Scott if he has some great stuff. Awesome. You’ll like it. Yeah. Yeah.
[23:18] Okay. So, so you would buy the one oh five art lens that you’ve been staring at? Yes, but it’s too much for 1000 bucks. So then you do education and then you would buy like three more backgrounds secretly. Right? Right.
[23:29] Probably because this is what I always say, even though I’ve really want that Sigma Art, I’m not even joking. People don’t notice your lands when you change Atlantic, you’ve got all the focal lengths you need. You’re good. They’re not gonna notice if I’m shooting with an 85 or one oh five but if I get a new backdrop, people notice that and they will notice. I’ve got my eye on that. There’s an egg chair from targets like $400 actually, I’d probably spend that thousand on new background props in that egg chair from target. So people will notice that. They will notice if I put that egg Gera, my studio.
[24:02] Right. That’s funny. It’s true. Okay. So, okay, but now, so now I’ll give you $1,000 as well. So what would you not buy in the industry with it? Or what would you tell people not to spend that thousand dollars on?
[24:13] Well, this is just me personally because I just don’t, I’m not interested in my website design and logos. I just don’t put a lot of effort in that stuff. I’m more worried about shooting and equipment than I am about that. So my website is a Squarespace. I think it’s not that much every year. And I know that people will invest a lot of money in that. But that’s just one of those things. I personally wouldn’t not saying there’s anything right or wrong with it, cause you know, it’s whatever is your whatever you like. But I would not spend $1,000 on a new website because I’d be like, well you must, Squarespace is fine. Nobody, my clients can’t tell the difference. So I’m good with that.
[24:53] Yeah, that makes sense. I mean, because as long as it’s like, as long as your website and stuff is over, like a certain bar, that’s fine. You know, you, you can notice a really bad website, but you know, like as long as your website is decent,
[25:05] right. How many people are gonna tell us a lot of pretty inexpensive options now and they’re, they’re just so user friendly that even, I’m not that technical with other website design and all that, but even I can figure they might out there so easy. Yeah,
[25:21] Instagram is really, really what’s important for your seniors. I feel like you definitely pay good attention to that.
[25:27] I agree. And I do focus on the Instagram a lot. I’m very, I don’t, I’m not one of those people that thinks you have to have certain colors in your scheme has to be just all perfect then I’m pretty picky about what I actually post on it.
[25:41] Yes. Yeah, that makes sense.
[25:43] For sure. Well and, and, and I think you have like, you people focus on scheme and color and all that stuff because they’re trying to create consistency. I think your work is so consistent that it just naturally happens when you just post your work.
[25:56] Well, thank you. And I, I do feel like that, I even asked her shoot natural light a lot too. So I’ll shoot natural light off camera flash studio. And I do think that I don’t, I guess my editing style is so consistent that I can pull all those images together and I do still flow well together. And when I do an album, I pretty much have a little bit of everything in it and the album will still flow really nicely.
[26:18] Yeah, yeah, yeah.
[26:19] Um, okay. Just real quick. So we’re talking about your Instagram. So it’s at, it’s actually photography, um, a t c h l e y photography is what you’re on Instagram, right? That’s it. Oh, I’m sorry, go ahead.
[26:34] Well, and then what do you use for editing? Okay.
[26:37] Photoshop. I’m, I still use Photoshop map pool, the image. I am still using Adobe camera raw to pull the images and convert them to jpeg. Then I’ll just edit and Photoshop.
[26:47] Okay. That’s, that’s interesting. It’s always fun, you know, cause you have a view, like you said, you have a very consistent color, very consistent, um, uh, like contrast and depths to your images. And so, um, yeah, that’s, it’s always cause a lot of people that I know that have that kind of color use capture one. Yeah.
[27:05] I don’t, but you know, I have a program that I’ve been using for years. It’s a plugin and it’s called to color. And as swear by this program, I just, I really love this program. It’s like a plug in like portraiture or Topaz, anything in it. It’s the same as that, but you pull it in, you pull your pitcher and it will, it has these little bars for your skin tones and your black levels and your white levels. And most of the time I’ve never used the white levels, but the black level, I just feel like that is a big thing with [inaudible] is that I used to inhaler, but I think it’s kind of an, I don’t even know if it’s still a popular plugin, but I personally love it. So what is it calling to color? P S C t o c o. L. O. R
[27:46] because I think what I like about your images so much is that you like, I don’t know, you have a lot of contrast, but you don’t like clip. You’re black. So you have true blacks in your image, but they’re not clipped. You know what I mean? So like you have a picture of a girl with like with dark hair, whatever, you’re not losing a lot of detail in here. You still see all the highlights and stuff in our hair where a lot of times people will just clip it and it would just become like kind of this dark blob. You know, when you do a really good job of maintaining the detail in the, in the shadows, which is really, really good.
