Meet Julianne Green of Julianne Green Photography
Today we’d like to introduce you to Julianne Green.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Julianne. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I believe that for a lot of creative people, myself included, there is a constant struggle to do something that is true to your inner artist; something tangible, and the desire to survive. So after undergrad at Northern Illinois University, where I graduated with a degree in Organizational Communications and a minor in Fine Arts, I pursued the path most likely to pay the bills. So naturally, I did the least creative thing you could imagine and went into the financial services industry. I stayed in financial services until about 2013, when I had my twin girls and decided to leave the traditional workforce.
Photography had been close to my heart for as long as I can remember. I had a great professor at the school who taught me the basics of light and, while never professionally before Julianne Green Photography, I had a strong desire express myself through images at a young age. So it was a natural progression when I thought about what I would want to do in this next phase.
With the support of my husband, Mark, and the bit of time that staying home allowed, I started to build Julianne Green Photography. Which was originally called Three Little Birds Photography, because 1) we love Bob Marley, but more importantly 2) Mark didn’t know many nursery rhymes and would sing “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” to rock the girls to sleep… He and the girls are my three little birds! I later realized that people knew “Me”, and “I” was the brand; leading to the decision to change the name and incorporate the birds into my logo.
I started doing sessions for free… taking pictures at friends parties; whether they wanted me to or not. I would play around with editing. It’s important to mention that in undergrad I learned on an ancient canon on film (T-MAX 400) and developed in the darkroom (old school), so I had to teach myself to use a digital camera and programs such as Lightroom and photoshop… doing everything based on what I believe to be aesthetically attractive and a lot of trial and error.
Thankfully people were receptive. I started putting out feelers to families willing to pay bottom dollar for a little more experience in order to build my portfolio. With the support of a lot of friends, my dream became a reality… they believed in me, encouraged me, and here I am… Now the owner of Julianne Green Photography, with an adorable little studio in Downtown Downers Grove, Illinois that I split with one other super talented photographer, Summer Brader. I am so unbelievably lucky.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
The business took off pretty quickly. I didn’t approach it from a full-time perspective initially… I eased my way in, which I believe made it seem less daunting at first… I didn’t pressure myself to do too much too fast. It quickly became clear that this was more than a side hustle.
However, that isn’t not to say there were not struggles. Being an entrepreneur, a mom, a wife, a friend and a new business owner were not without its problems. There is a constant feeling of letting someone or something down… i.e., I should spend more time with the kids or hubby… but I could be marketing or editing, and “oh shoot I forgot to call my friend back… 5 weeks ago”.
It took a while to realize that if I stay true to myself, am a straightforward business person (that gives honest expectations and deadlines), and a dedicated member of my family; it would all fall into place. Mark recognizes when I need help and is willing to let me pursue my dreams even though I mostly work weekends and a lot of weekday evenings. The job may take an hour to shoot, but the work that goes into 1 session hardly began at the actual appointment and doesn’t end until fully-edited photos are in the client’s hands and they are happy with their gallery, its a huge time commitment.
It’s a constant balancing act… sometimes I am hugely successful at it, other times not so much.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Julianne Green Photography – what should we know?
Plainly speaking, I am a storytelling photographer… lifestyle photographer. But when I say “lifestyle” I don’t mean lifestyle, as in documentary, day in the life of style that one might be thinking… I mean I want to tell your story.
I can be found working with couples/weddings/newborns/family sessions… but most importantly I want to work with people over and over again, telling the various parts of their story. I want to tell the love that you and your fiancé share, and then I will capture the journey you take when you walk down that aisle.
You will forever have the image of your husband who puts his hand on your expecting belly and the look of adoration he has in his eyes. You will never forget the tears that welled in both of your eyes when you look at your baby for one of the first times.
You will hear those giggles again, when you look a the images we captured from the smash cake at their first birthday session. I want to tell your story through my lens. What better way to serve my clients?
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Oh geez, there are so many.
There was a big, I should have listened to my mom moment. She always told me I should do something with my artistic creative side, and I always said no, it will ruin the passion once it becomes a job. Well, I was dead wrong… starting this company has only increased my desire to create. So Mom, if you are reading this… thanks for always pushing me to pursue my talents… I did it.
My dad shares my interest in photography and cameras… so having him to bounce ideas off of has been wonderful, he has even second shot with me, which was a lot of fun!
And of course, I couldn’t have done any of this without Mark and the girls. They have been my inspiration (I chase them around with a camera and make them a model for me, a lot), my advocates, my cheerleaders, and my supporters, both emotionally and financially.