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Rising Stars: Meet Emily Christy

Today we’d like to introduce you to Emily Christy. 

Hi Emily, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Ever since I was a kid, I have always been interested in all things creative. It started withdrawing as soon as I could hold a pencil, then in elementary school, I started performing in theatre productions. From 4th grade until my high school graduation, I was acting, singing, and dancing. After high school graduation, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I attended UC Blue Ash college for two years and earned my associate of the arts degree in communications. I immediately started working full-time after college at a large insurance company and I still work there currently. 

However, just before my 1-year anniversary at work, Covid-19 started. My company switched from being in the office every day to full-time working from home. In late March of 2020, I was already feeling the effects of the pandemic and needed to try something new as a creative outlet. I had always wanted to try my hand at photography but wasn’t sure where to start. An old friend of mine posted his Canon Rebel T6i for sale on Instagram for $250. After a lot of consideration, I met up with him in his church parking lot and bought my first used DSLR camera. 

2 months after I bought my camera, my husband and I got married on Tuesday during the pandemic in my parent’s backyard. Although I took his last name, Christy, I wasn’t ready to fully lose my maiden name. I named my photography business after my maiden name, Gieske, and it’s very special to me. 

I started taking portraits of my best friend and she has been my go-to model ever since. It wasn’t long after that I started charging for sessions and getting an increase in business. My husband, family, and friends are incredibly supportive and share my business information constantly. It’s only been 2 years since I started my photography journey and I am so proud of my growth. It is still my side hustle, but one day I hope to do it full-time as my career. My first camera carried my business for over a year and a half before I got a new one, but it truly was the best $250 I ever spent. It built my business to be what it is today and it taught me that’s it’s not about having the best quality equipment, just using what you have to the best of your ability. 

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Being an entrepreneur is not an easy or smooth road. There is so much you have to learn and juggle. Although it is extremely rewarding when you have even the smallest win, there will be days where you feel like you lost and those days can be hard to get past. I have made it a priority to focus on the many wins, rather than the few losses. Creating your own business is a big risk and you cannot please everyone. 

My biggest struggle is dealing with clients who are unhappy with their photos. I have only had this situation come up twice, but in both situations, their problem with the images came from their own personal insecurities, rather than my ability to capture a great image. I would never deliver a gallery I didn’t feel was good, but you cannot make people see how beautiful they are, but as a photographer, it’s my job to try my best. At the end of the day, that’s all I can do! 

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I specialize in portrait and lifestyle photos. I take photos for families, couples, seniors, babies, you name it! I also do boudoir photos that I have a separate Instagram page for. Starting later this year, I will now be taking on photography for small weddings as well to expand my business and my skills! 

I am most proud of the improvement in the quality of work in such a short amount of time. As a self-taught photographer and entrepreneur, watching my business grow is incredibly rewarding. 

What sets me apart from other photographers is my commitment to my clients. I try to be as flexible as possible with my clients and their schedules. I also make my best effort to create a positive atmosphere for photoshoots because I know it can be stressful or awkward for those not comfortable being in front of the camera. Many of my client reviews on Facebook and my website are not just raving about my photography skills, but my personality and the way I create a friendship by working with them. There is so much love and appreciation in my heart for the clients of mine who continuously come back to me for all of their photography needs. 

How can people work with you, collaborate with you, or support you?
Reach out to me through any of my links! Whether that be Instagram DMs, Facebook messenger, the contact page on my website, or my business email! 

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Gieske Photography

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