[28:16] Great. Thank you. I actually check that, I check it on my images to make sure that I’m not sleeping too much to clip in the shadows to match or that I’m not over exposing the highlights. So
[28:26] yeah, and that it shows, it shows big time eat. So.
[28:29] Okay. So let’s go onto our next question. So what is the best advice you’ve ever received?
[28:35] Well, it’s not really advice that I have gotten gotten from a person, but I’ve just read this so many times and I think it is so true, but it’s, if you’re the smartest person in the room, you need to find another room. So when I go anywhere, like I’m always looking for somebody smarter than me, always somebody that’s better than me because I want to go to, I want to be kind of a sponge to that person. I always want to be learning and being educated by somebody that knows more than I do. So I guess, I mean, I just thought that is just something that has always stuck in my head through. I may have read it, so I don’t know where I’ve read it, but I guess what’s the advice that I have for people is, or that that has affected me the most. So I’m always looking for somebody that’s better than me. So if you’re at a conference and I’m hanging with you, it’s probably because I’m thank you better. They may, I want to learn what you’re doing. So that’s it.
[29:30] Yeah. Very good. Yeah, it, it also explains why she’s hanging out with who she’s hanging out with. Matt.
[29:36] That’s, yeah, that’s why I was hanging out with you, Matt and Canada one time. Yeah, no. Hey, next year is our year, Shannon saying I’m worried about that. So I’m going to take a total tangent, sorry Kai. But every year sync does these competitions where like they do like Instagram rewards and call him like Instagram and Shannon, I feel like this is the year that we can take down all those guys that when every year with their silly posts, I feel like this is the year you and I agree. I think that we just knew we could win an instagramming. We are gonna win an Instagram me next year they’re going to learn you’re going to do it. I don’t know. They’re pretty good though. I’m Kinda, we’re going to have to really pull deep tone to wear on that one because they’re good. Yeah. But we need to talk and like start planning it now because I don’t remember what the theme of sink this year is. It’s like new road or a different way to get somewhere. Yeah. Different way. And I feel like we could, we could do like a funny video like showing us how we got to sink or something like that. How did they get on the podcast, Matt? So, yeah, I was thinking I could just film Shannon hitchhiking across Alabama.
[30:50] Bring us back on task.
[30:51] Okay. Sorry. Um, okay. So, uh, she gonna share one of your personal habits site you think contributes to your success.
[30:58] Oh, I get up at like four o’clock, Sandro, five o’clock eastern time every day. And pretty much I work in the mornings before anybody else is up and I get things done and I’m always like, and I also actually, I get on the treadmill every day and I kept plugging youtube videos of laddering and just educational things. And so I’m constantly just trying to learn while I’m, you know, there’s always sent them to learn. But I’m doing that. I exercise on the, on the treadmill, watching those youtube videos, but also working. So pretty much my day, by the time 10 o’clock, 11 o’clock comes around, I’m pretty much good for the day because if I don’t get it done before lunchtime, it’s probably not gonna happen. So it’s those early morning habits for me that make bare, make me do better.
[31:43] Wow. So we’ve talked to a lot of people that do that. So what do you do the rest of the day then?
[31:49] Well, I still work, but you know, then you’re getting distracted. You’re getting phone calls, you’ve got chats going. I mean it’s just so much more peaceful at five o’clock in the morning before everybody wakes up. Yeah. So I mean I’m still working, but just not as productive. Yeah. And then do you go to bed early then? Oh yeah. Yeah. Oh definitely. I’m an early bird too, so I’m like nine o’clock I’m out and you pretty much, you know, I’m pretty useless after nine o’clock so. Yup.
[32:20] Yeah, that makes sense. Um, okay. And then the next question is, what is an internet resource that you would recommend?
[32:27] Youtube. I love Youtube. You can find if I have any photography related or just life related, anything you want to learn, you can pretty much learn on youtube. So I’m always getting on there. If there’s some kind of lighting thing I’m not sure about or just anything at all, I just put it, type it into youtube and their guns. Even just editing tips, tips to get your skies blue or anything like that. You can find on youtube. So Youtube is like my Gov. Yeah, I love it.
[32:57] That’s fantastic. Um, and then, uh, are you a reader?
[33:01] Oh, actually yes. Not as consistently as I used to be, but I am.
