Welcome to a new day, Boss Babes! We hope your mug is full & your heart is ready to tackle whatever comes your way. But first, meet Ashlee Hamon of Ashlee Hamon Photography! Ashlee is a bright beam of light. She's a busy bee, so when I had a few glasses of wine with her at Rooster & the Till before I publicly launched Boss Babe Club, I was so glad to get to see a good friend and also pick her brain about her own entrepreneur story. With plenty of confidence & gumption, she started with the entry level gear she had and she shot every wedding and event she could as she built her photography business up over the next 5 years to the thriving, stylish state it’s currently in. Her honesty and encouragement have helped me personally so much, and I hope you’ll have fun e-meeting her if you haven’t met her in real life yet, or re-appreciating how awesome she is if you already know & love her. Enjoy her stories, gumption, & words. And stay BOSS. xx
Tell us about yourself and what you do!
I’m Ashlee! Let's pretend we just hugged and now I'm beaming a smile at you! I'm a very enthusiastic, organized, and artistic professional photographer in Tampa, Florida. I love LOVE and LIGHT and it takes a lot of restraint to not end every sentence with an exclamation point! At the same time, I am also a soulful hopeless romantic.
I grew up here in Tampa, the oldest of 3 children, one of whom is mentally disabled. I was always a nerdy "A" student and an athlete, participating in obscure sports like synchronized swimming and collegiate women's crew. I went on to graduate from UCF with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Photography. GO KNIGHTS! After graduation, I went around the world for a year before starting my business full time. I’ve traveled to Australia, Thailand, Cambodia, England, Wales, Czech Republic, Hungary, Iceland, Bali, Chile, St. Lucia, and Turks & Caicos. On my wish list is New Zealand, Mexico, Spain, Italy, Croatia, and Madagascar.
How did your business begin?
After traveling abroad for a year I was ready to come home and plant roots. I knew I wanted to make my living with photography and hit the ground running with no more back up plans or side jobs. I decided to only take work that involved me shooting and the focus paid off! Within a few months i was free lancing for 2 different companies and booking my own clients. Thank goodness for family and friends! Weddings seemed a natural fit and the variety and intensity that they offer still inspires me today.
What’s 1 challenge you’ve faced and 1 success you’ve had since you’ve created your business?
I would say that the biggest challenge is to outdo yourself year after year. The bar is being raised every day in this industry. As much as that is exciting and inspiring it can also be exhausting. Finding a balance while growing is what I strive for.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received and has it come in handy for you?
Have a good contract! Have clear communication with your clients is priceless. Taking the time to maintain a solid contract has given myself and my clients the protection we deserve when entering into working together. Trust is key.
When are you at your happiest?
When the sun is about to slip past the horizon and I see two people in love through my viewfinder. When all of the crazy elements of time, place, wardrobe, mood, energy, equipment, and light come together to create a compelling and emotive image....that is my joy.
What do you tell yourself when things get difficult?
My mantras are: "I always have more than I need." and "Everyday in every way it's getting better and better.”
What are you grateful for?
People! My amazing clients allow me to support myself and express myself at the same time.
What’s 1 personal goal and 1 business goal you plan to accomplish this year?
On the personal side I would like to follow through on practicing yoga consistently. And as I business I want to generate more value, specifically passive income that does not require MORE of me or my time.
Where can you be found on a Tuesday afternoon?
Behind the computer finishing a blog post.
Where can we find you on a Friday evening?
Having a glass of Sauvignon Blanc with girlfriends or at the movies with my boyfriend.
Where can you be found on a Sunday morning?
Finish this sentence:
I love: cats.
I’m always looking for: fun!
My inspiration is: light and color.
I’ll never: give up.