Today I’m launching my new brand and web design! It feels big, crazy, and worth celebrating. So, that’s why today, I’m going to tell you my business journey and a bit about why I felt like it was time to take this next step in my business.
I never expected to become a wedding photographer. Really, I had plans of becoming a children’s book illustrator, an art teacher, a gallery artist… photography wasn’t even on my radar. It was just my hobby within art. Wedding photography, though, has sent me on one heck of a journey over the last three years. One beautiful, crazy, challenging, rewarding journey.
When I graduated Ball State, I was the person who measured success with grades. I had a clear direction because I had projects and things to check off my list. But when I graduated, I couldn’t find that thing that felt like the perfect mix. Something that really utilized my skillset. All along, I was working towards an art career. So I would try thing after thing – custom framing, teaching, selling, showing, etc. and would juggle a couple of these things at once. But ultimately, I couldn’t find fulfillment.
The year we decided to start a family, we moved to a new town. I didn’t know anyone. So here’s post-grad Cassie, already getting burned out on long days alone in a studio, hopping between jobs because none of them are the right fit, whining about it. I needed a job if nothing but to socialize. Art wasn’t the dream career I’d imagined. I started waitressing. And I’m not going to lie, it kind of sucked telling people that. But I think they also understood where I was at. I felt like the terrible cliché of an art school flop. But I still think that job was one of the best things I did. It got me to here.
I was still juggling everything under my art umbrella I’d created – making, selling, showing, teaching – but the waitressing job taught me how much I valued people. It became like a second home for a while. It taught me customer service, multitasking, and most importantly – that I needed to figure my shit out. This wouldn’t be where I landed. I wasn’t going to let it.
Then, along came Patrick. I was a new stay at home mom, vowing whatever I put my mind to next would be *the* thing. And I was still lost. I had no real time or space to get my art supplies out. I just consistently was getting out my camera so I wouldn’t forget anything about him as a baby. And gradually, people started to notice and ask for pictures of their own kids.
I still didn’t know what I wanted to do. But taking pictures for people picked up. At a crossroads, an old friend from art school asked me, “Who’s job are you most jealous of?” My answer was Justin and I’s wedding photographer. Her life just seemed like a really cool mix of getting to travel, going to different events, meeting all kinds of people. And, she got to create all the time. Not only that, but the images she was creating were of things people would always want. Their best memories.
Then, I started reaching out to other photographers. I started watching YouTube all day between feedings and play. I taught myself how to shoot in manual, how to use a flash, how to become an LLC… all the things. I started my business. I did a lot of family photography and portraits in the beginning. A few months in, I invested in my first full-frame camera. The same day I hit purchase, another friend from art school asked if I could second shoot that weekend. That day changed my life. That experience showed me how creating images could *really* matter to someone. I got to experience the rush of getting a shot that someone would look at over a lifetime. I could see something real unfold and help someone remember it.
The rest of the year, I second shot and shadowed for anyone I could. I worked through naptime and late into the night. I pushed myself to keep learning, networking, and building everything myself. And for someone who felt lost, I found a home and a goal to work toward. I’ve been building the business to grow with my son from the beginning and was able to go full-time my second year.
Over the last three years, I’ve shot almost 50 weddings and countless portrait sessions. I’ve met so many people on this journey and don’t know how I could walk away. And that’s why I chose to rebrand and build a new website. I wanted to celebrate how far I’ve come with this small business of mine and mark the beginning of a new chapter. I have systems in place, experience, and direction. I’m not going anywhere but along as a creative 3rd wheel for even more couples, telling their story.
Cassie Dunmyer Photography is ironically a lot more than just me. It’s all of what I’ve learned and want to pass along to someone else. One of the best parts of my job is that I’ve seen so much play out on any given shoot or wedding day, I’m able to see around the corners for you. I’m able to prep people for the best photos of themselves and for the most fun on their wedding day.
I hope this place becomes a resource for advice as well as a place to celebrate love, commitment, and real memories. When I say it’s the moments that matter most – I’m not kidding. I feel so much satisfaction capturing something that could become a family heirloom. I love that it matters and I love serving people in this way. So, I’m unbelievably excited that you’re here on the journey, starting this new chapter with me. Welcome to my new Internet home. I’m glad you’re here.