My Entrepreneurship Story: Then vs. Now

October 28, 2021

I like to say that entrepreneurship found me, not necessarily the other way around.

When I first got introduced to the entrepreneurship world back in 2015, I had been asked to interview for an internship with Brad Hart Co. If I’m being completely honest, at this time I wanted nothing to do with pursuing photography as a career, despite having it been a deep passion + hobby of mine since childhood. There isn’t much of a reason as to why I didn’t want to pursue photography as a career other than the fact that I was scared and felt unqualified: something which my 19 year old self had yet to discover.

Little had I known the endless amount of opportunities, growth (both personally + in business), and the countless doors this internship would open up. Working alongside Brad was the best thing to ever happen to me. Not only did I gain SO much knowledge and experience for the industry, specifically in the wedding world, but even more so I gained confidence in myself in not only who I am, but the capabilities I had as an entrepreneur.

After my internship, a couple of moves, and a total God-encountering moment (blog post about this really cool story coming soon!!) I had been asked to work full time for the BHCo team as an associate photographer and editor, and in January of 2017 I had officially become a full time entrepreneur.

These couple of years working together were some of the most memorable, growth-filled and life-giving years. We got to work with incredible couples, travel the country and document so many love stories under the BHCo brand. In addition to traveling and growing as a photographer, I was able to grow so much as a private editor – learning somebody else’s editing style and vision for their product. Little did I know this would be the setting foundation for a business which I would launch years down the road (more on that soon!) In 2018, I had decided to make the leap and launch my own personal brand ‘Alisa Nicholle Co’ where I specialized in brand photography. In this same year, I spent a summer living in Los Angeles where I traveled cross-country, met some incredible people, and grew even more as both an individual and in my newly-launched business.

After the first couple of years of owning my own business I experienced what a lot of new business owners experience: lots of ups and downs, challenges, and finding that I was constantly evolving and growing. 2020 happened and the pandemic hit – during this season, I found that I had a choice to make. I could either quit entrepreneurship and find what seemed to be a more stable job OR I could press forward, pivot and simply make things happen.

Well… you can probably guess what happened.

From photographing virtual FaceTime sessions, offering online coaching sessions and selling gift cards for people to purchase for friends and family, my business continued onward! In the fall of 2020, I knew that I wanted to continue to grow my business both financially and service-wise, and so I had made the decision to start advertising opening up my books for weddings in 2021. I had set a personal goal of booking 10 weddings and I ended up booking 15 throughout the Midwest and even my first international wedding in Italy! In addition to working weddings, I continued to photograph branding sessions, engagements, and families. I also continued to work alongside Brad second shooting the majority of his weddings, as well as for a handful of other wedding photographer friends in the industry. Oh! And did I mention that I also launched a second business where we specialize in photo editing for other photographers?! 2021 has definitely been my most growth-filled year yet.

But also with all of the business growth, there has come a lot of personal growth too. I found that although from the outside I appeared to be successful and happy, I was struggling a lot mentally and internally. At the beginning of the year I had decided to join an online Christian Yoga community and in June of 2021 I chose to invest in a personal and life coach. This choice has lead to a complete perspective and life shift for me. With each new month, I am learning more + more about myself, others, and the kind of life that I want to be living. I have found myself consistently re-evaluating my goals, intentions and the way that I am choosing to show up everyday.

There’s still a lot of self-discovery to be made here but for now I wanted to share a glimpse into my heart of what my journey has looked like so far and the direction I see it going.

As we begin to transition into the last quarter of the year and prepare for a new year ahead, I know that there is going to be some changes around here. From the services which I offer to the way that I show up online, it’s all going to shift a little. To be honest I still haven’t finalized all that I’ll still be offering but what I do know is that moving forward I will no longer be accepting any new wedding bookings for 2022/the near future. All current inquiries, I will be referring to Brad Hart Co. where I will still be 2nd shooting all weddings! I will still be offering engagement, couple and anniversary sessions for now so if you’re interested in working together for a portrait session definitely send in an inquiry!

As always, if you have any questions or would like to learn more about this transition, I’d be more than happy to get into a conversation! You can always send me an email via my contact form or land in my IG DM’s at @alisanicholle

Thank you so much to each and every one of you for taking the time to read along, learn more about my heart and my story and for supporting me as I continue to grow in this entrepreneurship journey. I will be forever grateful for the opportunities which has lead me to this point and am BEYOND excited for all that still lies ahead.

Grateful for you always.



XX,

Alisa Nicholle

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