First, I want to start off by saying, I'm so excited for you and proud that you're taking this leap - whether you're starting your business or taking it to the next level! I want you to succeed, use your money wisely and feel less overwhelmed than I did when I started, so I've gathered my favorite tools, resources and education to help you. Consider this everything I wished I would have known when I started...
Honeybook is worth all the hype and more. This platform has streamlined my process, systemized my workflow & made my business feel 100x more professional. Simplify your client communication, send contracts & invoices, safely receive payments, and more. (I would invest in this once you begin booking paid sessions.)
I wish I would have invested in these as soon as I started charging for sessions. Save yourself time, money and stress by protecting yourself legally from the start. These templates are easy to use and understand and are written by lawyers, specifically for creative entrepreneurs.
Let me just say, I am kicking myself for not investing in this sooner. I'm pretty good at keeping track of my business expenses and income, but mileage is never something I've kept track of well UNTIL using this app. Worry about one less thing and invest in this. (You'll thank yourself come tax time.)
Flodesk allows you to create beautiful newsletters & emails in minutes. The templates are absolutely gorgeous and I've had so many trusted friends recommend this platform to me. If you're looking for an email service provider, this is my favorite option out there.
My favorite online system for managing projects, systems and storing all of my business information. The best part: it is completely free to use! If you're just getting started, I recommend checking out some of their help tutorials, like this one here.
My FAVORITE platform for building your website. It is SO incredibly easy to use and customize. If you’re just starting out, I recommend starting with one of their free design templates until you narrow in on your style & brand. (My style changed so much in my first few years as I grew!)
For culling photos, in lighting speed. If you are a photographer, DO NOT wait. This is an absolute necessity (and I don’t say that about everything). This is the one app that has saved me the most time, and it’s a one-time purchase (not a subscription 🙌🏻). Buy immediately.
There's not much else to say here, except that Lightroom is the BEST tool for editing your photos. Nothing else compares! If you're looking for presets or editing tips, I've noted some of my favorites in the "Educators" section below!
This is such a good resource when you're first starting out!! Try out your gear before you buy with a great rental service. I rented a ton before I had enough gear to get me through a wedding season. Whether you have Nikon or Canon, etc... they have it all.
Not a necessity, but this has saved me SO much time when it comes to blogging my sessions and weddings. I have yet to find a better tool for creating beautiful blog galleries at lighting speed. Use code ANGELA31 for 15% off your subscription!
Create professional and beautiful album designs in minutes with Smart Albums. I've tried other album design software out there, and this platform is truly the fastest & simplest from start to finish.
I've tried quite a few different gallery delivery platforms and this one has my heart. The gallery templates are stunning and easily customizable. Plus, each gallery includes a personalized store which allows you to easily sell professional quality albums & prints.
These two share my heart for creating an experience that is meaningful. They have so much wisdom to share when it comes to guiding clients into poses & prompts that bring out joy, meaning & connection. When they reopen the doors, I highly recommend investing in their "Embracing Connection Masterclass." It's my favorite course I've ever invested in.
Bailey has been a photographer in the Duluth area for over 10 years and has so much brilliance to share. This is insider information, but she's going to be launching a full shop of resources for photographers & entrepreneurs in January of 2020, so keep your eyes out for that! We can giddily await her launch together.
Lindsey & Evie are two of my favorites to follow along with in the industry. In the past few years, they launched the Heart University to help others build successful careers while living balanced lives. They offer courses, workshops and some free resources (including a podcast) that are great for anyone starting photography!
Dawn is one of my photographer crushes -- I love her editing style. She has a couple of presets (that I've heard amazing things about) and a shop full of courses and guides that I would trust wholeheartedly. For beginners, I recommend her Guide to Camera Settings.
I first fell in love with India's work, but she also has so much wisdom to share on everything from client communication, workflow to running a business. I've never been disappointed with one of her guides and have invested in quite a few!
Emily took our photos in Cannon Beach and I cannot recommend her enough! She just released a new set of presets (in collaboration with Dawn Charles) and has a shop filled with great education. If you're interested in learning more about posing, her posing course is gold.
Katelyn James is a brilliant photographer and she has so many affordable resources for every stage of business. For beginners, or those who are wanting to get into weddings, I recommend joining her "KJ All Access" group where you can access videos of her shooting a whole wedding day. (It's seriously so valuable.)
Amy and Jordan are long-time favorites of mine. They both used to be teachers and you can tell because they are incredibly gifted educators. They have SO many resources and I frequently visit their blog whenever I have photography related questions.