What really excites me is that having a cohesive and professional brand and website is helping me connect not just with my ideal bride, but it is also helping me connect with other wedding professionals. Having a brand that reflects my passions and tastes is a clear bridge towards working with other people who share similar passions and dreams – and there is nothing that excites me more than collaborating creatively with other artists.
Personally I think that it has given me confidence in my own voice and style – and I am continually refining my work now to make that voice stronger. I always get excited when I post something and people respond by saying “This is so YOU!” and I know that they are right because they see it fit in with everything else I am passionate about.
I think a lot of people are scared to commit to something – whether it’s a logo or color or website – but thinking that your branding needs to be what you personally like can be misleading. Instead, thinking about it from the perspective of what I want people to feel, has given me a much clearer focus and vision for my business. Once Lara helped me figure out the big picture for my branding, all the little decisions I began to make day to day became easier. In that way making hard decisions on what your brand is going to be about can actually help make your life as a business owner easier in the long run, and I’m so glad I went through the process fully.
I was afraid that they would want to get rid of my logo, which I felt was strong. Instead, they agreed that I should keep it, but they helped me build a brand experience around it – the colors, the collateral. In the end my logo has become even better because they helped me figure out what else it needed. I was also afraid of picking colors because I was worried that I would change my mind about them later. Instead, they helped me figure out what I wanted my brand to feel like, and once we did that work, I felt confident about choosing colors, and I haven’t regretted a single color choice since.
I remember having a moment the day that Emily sent me my pricing guide. As I scrolled through that PDF tears literally began to stream down my face. Finally, I felt like my work, that I had been practicing so hard to perfect, finally had a place where it belonged. It had text, it had colors, and it had a place where people could see it – and my worth as an artist – on a canvas that didn’t distract from it. In a lot of ways building this brand and website with Lara and Emily helped me dream bigger dreams for my business than I ever thought possible. I remember that early process of talking through my vision with Lara and every challenge she gave me lit a fire in me to reach farther. I feel like at the end of this branding process I am now looking at the beginning of becoming who I am meant to be in this industry and with my business.
To me the most exciting moments were when people didn’t just tell me how beautiful everything was – and they did tell me that – but when they told me that everything felt GENUINE. REAL. And also when they would tell me that it was inspiring, and taking everything to the next level. Those comments fired me up because I felt like we had achieved the goal – that this was more than a new look – it was a new dream.
I always felt the need to justify things – whether it was my pricing – or my website not working properly – or whatever it was – I felt like I couldn’t be completely proud of my work. Now I feel like my best is out there for everyone to see, and I don’t have to worry if they don’t like it, because if they don’t then they simply aren’t the right clients for me. There is freedom now from those worries.
A goal that I continue to strive for is to run a business with integrity. To have great work and a beautiful website and brand to showcase it is amazing but I want to deliver on everything I promise through that and much more. This year I am striving to grow as an artist, figure out how to surprise and delight my brides, and to share my progress as authentically as I can through writing on my blog. One of my goals is one day to attend Engage! so I am going to put that out in the universe as well. And maybe one day write a book, as soon as I can figure out what the story should be about.
Everything good that has happened to me in the past year has been a result of following an inkling and taking a risk, even when I couldn’t fully justify it. I think that’s what it means to follow your heart. I’m still figuring things out. As my husband constantly reminds me when I’m freaking out (as I tend to do a LOT, because a perfectionist) – what is really the worst that can happen? Say it out loud. And like I do in those moments, you might realize the worst that can happen isn’t worth ignoring your heart.
EMILY’S NEW SITE
EMILY’S NEW BLOG
MORE FROM EMILY ON HER BRANDING