[33:07] And, uh, the reason I ask is because some people we’ve asked this, you know, like recommend the book and they go, Oh, I don’t really, really spread. So then I feel bad. So I wanted to ask if that way first. So, so what would you recommend? Do you have any books that you recommend?
[33:19] I do. And you know, when I say that I didn’t go anywhere or, you know, and do learn, you know, education that way for the first 13 years I would read constantly. And I don’t know if they still do them, but was Amhurst used to have books all the time and pretty much you could learn anything. There’s a Christopher Gray Latin book. I mean, you still, you still so full of information, but those Amhurst books, I seriously would have bookcases full them. They’re all just great. And uh, did you ask me what I’m reading now that I would recommend? Oh, that’d be lovely. Okay. I’m sorry, I got sidetracked with my love of those Amhurst books. You know, you’re great. You can, that is, there was so much education packed in those books that people would just take the time to actually read on. It’s still relevant. But, uh, right now I’m reading the Lindsay ad or posing Berg. It’s great. Um, so another one think I’ll just, I mean, I don’t know. I’ve got a bookshelf full of books. I do read a lot, just, you know, educational photography, books, things like that.
[34:21] Yeah, yeah, yeah, that’s fine. Okay. And then Matt, do you want to finish up with our
[34:26] awesome. So a gift. Um, two things. So give our audience some parting guidance that just, you know, whatever you would tell them to do. Look out for whatever. Um, and then just share also how they can connect with,
[34:37] okay. Partying Gannett’s as steel. I’m such a firm believer on, you know, hanging out or are learning from the people that when you go to things, don’t be shy. Go Up to the is specially when they’re doing those demos at the trade shows, they want you to come up to them, they want you to come up to them, they want to explain things to you and there is so much education, they’re there that people don’t participate. And you know, I worked at the boats for two days or the whole time that we were at seek. And you would be surprised at how many people just go around the trade show and don’t really, I don’t know if that, I think sometimes people are a little shy. Maybe they don’t want to go up to these people because it is some of the [inaudible], what did you call them?
[35:19] The fancy people know me. But you know some of the ones that are there, they are very well known in the industry and they are a little intimidating. But if you’re just talk to them, they are awesome and I just want to help you. So don’t be afraid to go up to these people and just ask them questions. There is no dumb question because if there has been a dumb question, I promise I have asked it. So there is nothing nobody ever makes you feel like a question stupid. I have never been around anybody that, that really, even the, you know, the, the top of the industry that do not make you feel stupid. So don’t be afraid to just go up to people and learn and, and most people are so proud. I love to share their knowledge. So
[36:01] yeah, cause they, they worked really hard. You know, we’re, we’re exactly where you were at some point. And so they’re there, they’ve seen it now on the other side and they want to bring you up and so they’re all,
[36:09] they are all for your success. They really are. And I, and like you said that the exception, there are a few people in an industry that is, that are an exception, but for the most part, people want you to succeed and they love photography so much that they really want to share what they know. It’s not, they’re not being arrogant either. They’re being, they just love it and they want to share what they love.
[36:33] Okay, so and then, so how can people connect with you? So share your website, you know, share your Instagram again. Um, where are you teaching in this next year? All that.
[36:41] Okay. My website is www actually photography.com Facebook, actually photography and Instagram is actually photography. I am going to be teaching at modern senior imagine in June and October and I will be a sink next year in the Spring and I mentor a lot and people will usually just message me on Facebook or email me for that and we set that up on an individual basis. Okay,
[37:07] cool. So they can just reach out to you on Instagram or Facebook or something like that. Oh, absolutely. Awesome. Well thanks so much for being on the show. This was awesome. I’ve been looking forward to your recording your show for awhile now, so thanks so much.
[37:18] Well thank you for having me. It was great. It was, this is my first podcast, so I really didn’t know what to expect, but you guys just made it so easy that nothing substantial.
[37:28] It’s just a conversation. It’s no different than talking on the phone to us.
[37:31] Oh, absolutely. And you guys were such so great at moving the conversation along.
[37:36] Well, we weren’t always good Hong Chi. We used to stumble over to their lives.
[37:42] Sure. We can get better to. Shannon, thank you so much for being on here. We really appreciate it. And um, go back and enjoy the rest of your vacation at the beach. Well, thank you so much.
[37:52] All right. Thanks guys. Thanks for joining us. We’ll talk to you guys next week.
[37:56] Thank you for listening to from nothing to profit a photographer’s podcast with Matt and Kaia. Be sure to subscribe for more business strategy and ideas to help you create that profitable and successful business you’ve always wanted. See you on the next episode of from nothing to profit.