Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in photography but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Robert Bomgardner, owner of 38West Studio and Bomgardner & Co., Inc., located in Manhattan, NY, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I am a commercial photographer with a private studio in Manhattan specializing in fashion, still life, and portraits. My clients are mainly fashion corporations and their subsidiaries.
Tell us about yourself
I began my life as a photographer in my early thirties, and I am mostly self-taught. It is never too late to begin, and I am thankful every day for the opportunity to do this for a living! It is not lost on me that I could be doing something mundane or unfulfilling every day.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is to still be in business in NYC! The odds of staying in business in the past two to three years, especially with a private studio, are not very encouraging. I believe I am still in business because I am loyal to my clients, considerate of their needs, and go the extra mile for them. I've had a lot of the same clients for many years, and I believe it is not only because of my work but for my work and business ethic.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
I love working for myself, but it comes with the responsibility of paying your people and vendors on time! You want to be paid on time and well for your work, and they do, too. They work just as hard (or harder) than you and deserve this respect. Also, teach them. This cannot be underestimated.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Work hard, and do not be afraid to do the grunt work. Treat the people you work with or who work for you as you would like to be treated. Pay your people and vendors on time.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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