truth | personal

sometimes it’s really hard working a full time job AND running a full-time photography business. you have to be partially insane to think it’s possible to do both things at once haha. and to a certain degree, i guess i am a little crazy haha. i overcommit myself, have a hard time saying no, and think i can get away with being an insomniac. but in its own twisted way, it ‘s been working.
the truth is… i’m scared. and whoa! i wasn’t even planning on saying that. i just sat down to write this post, not really sure what my intentions were behind it. but it’s real. i am scared. i’m scared of working part time at the preschool, or not at all, and not making it. i’m scared of not making enough for my car payments or other monthly bills. i’m scared of emergency money being needed, like $500+ for new tires. i’m scared of not being able to support myself. ever. i’m scared of never being able to get an apartment (seriously people, if ya need a roomie, i’m lookin’!). i’m scared of another change!
yes, i’m busy. sometimes too busy from working two jobs, but it’s me. i love knowing i have a consistent pay check. i love having the teacher role at school and the photographer role at home. i love seeing my kiddies every day and giving them hugs. i have grown to embrace this balance of teacher/photographer, but sometimes it is a little much. it’s hard being out of town all weekend for a wedding or a session and then being bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at school. it’s hard writing a blog post especially when i’m tired. and it’s really hard to plan meetings with a client during the week, when i don’t get off work until 5:45 every day. it definitely has its challenges.
last year i nearly wore myself out with 10 weddings of my own, second shooting 7 weddings, and starting a full time job. but thanks to God, He gave me the strength to get through it AND helped me pay off my student loans (whoop whoop!). this year, i decided to do things differently. if i have a wedding out of town, i try to take that monday off to rest and edit (so i don’t get behind). it’s been a lot easier to balance things this way. it’s hard, though, when i can’t get off work. but one day, it won’t be like this. one day, i’ll be able to support myself from ONE job. until then, i have peace from God that i am right where i need to be. maybe things will change soon? maybe they won’t? my weddings have almost doubled this year, on top of second shooting. is it gonna be hard? is it gonna take a lot of discipline and endurance? is it gonna take sacrifice? yes. yes. yes! but i know that God is with me through every step and will guide me throughout this journey. i will find my strength in Him.
maybe one day you’ll be reading a post from me announcing that i am officially a full time photographer. won’t it be nice?!?! gosh! i see everyone else announcing it, wondering when it will be my turn. but i’m at peace. i’ve always been a late bloomer, and i’m learning to be better at trusting God’s timing. right now, i know He needs me where i am and wants me to pay off my car. from there, who knows. but God has always had my back, so why should i even question it. i feel like, i’m getting closer to that point (of full time), but not quite yet. when it’s time, He’ll let me know. until then, i’ll stay right where He needs me.
when that day comes for me to finally announce that i’m full time, oh how amazing that day will be. i’ll know it took a lot of work. hard work. but that’s what’s gonna make it even better.


  • Your commitment to your passion is inspiring! We keep you in our prayers and are so excited for how busy you are, because it means that others see how fabulous you are!!

  • I love how openly you shared your heart in this post! It is SO HARD to balance both teaching and photography, and I honestly think I’ve learned personally that I can’t do both and do both really well. God is SO faithful and he has great plans for you! I’m excited for you as you continue to grow, friend!

  • I saw that you posted a personal blog post on Instagram the other day and was bummed I didn’t have the time to read it. Well with my awful memory I wasn’t sure if I would remember to look back later. With some kind of luck you posted your pose tips entry and I took a look! Then remembered this post, which touched me and the same fears I have as a photographer and battling being a more independent person. It is all tough and comes with great work, which I can see you are doing loads of! 🙂 but luckily you have faith on your side to keep you inspired to stick to your dreams! Thank you for sharing your thoughts Ashley!

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I’M  Ashley

a Richmond, Virginia WEDDING & PORTRAIT Photographer

I’m Virginia Ashley, but my friends just call me Ashley! I’m a wedding photographer based in Richmond, Virginia. Even though I live in RVA, I travel all over for photography, which is awesome because I LOVE to travel! I’ve been as far as California and have my passport burning a hole in my pocket!

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