Nov 2014. Many, many years ago, if 4 years can count as so ahah! I bought myself a used camera from Kijiji. I’ve always been interested in photography; how it worked, the behind the scenes kinda thing. But, for many reasons, my parents never wanted to buy me a good camera, so as a grownup I had to buy one myself.
If any of you reading this are photographers, well, I’ve started off with an old Canon 1000D.
YUP, THAT OLD AHAH! The max ISO it could go to was 1000. I’m not even kidding ahaha!
But, it was in perfect shape and made the job, so what are you gonna do!
I’ve started off by taking a few shots of people and things around me. Like my cats, a few trees and family and friends. But when I bought that camera, I had in mind to really LEARN to use it, and not just clicks on the buttons hoping it would make something pretty.
I jumped on Youtube and that’s where I learned all the basics.
YES GUYS, you can learn literally EVERYTHING there is to know on Youtube & Google! You do not always have to go the easy way and ask people to tell you what they spent hours trying to learn themselves! 😉
So! I learned what ISO, aperture and shutter speed were. I learned how to use them altogether and
I LOVED IT.
March 2015. I found it so interesting to be able to control the light in all these different ways, that I bought myself a one-day class on photography for beginners with a professional photographer.
I learned A LOT, during that class, but I mostly fell in love with photography.
For the first time in my life, I had found something I could do and read about EVERY DAY without getting tired of it.
At that time I was still in school, in cegep (or college for those who doesn’t know what cegep is), and I was studying in human science. I had in mind to get into psychology when I’d get to university. I’ve gotta say that my psychology classes were the only classes that really interested me. I was spending all my other classes on my phone or doing homeworks so I would not have to do them at home. To be honest, I hated school, I just didn’t want to admit it at that time! I really thought I wanted to work in psychology and knew I had to go through school for that. I thought you’d have to go to school for any job.
I had just started cegep, I still had 2 years ahead of me if I’m not mistaken. But I never finished them. Nope, nope. But we’ll get to this later.
Spring + Summer 2016. After a year and a half, mixing school + my work in a pharmacy + photography on the side. I learned more and more about photography. Doing mostly portraits of my friends, friends of my friends and a few of models I found on Instagram.
And after a while doing portraits, I tried couples photography, with a few friends also, and OH MY GOSH, I loved it.
I absolutely loooooooooooved to create and capture the emotions and connection between two people in love. I found it absolutely magical, so I decided to get into it more.
At that time, I also started having my first paid gigs!
YAAAAAS! I started having people I didn’t know contacting me for portraits, couple & family photos!
I even shot my first wedding at 200$ LOL!
I had never been to a wedding ever, and it was ugly.(for me, my clients were actually really satisfied with the result! But well, they actually got what they paid for I guess ahah!!)
I didn’t know HALF of what I know right now, I was still a beginner at that time. But I knew I loved it.
I literally could not stop talking or thinking about photography.
Fall 2016. I started school that fall, and the day after I already had enough. I was not only doing my homeworks during my classes anymore, I was skipping all the classes I could without getting kicked out. I even skipped a few tests, I really didn’t care at all anymore.
Yuuuuuuuuuupp, I was at that point lol!
The summer before I had learned how I could make a living from photography and that I didn’t have to go to school for that. I only had to be good hehe! And I knew I was!
So, after about a month into my semester, I had a burnout from school and quit.
Yup, I literally had a burnout. After quitting, I could not think about school for months without having anxiety. No joke. I told you I was not a school person ahah!!
I then started working full time at my pharmacy job.
But after working 9 to 5 there for a few months, I started getting bored. I’ve gotta say that for A WHOLE MONTH I was checking the dates of ALL THE PRODUCTS in the pharmacy. ALL OF THEM. Just checking to remove all the expired product in the shelves. Sounds fun, right?!
Anyways, I was working full time there only because I knew I needed to save a little money to start as a full-time photographer.
Feb 2017. So, in February, I quit my job. YAAAAAAAS, in February 2017, I made THE BIG JUMP!
In February 2017, I BECAME A FULL-TIME PHOTOGRAPHER!!!!
I was lucky, because I didn’t have that much money saved, I made the jump because I was sick of my job and that’s it ahah! It was kind of a last-minute decision. But I knew my boyfriend and my family were behind me to support and help me if needed. I seriously never could have made that big jump that early without them.
For a big year, I worked my butt off to start my business and make it work.
To this year, I still think that if you really want something as big as a company to work you need to put ALL YOUR ENERGY IN IT. It is soooo cool to have a company as a side job, but if you want it to fly off, you need to stop being afraid. The “right” moment will never come, you need to create it yourself.
If you’re passionate and work hard, there’s NO REASON why it would not work!
And heyyy IT IS working !
2 years later,
I am a wedding photographer! 😉
Anyway guys, you’ve got one thing to remember and get out of all this: to follow your heart. If you’re in a place in your life where you’re not happy, find the “why” and get out of it. Life is short, so we need to live it well! It can take a lot of time to find your true calling, but you’ll know when you find it. And when you do, do everything in your power to do it everyday of your life.
It is SO WORTH IT!
It is SO AMAZING, to have a job that DOES NOT feel like a job.
Every time I’m off to shoot, my heart is happy. Some days I cannot even BELIEVE that it is my job. And there’s too many people in the world that does not feel that way about their jobs and It seriously makes me so sad.
Nowadays, the possibilities are ENDLESS! You can do WHATEVER you want to do! So, try everything there is to try until you find that one thing that makes you want to learn more and more every day. That one thing that hunts your dream, but in a good way. That one thing that when you talk about it, your eyes sparkles and everyone around knows you’re doing the right thing. Find that thing and
YES, GO AFTER IT!!!
I’m telling you, it’s gonna be the best decision of your life.
Because quitting school to follow my photography journey, WAS the best decision of my life.
AND NOW GUYS, I’M OFF TO BECOME AN ELOPEMENT PHOTOGRAPHER!
So see ya! 😉
Because no, I am not at all where I want I want to be yet. And it’s still so exciting! My journey is far from over!
And pssstt, don’t forget to leave a comment below if you liked it!
Violaine is an adventurous wedding and elopement photographer based in Montreal, Canada but she travels worldwide. She loves the intimate, authentic and raw moments that happen each second between two people in love. She believes in the craziness of every couples and that laugh is the best medicine. She’s not afraid of freezing in the cold or getting completely wet under rain, as long as her images reflects her clients personality.
“It’s all about YOUR story. Whoever you are, wherever you go.”