We had the good fortune of connecting with Christian Grant and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Christian, we’d love for you to start things off by telling us something about your industry that we and others not in the industry might be unaware of?
Most people are unaware of how much of my job is not photography related. It’s probably 20% actual photography (the part I love) and 80% business (the part I tolerate in order to be able to do what I love.) Many people are also unaware of how much money goes to taxes and back into the business. They see the cost for an hour photo shoot and think I made that much in an hour but that’s not the case! They don’t see the hours it took working on the business beforehand to bring in that job and the hours it will take afterward to process and deliver the photos from that job.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m very friendly and funny and that definitely comes through when working with clients. My clients tell me all the time how comfortable I make them feel and how much fun they had at their session. Even dads and husbands who are notorious for not enjoying getting their photos taken will tell me how their session with me was different than all the others and they actually enjoyed themselves! The relating to people part definitely comes easy to me but the business side is definitely a struggle sometimes. There is just so much more to it than people realize, especially as a small business owner who has to wear all the hats! I listen to podcasts and follow educators and mentors to absorb all the information and education I can. I’m constantly learning how to do the business side of things better and making adjustments along the way to better serve myself and my clients. One of the biggest lessons I had to learn (and am still learning) is getting over my personal issues when it comes to money and charging the right amount to be a profitable business. Tracking my numbers and accurately accounting for everything was a huge eye-opener but sticking to my guns and not racing to the bottom of the pricing barrel just to get a job was something I had to work on and is still tough sometimes. I just have to remember that if I don’t charge profitably to cover my business expenses and pay myself, then I’m robbing myself and my family twice by taking hours of my time away from them and also by basically working for free. It has helped me say no to the wrong jobs which in turn gave me the freedom and availability to say yes to the right ones.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I am definitely guilty of not being a tourist in my own town, haha. I typically avoid the most crowded spots and opt to stay in more often than not. But I do love planning sister dates with my 3 sisters and 2 sisters-in-law and one of our favorite spots is Superica for the best Mexican food and shopping at Avalon. We also usually hit up Jeni’s Ice Cream for a treat. Ponce City Market is also a favorite for shopping and so many good restaurants! I have an almost 3-year-old so we also like to plan kid-friendly outings to the aquarium, zoo, and children’s museum when we’re all together.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost, God. He deserves all the credit and praise for any success in my life and everything I do is for His glory! I also want to give a shoutout to my mentor and coach, Ashley Freehan. She found me on social media and just poured into me with encouragement and advice and 5 months ago I joined her group coaching program for Mom photographers. That really helped kick my butt into gear and stop treating my business like a hobby.

Website: www.christianmichellephotography.com

Instagram: www.instagram.com/christianmichellephotography

Facebook: www.facebook.com/christianmichellephotography

Image Credits
Christian Michelle Photography

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