Laura Yancy was featured at our 2015 Entrepreneur Marketplace and is the founder of LKYimages. We’re proud to announce that YP is partnering with LKYimages for photography and headshots for members for 2015-16! Check out her thoughts on her field and recommendations for other entrepreneurs below!
How long have you been a photographer?
My photography journey officially began in May of 2014 and it has been such a blessing to say the least. Full of excitement, surprises, and many lessons, I’m extremely grateful that I have been able to accomplish all that I have in such short time frame.
When did you learn photography was a passion of yours?
I’ve been passionate about learning the art of photography ever since 2011 and when I finally had the opportunity to explore that curiosity, I completely fell in love. In 2014, I decided to start my own fashion blog where I would take photos of stylish individuals and post them as features, alongside my own personal blog posts. I used it as an opportunity to also test the waters with photography as I merged that with another huge interest of mine. Shortly after capturing images of others for my blog, my love for photography officially stemmed and intensified. At that point, I decided to devote all of my time to learning everything that I possibly could to perfect my newfound craft.
What steps did you take to get into the field and gain experience?
Deciding to invest in photography was the most important step for me. By investing, I mean spending hours teaching myself everything that I possibly could learn about photography, doing loads of research, practicing every chance I got, and of course, investing money into purchasing my own photography equipment. As for gaining experience, it simply came with practice and execution. For me, everything is an experience and I’m still gaining that and learning on a daily basis. This is something that will never end and I’m excited about that.
What has been the most difficult aspect of starting your own business?
In the beginning, it was accepting the fact that not everyone that you would like to support you, will support you or believe in your mission. That can definitely be a hard pill to swallow for any entrepreneur but I believe it always boils down to what you allow to get the best of you. I’ve learned that people, specifically friends and loved ones, may show their support in a different way and when they don’t, I just have to understand that nobody owes me anything. Sometimes we let our emotions get the best of us and expect certain things to be handed to us on a silver platter when in all actuality, you have to work hard for everything you want in life and genuine support is one of them. Regardless, my mission remains in tact and I will always work hard towards it. I can only be grateful and super appreciative for the support that I do get.
What is your vision for your company?
God willing, my vision for LKYIMAGES is to make it as far as I possibly can highlighting and capturing the beauty, joy, and emotion that lies within all of us, especially people of color. I want to be able to paint another type of picture of what beauty means to me as opposed to the type of image that the photography industry seems to currently be saturated with. I would also love to see more women emerge and break barriers in this male dominated field. It’s definitely time for a little change in this industry and I pray that through my success, I will be able to influence such.
Any advice for future entrepreneurs who are still searching for their dream?
Do everything that you possibly want to to do, whether it’s out of curiosity or if it’s something that has been on your mind for a very long time. Be limitless with your abilities and take risks! Turn your thoughts and plans into action and DO NOT be afraid to fail because failure will always put you one step closer to your dreams when you don’t give up. Utilize your skill sets along with your talents and build on every last one of them. Do a lot of research about the business that you want to pursue and push yourself to learn as much as possible. It also pays to read a book or two about accounting and finance, you won’t regret it! Planning is very important, but the most valuable lessons will stem from experience so do not hesitate to take your leap of faith! Never forget that if you’re great at what you do, you can always be better so perfecting your craft is a life-long process. Most importantly, always believe in yourself first before expecting others to believe in you!