Tuesday, July 26, 2011

meet Leah Remillet

Passion.  Passion is what exudes from Leah Remillet as she talks about helping other photographers grow their business and make it profitable.  And passion is what it takes for Leah to run a successful business for other photographers called Go{4}Pro, in addition to a successful photography business of her own.

“I love helping others find the confidence to take their business to the success level that they dream of, “ says Leah.  “I love seeing the light bulb go off and push people to do what they want to do!”

Through her blog, go4prophotos.com, Leah gives photographers the tools to make their business thrive. She loves to focus passion, profits, purpose and being pro. She shares tips on everything from branding to pricing, interviews with other photographers and lots of free downloads!  Be sure to check it out and read the interview below to learn more about Leah and Go4Pro!

Tell me about yourself…
I’m from Seattle originally.  I have lived in Hawaii (I’m totally jealous of her!) and now we live in Portland while my husband is in Chiropractic school.  I have been married for 10 years and I have three children, 2 girls (6 & 5) and one little boy (3).

How did you get into photography?  
While we were living in Hawaii, I came across an image by Mark Holladay and was blown away.  It was the first image I had seen that wasn’t a traditional studio portrait.  I fell in love immediately and knew I wanted to be a photographer and produce images like that.

Any formal training?  
I joke all the time that I learned everything I know about photoshop from You Tube!  But it isn’t really a joke! J  My husband allowed me to use his graduation money to buy my first camera and he sold his laptop so I could buy a lens.  After that, I just started teaching myself everything I could possibly learn.  I used Google, I checked books out at the library…anything I could get my hands on to learn about photography.  All the late nights I spent reading and learning paid off when I could start buying back everything my husband had sold for me and more. We love to spoil each other.

How long have you been a photographer?  
I started my business in late 2008.

You started Go4ProPhotos.com…tell me the inspiration behind it? 
I started out in photography knowing nothing about photography.  So I wanted to pass along any and all information I learned along the way to other photographers.  Then I realized that I did know a lot about business and thought there were photographers who didn’t know that side of things.  I started passing along business information to help those photographers who are confident in their camera skills but need a little help with the business side of things.

So what exactly is Go{4}Pro to someone who’s never been to the site? 
Go{4}Pro started as an inspiration blog and it’s still definitely that! But I also offer marketing templates, logo design, newsletter templates. And my favorite… Business coaching.  I love getting to talk one on one and really break down the struggles a photographer might be having and then give them the tools to truly thrive!

Who or what inspires you as a photographer? 
I get inspired everywhere!  I have favorite people in the industry that inspire me such as Melissa and Jerry Ghionis, Sue Bryce and Tamara Lackey and then I also get inspired from things that are not specifically in our industry, like Nordstrom’s and J Crew catalogs!

How would you describe your photography style?
Traditional Portraiture with a Modish Flare
I like traditional poses that make everyone look their most flattering but with a contemporary twist!

What has been your proudest moment as a photographer?  
I love being involved with charities and helping them through my photography.  I also love being able to give clients gifts that are priceless.  Recently, I had a friend who found out she had Leukemia the same day her baby was born.  I was able to take photos of her baby often so that we could document her growth while my friend was in the hospital fighting this disease.  And when my friend lost her battle, we were able to use the photos I had taken at the funeral.  It was a priceless gift I could give her and her family!

What has been your most successful marketing technique?  
I think the experience I give my clients is my best marketing technique.  From start to past what most consider the finish, I make sure that every detail is there and that my clients feel special.  They leave me wanting to give a great referral because they are so happy with the experience they had.

What is the biggest piece of advice you can share with photographers starting their own business?  
FIND YOUR CONFIDENCE!  I think so many of us start out without the confidence, it of course make perfect sense why but it still hurts us.  I hear photographers all the time saying they are new, but they’ve been in business longer than I have.  Do whatever you have to do to build your confidence.  I think that means education and investing in yourself.

Who is Go4ProPhotos.com for?  
Any photographer really, but is best suited for the photographer who is confident in their camera skills but is ready to make their business truly profitable.

What is the biggest thing you hope to help photographers with through Go4ProPhotos.com?  
I hope to give women the empowerment to know they can do this!  I want them to know they can be successful at the level that they want to be.  If you want to work every single day, you can do it and if you want to work four times a month you can do that too and be successful at it!  There are really no secrets in business, just ideas you haven’t heard yet.  I hope to provide photographers with the ideas that will help their business.

What kinds of things do you have planned for Go4ProPhotos.com?  
Well this month is Business Tip Month!  I have asked fans on Facebook to share the things that they want to learn.  We will be talking about pricing, ordering sessions and more!  At the end of the month, I am hosting a webinar where I will show everything I do for an ordering appointment and how I create that special experience for my clients.  I will share how I get my clients pumped up for these appointments and how other photographers can create their own experience for their clients.

Sounds like you are super busy!  How do you manage your time?  
I delegate!  I thought about what I really did not want to do, and I hired someone to do those things.  I keep the things that make me unique to do myself and I concentrate on my relationships with my kids and husband.  I hire someone to do everything else!  A lot of times mom’s think they have to hire a sitter so they can get work done but I do the opposite.  I hire someone to do all the other stuff so I can spend time with my family!  I also reevaluate all the time.  If something didn’t work out so well last week, I reevaluate and adjust!

What is your typical everyday routine?  
Well it doesn’t always go as planned but my ideal routine would be the following:
Get up before kids to check and return emails.
Then get the kids up and have breakfast with them.
Then I have learning time with the kids.  Since it is summer time I feel like we should spend a little time on learning!
Quiet time is next.  This is when I try and get some work done while the kids play quietly.
Then we play and do chores. Dinner and Family time follows.  Then it is bedtime for the kids and I get to work 3 of the nights a week. The other nights are devoted to my husband!

What is in your camera bag? 
5D Mark II, 50mm 1.2, 24-70mm 2.8, reflector, pez machines and candy and fashion tape!

Favorite Lens? 
50mm 1.2

Studio or in-home? 
I have a studio in my home and I shoot on location!

If you weren’t a photographer, what would you be?
 Teacher for business students!  This is why go4pro is my passion!  I love seeing people get excited and motivated to do what they want to do and make it successful!

What is your favorite Savvy indulgence?  
CHOCOLATE!  The really expensive kind not Hershey’s!

Be sure to check out www.go4prophotos.com for tons of business tips and Leah’s latest photography at  www.LeahRemilletBlog.com

Make sure to “like” her facebook page  
and follow her on twitter .  
There is a special download on facebook for all who like her page!
Leah is also hosting the web event we posted about here...the coupon for $100 off ends tonight!  

Thanks Leah!

{Interview by Leslie Kerrigan}


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