We had the good fortune of connecting with Heather Seybold-Lanz and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Heather, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I’ve worked for a lot of companies in different positions and I always knew I would be a business owner. For me, I liked the idea of forging my own path, how ever big I wanted it to be I can make it, and I loved the idea of taking charge of my own schedule and working with people that I liked and being my own boss.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Art is in my DNA, I have a lot of really talented artists in my family and it’s always been something that I more enjoyed than actually thought of making money from. I always laugh when mentioning to people how I got started in wedding photography because it was completely accidental. I spent several years as an Insurance Agent, and if you ever spent any time with me you’d see that sales and a competitive office setting are not my forte. I was stressed out and very unhappy in life and spend many months thinking of what else I could do.

I spent many months working 2 full-time jobs while I transitioned. I even had to come back to the office after my first wedding season had ended because I didn’t have enough money saved to pull us through the colder seasons when there was too many openings in my schedule. It was hard but we kept our eyes on the prize and after many many adjustments and much time we started pulling in a steady income. I talk to people all the time with a dream. They have this idea to do X but they don’t know where to start. I say work both until you don’t have to anymore, if it takes 2 years, you’d be somewhere in 2 years anyway so you might as well get started and get closer to doing what you want to.

If you don’t have challenges along the way then you may not be hitting your highest potential. The challenges are what you look for because that’s where you’ll find the biggest payoffs when you overcome them. My biggest challenge was charging my clients for my time and my art. I had to learn that my work was valuable and that meant me learning that my time was valuable and my art was valuable which enabled me to support my family easier. This seems simple but I had a hard time thinking that people would pay for something that came so easy to me and that I enjoyed doing so much. I spent the first year with hardly any profit and probably more in hotel and gas costs than I was putting in my bank account. Part of this was just being new and giving away my work for more opportunities, but my biggest problem was that I was charging what I would have paid for a photographer, and it wasn’t sustainable. I spent months raising my brand into a category that I felt was “Valuable” so that I could charge more. My website became more user-friendly, I created more content for my clients to better prepare for their sessions with things like questionnaires and a bridal guides. I brought my company to a level where I was able to charge for luxury rates and now get top dollar for my work.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love Golden. I’d have them stay at the Table Mountain Inn for half the trip and the Golden Hotel for the remainder as both are in the heart of downtown and both are a very different/fun experience. We would eat at Woody’s for some amazing pizza and have dinner at the Buffalo Rose for the atmosphere and a show. We would spend mornings at Clear Creek for sunrise/tubing and sunsets at Lookout Mountain over-looking the city. We really love Golden and are proud to base our business here.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My family has been the biggest influence on me and so I’d love to recognize them for the numerous seeds they planted in every part of my success. There are so many to mention and most that don’t even know how special they are to me. My mom was probably the biggest driving influence growing up, and someone I think about every day. She was a strong woman that taught me to go after what I wanted in life and to never give up, she always taught me hard work can lead to where ever you push it if you’re persistent enough. My children and husband are also a huge source of support and make every day so special and beautiful. I feel really blessed to have the people that I have in my life.

Website: www.lanzphotography.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/heather_lanz77/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/PhotographicSouls

Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/lanz-photography-golden-2

Other: https://vimeo.com/user99494585

Image Credits

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