This ones for all the OG clients of Whitney Beth Photography. The ones who I practiced on and muddled my way out of auto and into manual. The ones who agreed to model for me and trust me with important milestones (looking at you, all my Newberg High grads.)
I mean it. We all start somewhere, and you just happened to be where I started. Looking at the photos I produce now and my steady stream of clients and comparing them to baby Whitney, circa 2007/8 with my very first DSLR and all the senior and family pictures I took of my friends and family and you'd think I was pulling your leg that they were from the same girl. You trusted me to capture your family, and what's even more impressive, you were happy with the results! I can remember each photoshoot and being so proud of the final outcome. Each photoshoot was awarded the title of "new favorite." Now I look back and cringe and critique. And this has NOTHING to do with you! I'm embarrassed of the early work I produced, but it's only natural. It's part of being human and learning and growing.
So, thank you.
Thank you for allowing me to try out different poses and prompts.
Thank you for suffering through my selective color edits and sepia toned images until I found my style.
Thank you for letting me learn.
Thank you for allowing me to grow.
Thank you for being my stepping stone, and for all the positive feedback that fed my soul and inspired me to keep pursuing.
Thank you for paying me! (I remember the first handful of shoots that I got compensated for - $50, and I was so proud of that $50. It was then that I thought I could really make this a reality.)
So while I've been learning and honing my craft over the last decade or so, finding out who I am as an artist, what speaks to me, what do I enjoy photographing, I owe it all to my first clients. My poor, poor little guinea pigs. They believed in me then and some have even stuck around for the good stuff now.
Thanks for believing in this girl from Newberg with a brand new D40 and a camera bag full of accessories she wasn't quite sure what to do with. I owe all I am to you guys and that teenager who thought I could actually do this.
You're the real MVP.
Thank you <3