For the past few months I have been putting off sharing the incredible experience I had at the Creative at Heart Conference Round 3 in Charleston, South Carolina. You see, it’s not because I haven’t wanted to share this experience but because it had such a profound impact on me and my business. I knew that when the time came for me to share my thoughts on the conference, I wanted my words to convey everything I felt while I was surrounded by so many talented and creative people.
If you haven’t heard of the Creative at Heart Conference before, well, let me start by saying that it is a conference catered to creative business owners and entrepreneurs. Whether you are thinking of starting your own business or are working in the creative industry, this conference is the one for you! There are so many incredible speakers that will change the way you think about your business and that highlight some of the challenges they have faced while working in the creative industry. However, they also share the experiences that have lead to their businesses growing and the reason why they do what they do. There is also a long list of panelists with so much experience working in different areas of the creative industry, from photographers, to calligraphers, painters, designers, and so much more. These panelists share their knowledge in break-off sessions where you are open to ask questions and share your fears and concerns stemming from running your personal business.
So you can see how having such a wealth of knowledge at your disposal, for two full days, can really leave you feeling emotionally overwhelmed and at the same time at ease. The reason I felt emotionally overwhelmed was probably because I went to this conference where I knew only a few people in the room and was surrounded by so many well known faces in the photography industry. However, I had not expected to find that almost everyone of these business owners or enthusiasts had at one time or another felt the same way about running a business as I had. I had never thought about the fact that at one time or another, these creatives were also starting their own businesses and facing the same doubt, challenges, and making similar missteps. We always see the incredible work created by these talented individuals on our Instagram feeds, Facebook, or on their websites. Yet, we never stop to think about the person behind the business or the fact that they too were/are attending school full-time or working a corporate job to make their passion a reality.
When I arrived at the Creative at Heart Conference, I had been feeling a certain amount of uncertainty for my future as a wedding photographer but walked away knowing exactly where I wanted to take my business. At the start of my photography career, I worked exclusively with families and children because it was an area I had always loved. Then, I fell in love with the beauty of wedding photography and started to attend wedding workshops and take courses to learn everything I could about photographing weddings. However, I knew in my heart, that there was no way I was going to leave a corporate job I loved to pursue wedding photography full-time. So, I had a decision to make and I chose to pursue my passion and focus on making family memories more than just photographs. With what I learned at the Creative at Heart Conference, I knew that I wanted to make my clients have an incredible photography experience. It was at this conference that the idea for the Dilia Cohen Photography experience was born. Through our discussion with the Creative at Heart panelists, I discovered that there was a way for me to hone in on this passion for photography and making photographs, future family heirlooms.
The Creative at Heart Conference changed the way I do business and the way I pursue my passion. I am so incredibly grateful for the experience I gained and the amazing friendships forged while spending a few beautiful days in Charleston. In the end, the Creative at Heart Conference taught me one great lesson, that we are not alone. Owning a business can feel lonely at times, regardless of your industry. But it certainly doesn’t have to be when there are so many communities out there with individuals sharing so many of the same experiences.
The following photos contributed to
Alicia Lacey Photography, Annmarie Swift, and We are the Mitchells.
If you are interested in attending a Creative a Heart Conference, visit official
website for more information and to register.