Today we take a peek inside the inspiring space of Ashley Steeby Photography.
In what kind of space is your studio located?
How long have you been there?
What makes your studio special?
Everything about this studio has become so special to me. This space has so much character; from the fun exterior colors and shutters, to the brick sidewalk leading up to the garden and french door. When clients first arrive, they see their names on a chalkboard welcoming them into their session or meeting (score!). We totally remodeled the inside from the floors to the ceilings and didn't miss any detail! I wanted my personality to come through in the design and translate a happy, feel good energy to flow through the space with pops of colors, textures and natural light.
How has it helped your business?
In the 4 short months that I have opened the space (I've been in business for 2 years out of my home office) my sales and bookings have more than quadrupled. The exclusivity of having a commercial location has also exposed my business to networking opportunities that I didn't see while I was working out of my home. Oh, and the concept of having a separation of home and business has been quite the blessing!
What products do you sell the most?
Wedding albums and canvas wall art are some of my clients favorite products! I also love WHCC's metallic prints and custom DVD cases, they feel so good in your hands!
Do you have any tips for opening a studio?
When I started dreaming about my own studio, it was originally a place that I wanted to simply bring clients into for meetings and newborn sessions. As the dream of a studio became a reality, my goal for this space became so much more than 4 walls and a couch. This is an experience; one which clients love so much that they have to tell their friends about. My hope is that this place brings joy into the lives of my clients, almost making their lives even better (if not, the Chocolate Raspberry Coffee from the Keurig will do the trick!). If you're thinking about opening a studio, you'll want to be at a comfortable place in your business (finance-wise) and make sure you're comfortable with the rent/mortgage payment. I was at the right place and right time for a studio and it's worked out fabulously so far (and without a business partner/studio-mate!). Location is also key and don't settle for something that doesn't flow with your branding. If it's meant to be, it will work out!
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From a very early age I loved taking pictures and looking at them in magazines and books, but the art of photography captured my heart when I was a teenager, on my first overseas trip to Wales. From that point, I began shooting with a little film SLR and having my friend model for me. In college I took some digital photography and visual communication courses as part of my communication studies major, and decided to pursue a career in photography. I became a legal business and took my first paid client at age 20, and it's been quite a journey and adventure over the past nine years.
I secretly bought a mail-order 35mm camera when I was 15, and took lots of ordinary photos of animals and nature for several years. Although I majored in art and studied photography in college, my career started in marketing and advertising, from the client service end. Then I had the most beautiful baby, found my old camera and realized how much I love photographing people.