With great change comes great opportunity.

Let the truth be told, as excited as I am to go to Hawaii (& just finally live with my Army man again, Marshall!), I am as equally scared to death. Leaving the comfort of all of my great friends who have not only been there for me for the past 6 years here in Charlotte, but also my clients.  My job as an Interior Designer, the degree that I worked so hard in school for (wish I could leave those loans behind...) and the field that lets me bring my eclectic design schemes to life.  My amazing clients who may have begun our projects with their daughter's rooms, but ideas that led into their whole house.  The relationships with those clients who genuinely care and in lieu of requesting a memo sample, walk in and immediately ask how my fiance in Afghanistan is doing, or how our wedding plans are coming along.  Waking up to emails from Kim, directing me to my next Creative Loafing assignment, but always responding back in reply after reply of in-depth conversation.  I am so excited for the blank slate that moving will give us, but am honestly clueless as to how to utilize it.  Thankfully, Marshall has so graciously assured me that he will help out financially until I am able to get my business up and running, but what if I want shoes?  And Sephora? Or there is a really amazing sale on RueLaLa and I have to buy that bikini at 11:01 A.M. before they are all GONE? I've been dying for more time to devote to my craft.  I feel like this is my chance.  My chance to do what I have been itching to do, to 100% focus on my photography, my brand, and rock. it out.  But here's the catch: I have no idea how to do that in a place where I know no one, and certainly no one knows me.

Thus you can imagine my excitement when my girl, Jasmine Star, announced that she was looking for students to join her on another internet broadcast for Creative Live.  I purchased videos of Jasmine's last session in which she shot a wedding, LIVE, on. the. internet.  (I know, right?) and have watched them a million times over.  This time she is discussing business, marketing, and branding and it couldn't have come at a better date.  I knew that no matter what, I had to join her....or at least give it valiant effort.  The woman knows her stuff and is so inspirational, I immediately signed up to tune in...but hoped I would be there in person.  (Trust me, everyone around me for the last WEEK has heard nothing but "Jasmine Star this" and "Jasmine Star that".  But, that's nothing new.)  I may have spent days pondering ideas, video composure, what I was going to wear, and re-worded my submission at least a hundred times, but my "biggest business challenge" was clear.  How am I supposed to start over in my business without literally starting over?  I know that photography is what I want to do, and I know that I can be wildly successful at it, I am just petrified of not knowing what the future will hold and how to get to my dreams because, believe it or not, I am a planner.  I plan to plan.  As much as I like to think that I'm a laid back free spirit, when it comes to the things I want I have to have it all lined up so that I know there is a set and clear goal.  Usually to the point of flaw (don't believe me?  Just some of our current wedding vendors...they can vouch!).

So, here it is, my submission to Creative Live with Jasmine Star.  If you know me, you know that I'm a talker.  Talkie talkie talkie, and I don't mind!  But THIS was a clear challenge, trying to get my point across in a MINUTE?  Oh dear lord.

Me:  "I know what I want to say, I just need to make it clear and precise."

Marshall:  "Yeah, just don't ramble.."

Marshall:  "because you tend to do that, you know..."

He's right.  But hey!  I just have a lot to say!  I also credit all of my typos to this.  My mind thinks faster than my little fingers can type, sometimes faster than my mouth.  I swear it.

And it just so happens my Birthday is that weekend.  No harm throwing a little guilt in there, right?  ;)

If don't win I will still tune in...on my birthday...and cry.   I have to say, I was trying SO HARD to be myself but it's not easy being on the other side of the camera!  If nothing else that was a great learning experience.  And my voice drives me crazy.  And why do I make such ridiculous faces?  Am I always this animated?  & WHERE DID ALL OF THOSE CHINS COME FROM?!?! Because they are pretty hilarious, here are the out takes, and clearly me being more Ashley, less Ashley Caught on Camera, which probably makes it a good thing these clips didn't make it into the final cut!

& a HUGE thanks to Lindsey, my co-worker, who so generously spent a supper away from her fiance to film this for me Uptown after work! (& thanks to her fiance, too, who took one for the team and substituted a home cooked meal for PB&J on a hotdog bun).  She was rather hesitant to manage video on the 7D but I think she did a pretty dern good job. James Cameron wasn't available so we had to improvise. No worries, she was compensated..in a lightrail ticket and drinks.