“Community over competition.”
“Collaboration is key!”
“Real queens fix each other’s crowns.”
These quotes may be a bit cliche but they capture everything that I want my GossBoss brand to encompass. I wholeheartedly believe that you will not succeed in your personal life or your business without a strong support network to lean on during the hard times and to help celebrate the wins.
I was a very proud one-woman-show for the first 2.5 years of my business. Prior to GossBoss I ran a side hustle production company with two partners, but after I had my son we decided to part ways. I felt that if I wanted to get shit done I needed to do it myself and that worked for a while. But then the business kept growing and growing and I just couldn’t handle the level and quality of work I so desperately wanted to provide to my clients. And I felt the near impossible work-life balance almost implode.
While this was mostly the motivation behind creating a team, I wanted to focus on visual branding packages so that my clients felt much more at ease before and during their shoots and fully understood how best to utilize their branded visuals. The brand strategy behind it all is so crucial but was so lacking with almost all of my clients. Cue Julie Plake McMinn who was introduced to me through a mutual friend/client. Julie is a brand strategist that has worked with big brands like AHN, Mother of All Baby Showers, etc., but most famously got her start as Bethenny Frankel’s assistant/”Coordinator of Chaos” and helped her build the Skinnygirl brand. Her experience and knowledge on developing the brand foundation of a business is how I best can frame a visual photo or video shoot. Those images are going to be beautiful regardless but need to work FOR and WITH your brand values/mission.
The biggest thing I missed about having partners was help with the heavy lifting that the production title comes with. Photo and video equipment is mostly big and heavy, including but not limited to lighting, props, cameras, and/or tripods. When my neighbor stopped at my house late last year and suggested that I mentor her high school daughter who was growing her own photography business I had a better idea! Why didn’t she just work for me and help me on shoots? I’d pay her of course and she would get to learn all the ins and outs of the biz by actually living it. Paige Crawley turned out to be everything and more I’d hoped for in a photo assistant. She is motivated, helpful, kind, ambitious, and gracious. She has a wonderful eye and with a couple more months of practice I’m enlisting her to take my next round of brand photos.
I think a lot of people know me as a photographer but all of this began with creating videos over 14 years ago. Video is still so dear to my heart, but I knew it was time to bring on some help. My lifestyle as a work-at-home mom simply doesn’t allow me the dedicated, uninterrupted time for video editing and again that blasted work-life balance. I put a callout in a local videographer Facebook group and Amanda Sanchez answered the call. We met at Dunkin and she didn’t seem phased at all with my sweet 1-year-old Cecelia who had just started walking and ran all over the store during our meeting. I kept telling her, “I swear I’m a legitimate business owner!” haha! As a wedding videographer she was no stranger to video storytelling, but new to working with other entrepreneurs. She has created pure magic with every piece of footage I send her to edit and on shoots she now has the knowledge to lead the interviews and direct the clients while filming. I’m so grateful that we connected at Dunkin that rainy morning in December.
And then there’s Christina Stein Imberlina who is the spark behind my newfound wave of confidence. I asked her to work with team GossBoss after I hired her for a personal shopping trip in January. In three short hours I felt like I finally had a better grasp of ME: my body, my style, and my confidence after losing all of those things after having 2 kids in 3 years. I fell victim to the entrepreneurial mom lifestyle and uniform of leggings, oversized tee shirts and not a bra in site. Christina gave me that power and “va-va-voom” I so desperately needed in my personal life and then so easily translated into my business. I knew I had to have her help all of my clients too. I thought long and hard about if styling was a necessity for a photo and video shoot and I can confidently say that it’s a non-negotiable. For you to sit there and open your heart and tell your story through photos and video you need to be comfortable in your skin and also what’s so closely to your skin, your clothes. Christina and her expertise are the answer to the #1 question all of my clients and potential clients ask: “What do I wear?”