Over the weekend a dream of mine for over a year finally came true – The Rad Photographers Retreat. A four day retreat for woman who are ready to build their photography business while digging into their fears and dreams. The first retreat of it’s kind in Wisconsin, started with 6 amazing woman in a beautifully restored barn. Together we cried, learned, vented and grew and woman in photography.
The retreat started with us jumping right into our dreams and fears with the amazing Kala. It was great seeing that even though we are all in different parts in our lives and careers we have the same fears. Life rather it be personal or business they have colliding goals and dreams. We dived right into what those were, and how we were able to accomplish them. This is where I saw these woman open up and becoming more than woman they just met – to friends. The second day after even more goal setting the amazing Laura Zastrow came to teach us how to find dreamy window light. She set up some amazing location inside the barn – since it was a chilly windy day outside with no sun. As myself as the model it was crazy to be on the other side, and remind myself what my clients go through. The ladies learned a great deal from Laura, and they all agreed that she was where they learned the most.
The last full day was filled with pampering and honing in on what our goals are and the steps we need to take to get there. It was great seeing the woman dream and set those goals. This was the perfect time for With Grace and Gold to come in and help them see where their brand and website were – and how they can get them to be where they want them to be. These girls went downstairs to go over their sites with WGG – and when they returned they were so happy to for the affirmations they got, and tips on how to improve. The last learning experience was a night filled with inspirational words from Jake Anderson about publishing and client experience. Even though Laura touched on this with how to build the experience, Jake talked about how to help your clients get the most out of their sessions. To ensure that your clients are your ideal clients, and how to ready your clients for their amazing session with you.
In between all this learning at the retreat – the ladies also woke up to amazing breakfast provided by Yield Bakehouse and coffee from Cafe Social. Pampered with chair massages by Alisha – mini massages way too short – hehe. They got their hair and make up professionally done by Shellady & Tammy – ready to get their new headshots shot by Me. And since it was such a beautiful day we went outside and had some fun photographing everyone. Each dinner was cooked and served by a personal chef – Chef Eric was amazing. The dinners were the perfect ending to each day – having someone cook and serve was a relaxing end. The final dinner was a relaxing meal styled by Elevate Events lit by candle light – over glasses of wine and amazing prizes won by all.
When the final morning came and we were all chatting, drinking coffee and relaxing on the couches – we all couldn’t believe it was all over. I drank coffee while the ladies packed up and one by one left. Each hug from the ladies I could feel how much they grew – I cannot wait to see what these amazing woman will accomplish. I found myself alone in the barn, no happy laughs coming from the upstairs, no one working at the barn table, I was alone. With a sense of contentment fills my soul, the fact that I accomplished something so big, I spilled so much of myself into, I started to cry. I cried with happiness, sadness, and a sense of growth. This retreat had my emotions all over the place, nerves sky high, and stuttering right on cue – I found myself realizing I LOVED teaching and helping woman grow more than I ever thought.
I couldn’t be more thankful for all those involved, for sticking by me through all the late nights, mini arguments, and planning. Thankful for all the help, advice and encouragement!
with love – christine