Today I am thrilled to introduce Essex based Grace Elizabeth, an alternative wedding photographer with a flair for unobtrusive, natural, relaxed wedding, destination wedding and lifestyle photography.
Grace won my Birthday Giveaway on the Blog, and I am excited to have her on board as a Blog Sponsor, and to be able to share her amazing work over the next few months.
I hand over to Grace to tell you all about her blossoming Business…
Who are you, and what do you do?
I’m Grace Elizabeth, and I’m a wedding and lifestyle photographer from Colchester in Essex, UK!
When and why did you start your Company?
The actual start date of my company is a little bit unknown, because I’ve really been photographing on and off since I was 16 when I photographed my first wedding.
I then went on to do a two year photography degree, and in the last year of my foundation degree in 2015, I registered as self employed.
I didn’t have any idea that I wanted to be a wedding photographer when I graduated, but the more people I met and the more projects I undertook, the more that storytelling became a big part of my work.
I loved that you could tell stories through images so much.
Then I then went on to do a ‘top up’ year for my degree at another university so that I would achieve my full BA Honours, and it also gave me a chance to begin building my client base before I graduated in the summer of 2016.
I worked hard to meet lots of lovely people, and I enjoyed learning about them. Individuality is what makes us unique after all!
After I graduated, I had a part time job for a year working in retail (which I actually loved!), followed by working another year in a different part time job (which I still go back to to shoot for commercially).
In July 2018 I made the leap to going full time self employed.
What inspires you?
I think my website summarises this pretty well!
I am inspired by so many different things and it’s ever changing and ever growing too, just like life really!
On the one hand, I am inspired by the beauty in the little things, and on the other, I am inspired and energised by the excitement that comes with big adventures.
I am inspired by grand oak trees, vast oceans and foggy mornings, but I am equally inspired by silence, sad playlists and reflection.
I am also a believer that we all have the ability to leave the world in a better place than it began, which is a huge inspiration to me because I run my business as ethically as possible and with vegan and eco-friendly principles.
Do you have a favourite wedding style?
My favourite wedding style is always going to be something a little bit boho, but with a bit of an edge.
I love the juxtaposition between a flowy, lace dress with an armour of tattoos, quirky shoes and a bit of flair for example.
I love when people hand pick their wedding items from charity shops, or as hand me downs, or sometimes even making them themselves or with the help of family, I think that’s really cool!
What do you love most about your Job?
I will always refer back to a quote someone once said to me at a wedding and that was ‘Your job must be really cool, you get to see people happy all of the time!’ and that really resonated with me.
I love the trust people give to you, and the intimate moments they let you be present at.
I love that you get to see and document the most wonderful moments for people, and that they treat me less often like ‘just another supplier’ and more often like a friend.
For many of my clients, I don’t just see them the once. Whether they come back to me for photos, or we keep in touch as friends, it’s always so rewarding.
This job is truly incredible, because it opens you up to new connections and allows you to be present at some of the loveliest moments.
What do you do in your chill time/perfect day off?
In my chill time, there’s a few things I love to do! I generally love a good charity shop (if you hadn’t noticed already!) and I also love playing guitar when I get a moment.
If I’m out and about, I’m usually down by the seaside somewhere, especially in Devon, where I spent a lot of my teenage years and where my long distance boyfriend lives.
But on the daily? I love relaxing with a cup of tea, some vegan cake and a good Netflix series!
What is your greatest achievement?
My greatest achievement is really hard to define, because there are so many things that I am proud of and so many weddings I adore, so many families I have loved working with and so many projects I have been so proud to have started and finished.
But my greatest achievement, which came as a result of all of those things together, was working on my self confidence.
If you’d have met me at school, I was known as the shy child. I was confident in the right classes, but I wasn’t a confident person
. In the past few years I’ve made it my mantra to do two things: 1 – To say YES to opportunities. 2 – ‘Be scared, do it anyway.’
The second one I actually have on a Lightbox above my desk as a constant reminder.
I am so proud of the woman I have become and of the way I have built my little business up and thus built my confidence.
Self growth is the most rewarding thing!
What do you see as the future of your Company?
In the future, I’d just love to keep working with more wonderful people.
I’m always inspired by other #girlbosses too, and one day I’d love to be able to mentor other people, specifically young entrepreneurs who might be a bit lost at the start of their journey.
I have a lot to learn before I feel ready to educate people, but someone once told me to ‘pay things forward’ and I would love to be able to educate and help others with their businesses one day through teaching them the things I have learned over the years.
To Contact Grace Elizabeth Photography