Photographers Jae and Matt Springer make a full-time living in their creative business. They share their thoughts on growing a business and working together with a spouse.
ABI: What are the pros and cons of working together as a couple?
JS & MS: Probably the biggest pro that we have working together as a couple is the ability to use two sets of eyes in the creation of our art. Conceptually, it is a complete team effort from field to final product. We both love photography and sharing in the accomplishments and achievements that our work brings to us. We get to spend quality time together whether we are out shooting on location or inside working on the day to day operations of our business and we share a joint collaboration with our work flow. The only con or negative of working together might be that we love our work so much that we often find ourselves working a little bit too much.
ABI: What skills do you have that have contributed to your business success?
JS & MS: Matt having worked over twenty years as a computer network engineer is a huge asset as far as website creation, design and management. Jae has an extensive background in accounting and bookkeeping, which helps tremendously on the financial management side. On the artistic side, Matt has a BA degree in art history and has always had a lifelong interest in photography. Additionally, Jae has studied liberal arts and is a published poet. She also has spent time dabbling in oil painting as a hobby. Subsequently, we both bring business skills and artistic passions to the table. This combination has attributed to our business success.
ABI: You have turned your “Passion into Business.” How was this accomplished?
JS & MS: We accomplished this by taking something that we love, photography, and combined it with a working business plan. We used professional CPA consulting and conducted extensive research in the formulation of the business itself, which has provided us with a solid foundation.
Importantly, we wanted to keep it as a passion and not as an occupation. Therefore, everything that we do that is connected to our business has a constant running theme that includes: fun, excitement, adventure, beauty and the spirit of aloha. We consider ourselves extremely lucky in that our business is more like an extension of ourselves. We have taken things that we love: art, the island of Maui, beauty, poetry, photography, spending time together and combined it with our diverse skill sets to formulate a successful small business.
ABI: What benefits did you get from attending the ABI workshop?
JS & MS: In the ABI workshop, it was demonstrated through great examples how to visually communicate to your potential customers how your product actually looks in a real life setting via website product photos. In our case, we were able to use information obtained in the ABI workshop to create photos on our website that show our artwork in real world environments ( In-Situ), so that our potential customers now have a clear idea of what our artwork will bring to their own space as far as color, design and aesthetic appearance. This has proven to be an invaluable tool for our product pages.
ABI: Your theme is Bringing Beauty and Aloha to the World.” What does that mean to you?
JS & MS: Our photographs have a purpose: to share the emotion and magic found in the angles, spaces, reflections and light of Maui while revealing the stunning beauty and Aloha of this amazing island to the viewer of our art. It is our desire to present the island in an evocative way that arouses unexpected feelings and awakens the imagination to see nature’s poetry in a very visual form. Through our art, we hope to share the beauty of Maui and its Aloha spirit with the world.