We had the good fortune of connecting with Emily Behnke and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Emily, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
My work and life balance has significantly changed over the past few years. As I navigate through life and choose which paths to walk; I listen very closely to the universe. Like many entrepreneurs, as I started exploring my artistic abilities and hobbies as a source of income, I was also working a full time job. Well, full transparency, I was working a full time job, a part time job, and trying to figure out how to take on clients + create art in my own “free” time. Which, as you can image, was very limited. Although I am a creative in every sense of the word; I eat, sleep, and breathe art + creation. All of this running around and working left no time for valuable relationships in my life, long walks with my dog, or anything of the other things I used to have time to enjoy. I’ve got one heck of a work ethic but the “balance” was missing. As most of us had one heck of a last year, I think it is safe to say it taught us all a lot. Most importantly it gave us time to learn more about ourselves. Having this time where I was forced to slow down; stop and smell the roses. I realized, I really liked those roses. We need to constantly be evolving. Everyday we learn new things and everyday we get to make decisions to better our lives. Over time, I’ve learned that working yourself silly is not fulfilling at all. Making time for things in life that fill you up is what is going to keep you inspired and moving forward. Putting a structure in place to help you stay on task and get things done is a great way to insure that you can save time for those other important aspects of your life. Say organized. Stay focused. Give yourself a break. You got this!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’ve been a creative my whole life. Both of my parents are artists so I’ve always said “It’s in my blood”. I started with drawing and painting and I honestly wasn’t half bad. As I got a little older I got into design and, started turning my drawings and paintings into more functional things; like posters, and experimenting with different printing techniques. I did this all through college and even into the start of my career. With a degree in Graphic Design and Illustration, I started getting into digital marketing. I created ads, posters, logos, product designs, branding and more. Along the way I realized there was a demand for product photography so I picked up a camera and started experimenting. Thats where it all began. I soon found a love for this digital medium. Modern photography offered me all of the power to control and manipulate that I’m used to with working in design, but also has an amazing element of surprise. Getting to try different camera bodies and lenses really helped to open my eyes that all the art had to offer. Have there been bumps along the way? Of course! But you learn from your mistakes and wake up every day striving to do your best! I’m not sure if every photographer feels this way but, I seriously have the best clients ever and I feel so blessed to get to work with such amazing people. Getting to photograph weddings and elopements is so special. The moments captured throughout that day with be cherished for a lifetime and I am so honored to be entrusted by my clients to capture such a big moment. I am also grateful for all of the local brands that I get to work with. The relationships I’ve as we mesh products with content creation is always such a fun and artistic process. Working with small local brands is a passion of mine and it is always such a rewarding experience. All in all, working with passionate people to creating amazing imagery while capturing AND making memories is my dream job, and I am so thankful for the community’s support.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Denver is such a fun city, full of life! I think my favorite place to visit would have to be Red Rocks Amphitheater. If you are lucky enough to experience live music at this venue it is nothing short of magical. But it also makes for a great day trip to walk around and hike some trails. Another favorite place to visit is the RiNo Art District. Located in downtown Denver. There are a ton of very unique resturants and the streets are covered in the most amazing street art. It really shows off the personality of the city, in my opinion. It’s a great place to visit if you are in Denver! South Broadway is also a great place to wander around. There are tons of cool shops and restaurants. It is a great way to experience the city. Boulder is a picturesque day trip full of beautiful views and hiking. Food also has a special home in Denver. My personal favorite would have to be Cherry Hills Sushi Co. They are a small chain specializing in sashimi and hand rolls. And oh my, everything is so delicious! Eating at one of their restaurants is a great experience in itself. Other than that, what I love most about the food around Denver is all of the culture. You can find amazing Thai, Indian, Ethiopian, Japanese, Italian, endless unique food trucks, and the list goes on. There is always a new place to try!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I am so grateful for all of the wonderful people in my life. The support system I have is amazing and I can honestly say that I wouldn’t be where I am today without all of my friends and family. The community of artists I’ve been able to surround myself with in Denver has been so special. Working with Grassroots California ( @grassrootscalifornia ) was a very special experience; getting to network with many artists and art lovers alike. I would like to especially shout out my significant other and best friend, Keegan Fitzgerald. He is an amazing local glass artist ( @redtailglass ) and has always been there to support my dreams and push me to follow my heart.
MadZinnia, Matison Card; The Terrarium Shop, Grassroots California, Ellie Paisley, Whitney Holbourn