Check out the profile on Vickie Gray Images features in Canvas Rebel Magazine. https://canvasrebel.com/meet-vickie-gray/
If you don’t have time to read the entire piece, here’s a summary:
I started my business in 2016 as an “encore” career, after taking up photography as a hobby in 2009. The timing was perfect and I wouldn’t have done anything differently.
I’m most proud of the fact that I started from ground zero with photography, with no mentors and few teachers.
What sets me apart from other photographers is my marketing background. I actually enjoy marketing and promoting my services, and view them as a vital part of my business, not as dreary tasks.
Other people probably don’t realize that being proficient with technology is an enormous part of being a professional photographer. It’s great to hear “oh, you have such a good eye for photography.” But technology, along with invoicing, scheduling, marketing, and digital file handling, is what makes the business a success.
In 2011 I took a workshop with an instructor who put down virtually every photo I took. I was demoralized and felt stupid. Though I was briefly tempted to put my camera away, I kept at it, taking more workshops (with different instructors) and practicing whenever possible. The support and encouragement of my friends, family, and colleagues are what gave me the confidence to continue.