We had the good fortune of connecting with Gary and Elaine Jones and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Gary and Elaine, how do you define success?
True success, for us, is not measured by financial growth and status. Success is having a happy balance in both your personal and business life. Finding that successful balance has come with many challenges. The first obstacle was realizing where our passion was in the photography business. Through trial and error, we found our love for capturing a family’s season was the most rewarding. The second was outlining our strengths and weaknesses. The desire to please our clients is our number one strength. We started the ball rolling by discussing what was important to them. We asked what they wanted to see improved. They desired to keep it fun! Tell them what to wear. Tell them where to put their hands. Low stress. These things we at the top of their list. So we went to work! We started working with some of the best professionals in the industry. From education to professional coaches, our processes and techniques continue to evolve. We offer a five-step approach that encourages engagement with our clients. We get to know what they desire from their experience with us. Knowing the family dynamics can help us better plan a session that involves our client’s viewpoint. Knowing we have serviced our clients in the highest fashion and receiving a sincere handshake (or elbow bump) from them is the most rewarding feeling. In the weakness category, we embrace outside sources to work with us to fill in the voids. This can be a challenge within itself. Knowing and understanding what you do not know is an uphill battle. Having the right guidance is crucial to the success story. Setting goals that align with our passion and beliefs are essential to building a sustainable brand—determining where we bring the best value to our clientele and community. Through our journey, we have had the opportunity to work together with some great organizations and charities. Through these relationships, we have given back on multiple levels to our local communities and help other businesses grow. There is a real joy in knowing you have helped others succeed. To sum up, what success means to us is to love what you do with confidence. Help where help is needed. Help others to feel valued. Do not forget what is important in life and find that balance. If you keep these things in mind, you have success! Embrace your journey.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Please tell us more about your art. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. Art is in the eye of the beholder. Photography images are suggestive to ones individual viewpoint. We continuously looked for new angles, approaches and new concepts. Posed photos are always a must during a portrait session but capturing a family playing, dancing and just having fun during their session is breathtaking! That is what we are most excited about—creating that experience! How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? Hard work, dedication and prayer. Nothing comes easy or without obstacles. Perseverance to succeed while doing the right thing has top priority. What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. Do not take things for granted. All things come to those who wait. Work hard to improve and grow. Learn something new everyday and use it for the good of others. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story? All things are possible. Don’t quit. Keep growing as a person and a business. I will share a story I heard from a great speaker and author, Sharon Saffold. She wrote the book called Able Giants. She tells of the giants in her life. The people who gave her a boost when she was down. The ones that helped her when she needed it most. These people are her giants. We all have them. Maybe it was the teacher you had in elementary school or even the short encounter you had at the local grocery store. Whoever it was, they made an impact on your life. Be that giant for someone else. Offer the uplifting word of kindness. Offer a helping hand where needed. Do something special for a stranger, just because.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We love the outdoors! Hiking in the local parks is refreshing. We do not believe you always have to be moving. Preparing a good home-cooked meal and enjoying it on the deck with family and friends can be very rewarding. Having that time to catch up and have a few laughs is a win=win in our book. A good board game or a game of Pictionary can be the most interesting and exciting!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
We believe that all things happen thru our God and know we are truly blessed. He brings us the right people and groups. With that being said, there is not just one particular person or group. We have the love and support of several industry successful professionals. We belong to a group of photographers and mentors. Encouragement and sound advice is given on a daily basis or when needed. Educational courses and the read of a good book from a positive author. The list goes on and on.
G & E Studios