This months it’s 5 years since I launched my business at the BabyBarn Tradeshow in Trinity. At the Lovelist Circle networking meeting, I was asked by Nikolette Jones to be one of the first sister’s in the spotlight, where she asked me to share my story as well as give everyone there a call to action. As a celebration of my five years as a business owner on the island, I thought I share my story with you too.
The Source of my passion:
My world evolves around my family and my photography and as a lifestyle and portrait photographer these parts of my life are entwined together – I love capturing and creating pieces of art that will become family heirlooms for my clients. I love the intimacy of my business, connecting with people, getting to know my client’s stories, their values and becoming part of their world even if it is only for a day! I love that they feel they can trust me, that they relax with me and then I can capture the personalities and the interaction and the pure heart of their family.
My business grew out of a secret dream and frustration. As a young girl I loved making collages, learning calligraphy as well as photographing with my ‘point and shoot’ camera but the messages from those around me was clear, none of that would lead to a “proper job”. So, I went to university to study and focused on getting just that, a proper job! After years of working for IT companies in Stockholm and London, specialising in financial software, I felt ill and numb. My creative flare and spirit was dead. I needed change.
By the age of thirty-one I was pregnant with our son, by thirty-three I had two children under the age of three and life in the city seemed very, very far away. Life as a mother was good, but I also felt lost in the sea of sleep-deprivation, laundry, nappies and food shopping, I felt a strong urge to do something for me and that is how I rekindled my love for photography.
Instead of an eternity ring I asked for a digital SLR, I threw myself into online photography courses and I felt that my spirit, health and self-belief improved. By the time we moved to Jersey I’d signed up to do a one year long photography and business course with Aspire Photography Training in Cumbria, UK. I loved it, I blossomed.
It also turned out to be a great way to get to know a new area, we were still new to Jersey and developing the photography business meant that I had to get out there, I had to connect with people and other businesses to build my brand, website and client base.
Today I also see my business as my vehicle of fun! Through my business I get to meet great, fun-loving families, businesses and charities who share my joy of the simple life. I have finally found the work /life balance that works for me, and with that comes a huge feeling of relief and contentment – I would even go as far as saying freedom.
I’m Gisela Olsson, of Gisela Olsson Photography, thank you for being part of my journey!