Today we’d like to introduce you to Brittany Carr.
Hi Brittany, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
Somewhere in my mid-twenties, I was not fulfilled in any way, creatively or otherwise, by my day job. I’ve always been a creative person and interested in creative projects—my mother is a from-scratch home cook and baker and my parents raised us doing a lot of hands-on crafts and activities in the arts—and so I would bake as a way to release stress and try new things. There was something very therapeutic about it for me that helped me focus and tune out things that were weighing on me. Someone suggested selling the bakes I would bring in to work and eventually, I was between jobs and decided I really had nothing to lose. At the time, iced sugar cookies were starting to be all the rage and I ended up trying my hand at it. I’ve been making small-batch, custom orders of cakes and cookies ever since, so for about four years now. During COVID, I was doing less baking and I decided to get back into photography. It’s something I’ve always been interested in but never took the time to learn in a more professional and serious way. I started learning with travel photography, which I still love, but I’ve always been a huge advocate of boudoir photography. For me, it has always been a safe space and form of self-care where I can build this confidence and tear down hesitations or fears I have about my own body and how comfortable I feel or don’t feel in it. It helped me discover this well of power and strength I didn’t know I had that helped me define my sense of self. I asked some friends if they’d like to have a girls’ night and if I could practice my boudoir skills with them. It was such a lovely evening full of connection with each other and there was an incredible, intimate energy created there that really helped them remember how important it is to take time to focus on themselves and how amazing they felt because they took that time. That was something I wanted to be able to create for anyone and everyone who wants it. I asked my best friend, Shelbey Phillips, who is one of the best hype women out there if she wanted to just go for it and be my partner. We started an Instagram, put the word out with friends with really low prices, and have gone from there. It can be a lot to juggle both baking and photography on top of my full-time day job, which thankfully has transitioned into a more fulfilling industry I’m very passionate about, so I’m really grateful I have a wonderful business partner in Shelbey and support system in my friends and family.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
It definitely hasn’t been the smoothest of roads and there are always struggles as a small business owner. It can be difficult to stand out among a sea of other talented people and at times, it feels like I’m playing catch up with others in both industries. It’s also hard to establish strong boundaries—not only so you don’t experience burnout but so you don’t lower your prices when someone asks you to. You have to be prepared to know your worth the value of your time and skill. It’s hard to turn down work because of price without doubting that. I would love one day to be supported by a variety of my own projects and I always have a million ideas for them, including travel photography which I’ve been doing for the last year and a half, but I definitely still have my day job as a fundraiser!
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I think (and hope) my photography, and my baking is characterized by intention and detail. I don’t make or do anything on a production line. With baking, this cake or set of cookies is perfect for a celebration you’re having because it’s made specifically for you. With boudoir photography, it’s a very vulnerable space so we offer tarot readings to start out a session to really take a moment to breathe and connect with and talk about you. It’s about capturing that intimacy of the self while boosting your own sense of strength and power. I’m incredibly proud that I’ve taken pictures of friends who rarely have a kind word to say about their body but have loved the pictures I’ve taken of them. With travel photography, I’ve always been very curious about the little actions and moments that go unnoticed when they’re in the shadow of a bigger picture. The way a street food vendor cooks his food or a soccer game through a cluster of plants as you pass by on a walk. I also love to reframe things—instead of seeing a straight-on photo of a famous sign, I want to see it from around a column, just like you’d see it when you’re standing in line waiting for coffee. You can see yourself there in that small moment. We’re always moving so fast in life that it’s easy to overlook these small, lovely things in a person or place that I find completely mesmerizing.
Networking and finding a mentor can have such a positive impact on one’s life and career. Any advice?
Talk to who you already know first. I’m lucky in that I have a close friend who is a fantastic photographer and a great teacher so I was able to learn a lot very quickly. If you don’t know anyone, leverage any mutual connections you have or take it upon yourself to find people you admire. Don’t be afraid to tag someone on social media or reach out to them and ask a question, give a compliment, or start a conversation. No one else will do it for you. This is something I struggle with myself because I am naturally shy and I’m worried I will be bothering someone but I’m always surprised at others’ generosity and not only willingness but excitement to talk about a shared passion.
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @sunandpomstudio @brittakesphotos
- Facebook: @redbird_bakery