My Why

Sophie Fortier - Ottawa Wedding Photographer - hashtag paper - invitation suites

I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts, consuming a lot of content and generally taking a lot of classes to better my business, marketing and client experience. Most of them all agree on one thing: that you have to find you “why”. Why are you pursuing the difficult route of owning, operating and growing a business instead of working a “regular” job? Surely it’s not the money… or the flexible schedule… or the ease of being your own boss? Because let’s be honest here, none of those things are a) guaranteed and b) accurate depictions of owning a business.

Sophie Fortier - Ottawa Wedding Photographer

Money : It takes a LONG TIME to build a business to the point that you can live from the income on a full time basis. Even then, you are more likely to make more money at a “regular” desk job and have benefits. Let’s be honest, I have to do taxes, pay HST, buy endless classes and subscriptions to keep my skills sharp. I have goods that I sell, gifts that I buy for clients, updates on gear, insurance, not counting actually getting paid for my time. There is very little reason for money to be a motivator here.

Flexible Schedule: Listen, I know I CAN take the day off, or log off early and have no one yelling down my neck for it. BUT, it also means that I am not working on my business. Part of me has a problem turning it all off and just relaxing. So the semblance of making your own schedule is thrown out the window. I am often editing, writing blog posts, collaborating long into the night. Those sneak peaks I sent you after your wedding? Yup, I stayed up until 2am to upload the images, pick the best and quickly edit the perfect shots. But is is all SO WORTH is when you text me back, gushing over them as you remember the whirlwind of your wedding day.

Being your own boss: Sure, I don’t have anyone checking on my work, making sure I’m on track… but on the other hand, I have no one but myself to keep accountable. I have to set deadlines and STICK TO THEM. It takes discipline and hard work and strategy to get all the things done. And there is always something else to work on so not having someone oversee your work can be tough. My laundry, health, friendships and yes, my relationship get sacrificed so I can do the dang thing and get it done.

So you might be wondering at this point. WHY? Why would you work yourself to the bone and be an entrepreneur? Because I can make a difference in someone’s life. That girl who grew up on fairytales, thinking of the day her Prince Charming would sweep her off her feet? She’s been dreaming of this day since she was 5l. She had a secret Pinterest board for a wedding long before she’s engaged. Heck even likely long before she’s in a relationship. (yup, me too girl! No shame here.)

I can help her make this day as special as she always imagined it. I can give her resources to help plan and decorate and choose amazing vendors that will also go out of their way to help her dream come true. I get to immortalize that. I get to be the one vendor who’s service lasts longer than a lifetime. I get be to the person who spends the most time with her on the big day. When her grandkids pull out her old wedding album and ask her to tell the story of how they met, one more time, those will be my images, my work being showcased and passed down.

Above all else, I want to make the experience as magical as possible and I want you to be able to crack that wedding album once a year as you grow old together and remember the vows you made to each other. I want you to think about those good days when you have a fight and when the going gets tough.

I want my work to last a lifetime, yes; but what I really want is for my work to bring back memories for generations to come.

Sophie Fortier