Today we’d like to introduce you to Jen Driesbach.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
For a profession, I get to photograph unique and interesting people utilizing light, emotion, fashion, beauty and drama to weave a story from behind my lens. What a crazy cool profession to get to have.
I started in this industry ten years ago with a background in musical education, fine art and administrative assistance. If you told me ten years ago I would be where I am now I more-than-likely would have been surprised and laughed out loud. I started this career ten years ago armed with a dream and determination and if I’m being honest, the latter has served me more times than the first. There is a quote that reads: “The distance between your dreams and reality is discipline.” And I think that it’s true. You can have all the dreams in the world but that won’t make for a successful business without the discipline of learning how to actually run your business. I didn’t take the traditional school route to become a professional photographer, instead I utilized the internet and the plethora of educators it provided. Websites like CreativeLive and conferences like WPPI + Showit United provided the inspiration, educators and tools I needed to pursue this dream of photography successfully. Throughout my education these past ten years I photographed as many people who would let me to learn and hone my skills. Malcolm Gladwell has a “rule” that in order to become world-class in any field one needs to have 10,000 hours of deliberate practice in that field, and I believe that to be true.
These past three years I’ve been more intentional about focusing the majority of my work photographing weddings and high school seniors. I enjoy families and watching them grow, but there is something about the season of life that a person walks through from about age seventeen through their twenties that really lights me up photographically. There is confidence, there is newness that is inspiring and enjoyable to not only spend time with but also to photograph.
Has it been a smooth road?
I’m not sure any career comes with a 100% “smooth road”. The struggles I work at most are managing being the CEO, CFO, marketer, web manager, art director, wife + mom with balance and grace. But I think those job descriptions come with any self-employment career and are a “struggle” for anyone setting out to run their own business.
The majority of my struggles have always been “back-of-house”. I think most creatives would say that. Building your own website and updating it, SEO, intentional social media marketing, taxes, business licensing and branding are all “struggles” that I work at on a consistent basis. And recently I have learned to outsource things that aren’t necessarily my strengths so that it frees me up to focus on the things I am strong in to be even better at those.
The other side of my job is working with my clients and I’m thankful that (for the most part) my interactions with every single one of my clients has been a good to great experience. I don’t advertise or do bridal shows so my success is largely in part to the clients who choose me as their photographer and through their word of mouth. I’m thankful for the amazing clients I get to work with and strive to provide the very best service to each one.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
I am known for my work in fine art wedding photography and high school senior portraiture.
I specialize in creating and sharing memorable photographic stories that are vibrant, emotional + artistic.
I think that what I am most proud of as a company and what sets me apart from other go hand-in-hand and is this:
I genuinely care about each client that I get to work with and do my artistic best to clearly and beautifully visually tell a piece of their life’s story through creating an effortless + enjoyable experience that my clients get to have with them and look back on for the rest of their lives.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
I do and I don’t feel like my city is a good place for a business like mine.
I do because Phoenix is bursting with diversity and visually interesting people and settings to work in and with. In one day, I can photograph in the beauty and uniqueness of the saguaro desert and then an hour later head to the art district downtown for some of the most colorful urban backdrops all in the same day. Also, our Arizona sunsets are unrivaled. Golden hour takes on a whole new meaning here and the sunsets are amazing to photograph clients in.
I don’t because much like other large cities there are a plethora of photographers per square mile which makes setting yourself apart just that much more challenging. Again, I’m thankful for my clients and their word of mouth marketing.
Having been at this career for these past ten years, you see many start-ups and then see them fizzle out when the discipline of running your business needs to kick in after a year or so. If I were to encourage someone just starting out I’d say Yes! Go for it! BUT…learn how to figure out the nuts and bolts of running your business and chase that just as much as you chase creativity and dreaming. Phoenix is a great city to grow your business with more than enough work to go around. What will set you apart is your longevity and business endurance as well as your creativity and vision. You have to work at both.
- Website: www.jendriesbach.com
- Phone: 480.518.2224
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @jendriesbach
- Facebook: @JenDriesbachPhotographer
- Twitter: @jendriesbach