We had the good fortune of connecting with Ashleigh Mitchell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ashleigh, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I always had an eye for photography and it started at a really young age. My father first introduced me to digital photography by always taking my picture growing up. And to my surprise today, being a photographer myself, that as a child I did not like having my photo taken, rather I wanted to be the one taking pictures. So I started with taking photos of my toys, family and pets and it grew into taking photos of my friends. No fancy camera or fancy training. I loved disposable cameras and getting the film developed at the drug store. I created several scrap books and my room was covered with so many 4×6 photos, you could hardly see the walls! My first job at 16, I worked for Kodak and snapped photos of people and their family or sold prints. I am proud to say, I am a self-taught photographer and absolutely love to create still-shots of real experiences for my couples and their families to enjoy for generations to come. There is nothing I love more than knowing people can remember a moment in time through the moment I captured for them.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
There is nothing in this world I love more than love itself. Call me a hopeless romantic, a dreamer, an idealist, or maybe just a flat out sap. I love it and I love to capture it. I love capturing the golden glow of the sunset, the windy hair in a laughing face, the contrast of the colors that nature has to offer and the most raw, authentic feelings in that exact moment. Being a full time Wedding photographer took A LOT of dedication. When I first started my business in 2015, I was going to college full time and working as a server at two restaurants. I considered my photography more of a “hobby” while I was getting my degree. It wasn’t until I took a leap of faith in the beginning of 2018 by leaving my job and going full time with photography did I realize the potential I had. And in order to be completely full time, I had to dedicate the time I was putting into my other job(s) and put that time into my business. The minute I made the switch… well, the rest is history. But confidence didn’t come easy. It was also a lot of trial and error. Some of the biggest lessons I’ve learned by being a small business owner is; To trust your gut. To find a true balance between your business and your personal life (I still struggle with this). The time and effort you put into your business is what you will get out. Don’t compare yourself to anyone or anything and don’t give up (so cheesy, but true).
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My fiancé Brian deserves all the recognition in the world for helping me pursue my business. Without his constant motivation and push, I would’ve never had the guts to fully pursue my photography career full time. I feel so lucky to come home to him and tell him all about my wedding days and shoots.