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So you want the whole story?

Well, you're in luck!

Grab a chair and a snack - my favorite is anything salty! - and settle in! 


1986

I was born in beautiful Salt Lake City, UT to the most amazing parents a girl could ask for! And I had a childhood that was blessed beyond measure, participating in dance, cheerleading, figure skating and playing whatever musical instruments my heart desired. My childhood had much opportunity to learn and grow from both experiences and examples.

I had not been raised in a family of entrepreneurs, in fact, it was quite the opposite. I had been raised by parents who legitimately thought that if you worked for a corporation, you’d be safe and secure and make enough money to get by all of your life. I was the type of kid that had a tendency to get bored easily, and this proved to be true when I found myself in mundane jobs and doing routine things. Many of my first jobs bored me after a couple of years, and in high school, it wasn’t that big of a deal for me to change jobs frequently. It’s kind of expected for a high school student. But as I got older, I just wasn’t finding happiness in any of the jobs I worked. I could not possibly dream of staying at any of these jobs for the next 30 years like my parents had done.

2004-2006

I graduated high school and met my now-husband, Chris. We began dating just 4 short days after my 18th birthday. (He likes to say he robbed the cradle!) I knew within 3 weeks I would marry him, and I often wondered how I could be so sure about that decision and still struggle with figuring out what I wanted to do for a future career. 

In hindsight, I realize I was totally normal and nobody actually knows what their future holds when they are 18 years old. 

We got married in 2006 and my husband's new job transferred us to a small town about an hour and a half west of Salt Lake City called Wendover. This town has a whole lot of nothing going for it except that a neighboring town called West Wendover happens to be in Nevada, which means there are Casinos.

No, I didn't turn into a gambler. But I did get increasingly bored through our year and a half of living there and take up a hobby of photography.

I learned everything I could about the art and the technical skill, and improved rather quickly. Naturally, through this progression, I began to have people ask me to photograph them - in various capacities, and much like a lot of entrepreneurs, I learned that I might have something lucrative here that I could make a living doing what I loved.

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2010-ish

So, I began to charge for my photography.

And after a very short period of time, I found myself thrust into the world of business without really having a clue where to go and what to do.

It occurred to me one day that I had sought out education to learn the skill of photography, and it served me well, and what I really needed if I was going to make this photography thing a business, was business education - because I knew nothing about running a business.

I barely even knew how to get a business license.

When I discovered photography, and began to learn about running a business, I felt like I had finally found something I could do forever - be a business owner. I wasn’t totally positive at the time that it would always be photography, but I loved it enough to give it a go.


2014

During my career as a professional photographer, I fought to learn and earn enough of an income to quit my full time job. My husband and I faced a lot of challenges, including several relocations, financial struggles (including bankruptcy, car repossession and short selling a home), among many other things that life decided to throw at us.

But one thing I knew for sure was that once I had finally quit my full time job and become a full time photographer, I would never work for a corporate company again.

The “security” is false.

I discovered that after having been basically fired from not 1, not 2, but 3 jobs in a row, which I choose to believe was a higher power’s way of telling me that I am meant to provide for myself and use my education (despite the lack of degree) for more than these jobs realized I was capable of.

Once I mentally and emotionally got on the other side of these trials, I realized that my success was really dependent upon me and things started to turn around.

I was never challenged in those jobs and I felt like my knowledge was literally wasting away as I punched a clock for a company that didn’t appreciate me - simply because I didn’t have a piece of paper to show them how intelligent I was.

I rebuilt my photography business, after one more relocation when I chose to fully rebrand and take on a new genre, and it was successful beyond my wildest dreams, but not ironically I realized that over the course of time, I had stopped picking up my camera for personal things, and only for professional things.

2016

I had completely lost my hobby.

And I felt like I had no outlet besides running my business. It was then that I knew I was causing a lot of unnecessary stress on my life by not having anything to do besides run my business. I spent time with my husband, but because we had just moved, we didn’t have many friends, we didn’t have things to do for enjoyment, and outside of our quiet little life together, it was just this business - that I was losing passion for.

I knew it was time to walk away to rediscover my hobby, so I could have an outlet.

But it had become such a great source of income and I had a huge talent for what I was doing that it was a very bittersweet thing to walk away from. So I continued for 6-8 more months, quietly, with nobody knowing that I was losing passion - in fact, during this time it continued to get busier and more profitable.

The most beautiful thing is that over the course of these years, I learned so much about business, that I became a much more valuable resource than I realized for other business owners, and many of them began asking for my help and thoughts.

I put a lot of money into business education through that time - like more than I had ever invested in myself before, and while I learned a lot, I also had a lot of times where I felt like the money I had invested was not worth it and that I had learned more being self-taught than anything.

When you’re a one-woman show, you have to learn it all. Marketing, Finance, Development, Fulfillment… and your best friend becomes automation and organization. Without those two things I would not have grown my business to where it was. 

I’m an experimentalist by nature. When I don’t know how to do something, I will keep trying until I figure it out. I seek out references and resources, and try try try. I never realized this about myself until recently when it kept happening over and over again. I would get frustrated with something I was trying to learn, walk away for a while, come back and find success.

It occurred to me that I’m sort of a “handyman of business.”

I know a lot about a lot, and I don’t realize how much I know until I start talking to people about it. And I remember vividly thinking, I am not doing right by myself or anyone around me by not sharing what I know and using it to benefit others.

Isn’t that what this life is all about? Serving? Sharing?

So, I launched a little side hustle to help other entrepreneurs, and within 3 months it outgrew what I had time for. I fell in love with it. It was totally fulfilling for me to figure things out for other people and I began to think about how I could balance it with my photography business that was also growing rapidly.

It hit me that I couldn’t manage to grow both at the pace they were growing at and it was then that I started to think really seriously about walking away from my photography business.

I realized that while I really loved photography and had a talent for it, the part I loved the most was working on the foundation and function of that business, and I loved photography as a hobby more than a professional. This struck a lot of people quite interestingly because I was quite good at it. People ranged from completely shocked, to disappointed and sad that they had missed an opportunity to be photographed by me (which was so much more flattering than I had ever anticipated), to proud of me for following what I was really interested in doing. People I had no idea were following/watching what I had created came out of the woodworks and made comments that they were sad to see someone with such class and high level of professionalism leave the industry.

It caught me totally off guard.

But taking something from a hobby to a business will always change your perspective and passion for it. And it’s something I didn’t entirely realize until I did it.

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Essentially my goal is to be the resource for other women entrepreneurs including my Maskcara team and use the gifts I've been blessed with in a way that benefits more than just myself!

I want to teach more women - who might be fearful or unsure about themselves - that they can create a business that they love, by being the example through my own experiences. And that the key is your own mindset.

Hindsight is always 20/20, and I see how so many of my life experiences have given me an education that I can't take for granted. 


I'm not sure what part of my story resonated with you enough to read to this point, but I have to applaud and thank you for it! I know it didn't happen by accident.

You're here for a reason. 

I'd love to connect with you!

If you want to start or learn about a business with Maskcara, click here!

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