Supporting women owned small businesses is a core value of AGS Photo Art. I would not be where I am without women who chose to mentor me, women who chose to support me, and women who encouraged me. Because I had this incredible support system growing up, I was able to pursue photography full time. Like others before me, I am a woman supporting women.
It wasn’t always easy. I remember going to college and working three other jobs to pay for my tuition. Because I was working so much, I sometimes missed class for work. I had to make decisions on what to prioritize; since I needed to pay for school, sometimes that meant I took a necessary additional shift. I remember that when I graduated from the Fine Art and Film program, I hosted a graduation dinner for other students and invited my professors as well. I poured all my attention and energy into planning and hosting this event; we had so much to celebrate! We were graduates embarking on a brave new world.
Right after the elaborate dinner, I had a conversation with a professor I admired. During our conversation, he leaned in and lowered his voice as if he was letting me in on a secret, “You know, there were times I thought you would amount to nothing. And I’m still not sure.”
His words haunt me to this day. I thought about how I gave a thousand percent of myself in order to pay for my own tuition, and then how he basically spat on my effort. I think about how many others he has told that to, how many spirits he has crushed with his words. And I, one of the few of my graduating class that continues to work in the photography industry, refuse to let it stop me. One man’s opinion will not define who I am or what I do today.
Instead, I will cling to the community of women who have similar stories. I will support those that have been told they would never be enough. And I will mentor other photographers, just like others have mentored me. We cannot do this alone, but we can rely on each other, and together, we can all be something great.
Here are some practical ways to support other women businesses that I will practice (and hope you do too!):
Is there someone whose work you love? Or someone that inspires you? Be sure to let them know! Sometimes the smallest gesture or DM saying how much you admire other’s talent goes a long way.
Are you someone that has been in your field for a while and can mentor others? Whether it’s photography, owning a small business, or simply offering words of encouragement can help others who are just starting out begin their path to success.
Share their work
It takes less than ten seconds to repost someone’s work to your story! Plus featuring other’s work on your story disappears after twenty four hours so it is low risk. This can make someone’s day!
In summary, AGS Photo Art is a woman supporting women. Join this movement, since there are so many ways to show your support. To work with Amanda, click here.