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Conversations with Michayla Slone

Today we’d like to introduce you to Michayla Slone.

Hi Michayla, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I went to college at UMSL, earning my degree in Communications. I truly didn’t know what I wanted to do at the time, but I was hoping I would figure it out along the way. During my time at UMSL, I really enjoyed a lot of my classes and could see myself running my own business. However, I graduated and ended up accepting an office job. That job was not suited for me, and I had a really hard time going into work every day. I felt like I didn’t really have a true purpose. It was never a long-term vision to be in that job.

On the side, I started exploring photography as a hobby. I quickly found how much I loved it, and close friends and family members would ask me to take their photos. It took me a while of testing things out to see what I truly loved, and I realized that I wanted to focus on weddings. I started working non-stop while still at my other job to build a brand for wedding photography, and to my surprise, I started booking weddings for the following year. I quit my day job a few months later and have been photographing the most amazing couples ever since.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It definitely was not a smooth road. I was definitely a bit naive going everything. I knew that I was capable of running a business, but I don’t think I was quite equipped to do so right at the beginning. I worked so hard on everything for so long that I exhausted myself pretty quickly, and the fun and love if it started to dwindle. Being a photographer is hard work, but even more so, it can be extremely stressful – not just mentally but physically. I faced quite a few health problems during my second year, which caused my business to stall. I didn’t have the time or energy to devote to it like, I had in the past. When your job is something like photography, it. Can be difficult because your livelihood depends on booking. When you don’t have the energy to put into booking new clients, it can definitely take a toll on your business financially. I am so grateful; I was able to figure out my health with a team of amazing doctors, but it was definitely difficult navigating through that at the time.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
Although I started out photographing families, I quickly fell in love with wedding photography. When I was younger, I always had such an infatuation with weddings, and I knew I wanted to do something that would let me be around them all the time. I never considered photography as a young child, but now I can’t imagine doing anything else. I absolutely love capturing couples and their stories. I think that photography is so important in so many ways, but especially in preserving those big milestones in life.

I think something that sets me apart is that I have never viewed this as just my “job”. I am a very empathetic person, and it’s so easy for me to feel my emotions. On wedding days, I tap into that, imagining that I have known my couples and their families and friends for my whole life. It allows me to anticipate small and intimate moments so that they are not missed in your photographs. The big, fun poses will always be great to look at, and I love those too, but I think that at the end of the day, you’re not going to remember the small moments that happened in a split second. Those are harder to tap into after a whirlwind of a day, so my biggest goal is to give you a tangible way to go back to those bits of your day when you need a little help remembering it.


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Michayla Slone

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