So I went to the internet, and looked at some of the pictures on Michaela Wickman's website.
My husband and boys
Hi! Michaela, Tell me a bit about your family. How many children do you have, and how old are they?
I have two kids. My son Lincoln is 2 1/2, and my daughter Sawyer just turned one.
Wow, two little ones so close in age must keep you really busy. Why did you choose to work from home rather than find a job elsewhere?
It’s a give and take. I enjoy staying home with my kids, but enjoy working as well. I wanted to work part-time, and finding a really amazing part-time job that also covers the cost of day care for two children is hard to come by.
It sounds like you found a good balance with your photography business. What is the most challenging aspect of working from home while raising children?
Time management! I try to get most of my work done while they are napping, but how long of a nap they will take is always a bit unpredictable. If I don’t get everything on my ‘to-do’ list done, I find myself staying up late in the evenings trying to finish.
Oh yes, I can relate to that. I except I'm the opposite and I get up early in the morning to catch up on my work. What challenges do working from home present to your marriage, and how do you compensate?
As I mentioned above, the time management of working from home has been my biggest challenge. I don’t have set office hours and find myself constantly doing some sort of work related task in the evenings when the kids have gone to bed. My husband and I make plans to hang out when we are both home. I stop what I’m doing at a certain time. I try to keep my work Mon-Fri and dedicate weekends to family. I often have sessions on the weekends, but none of the editing gets done until the week.
I struggle with the same thing sometime. You want to spend time with your family, but when you've got a pile of work in front of you, sometimes it's so hard to know when to draw the line and stop working. If you could start all over again, what would you do differently? What would you do the same?
I think I would have set up my own office area sooner. For a long time I’d use our dining room table as my ‘work’ area. No wonder I felt like I could hardly get things done! Several months ago I set up a working space in our basement. I feel very productive now. It helps having photos I love surrounding the desk space, a dry erase board with my ‘to-do’s’ on it, and all of my files and folders right next to me in my ‘own’ space.
Now I'm jealous. I've been writing for three and a half years, and I still work at our kitchen table. Enjoy that office space, Michaela! What keeps you home instead of having an outside career? Is it worth it?
It is SO worth it! I love what I do and am passionate about it. My ‘job’ never feels like work to me.
If someone is interested in getting started in home-based photography, what are the first two things you recommend they do?
There are so many amazing and FREE online resources for those interested in honing their photography skills. Just Google ‘photography forums’ and a bunch will pop up. There are some talented photographers who willingly dedicate their time and talent on these forums to help those just starting out. The book ‘Understanding Exposure’ by Bryan Peterson is a must read.
Thanks so much for interviewing with us today, Michaela. Michaela will be back again on Wednesday with some photography business basics. To see more of Michaela's photographs or learn more Michaela Wickman Photography and her photography packages, check out her website.
Giveaway: For our giveaway this week, Michaela and I teamed up to purchase a gift card to Canvas on Demand. This is an online photography site that puts a digital picture on a canvas backing, making your picture look like an oil painting. So if you want a new twist for that latest family photo before you hang it on the wall, this gift card might be perfect for you. To enter, head on over to Michaela Wickman Photography's facebook page and click 'like' (which you'll want to do so you can see all the great pictures she's constantly posting on there). Then come back here and leave a comment with your email address letting me know you liked Michaela's page. The giveaway will end on Saturday, February 25, at midnight.
Photo credits: All photographs taken by Michaela Wickman and used with permission. The copy of the canvas photograph came from Canvas on Demand and is used in under the "fair use" guidelines.