small business

rise + wander: a craft story | philadelphia branding photography

Though they’ve taken on different names over the years, Craft Stories have always been focused on the same principle: when your craft is your career, business is absolutely personal, and that’s a good thing.

Craft stories show your audience how the product or service you’re sharing is literally a labor of love, which helps them connect more meaningfully with you as a person, not just a faceless online identity or an end product. It’s like if you took a traditional branding session and leveled it up, inviting viewers in to see not just who you are, but how you actually create. Rise + Wander is a perfect example of this; you may not need to see behind the scenes to appreciate her art, but once you do pull that curtain back, it makes you understand the value of what she’s created on a much deeper level.

Craft Stories are for anyone who makes a living from what they love. Whether you’re an artist, designer, baker, or instructor, there’s an compelling human story in the work that you’re doing, and people want to know about it.

The structure of your Craft Story session is totally customizable, whether you need photos for your website & social media, or maybe you’d like to pitch to a magazine or blog to feature your business, and you want to supply them with images that will show your business at its best.

The possibilities for Craft Stories are basically endless, and all it takes to get the ball rolling is a conversation.

butcher's sew shop | philadelphia branding photography

I first came to know Butcher’s Sew Shop as a student in their knits 101 class, and I was immediately head over heels for pretty much everything they stand for: taking the fear out of making clothes, striking the perfect balance between patiently guiding students and giving them space to take risks, and cultivating a welcoming and inclusive space where anyone can enjoy creating in the supportive company of like-minded people. So when Mali asked me to shoot this class session, to put Butcher’s story to images so we could show everyone else just how incredible the learning experience is here, it felt a little bit like winning the lottery - so many things I care about came together all in this one project.

I couldn’t be more thrilled to have had the chance to help show the rest of our community what a treasure Butcher’s Sew Shop is to the Philly maker + small business scene. Being able to shoot for small businesses I personally support & believe in, exactly like Butcher, is the type of work I’d happily do forever.

agp collective / the alderman family

You guys, I don't even know where to start explaining how amazing Sarah Alderman is. If you're local to Southeast PA, you've probably already heard of her via her photography business or documentary project (which just released its trailer! go watch it!).

As photographers, we can sometimes be a little protective of our businesses in a way that holds us back from opening up and helping others working in the same sphere--it's understandable when you're working in a saturated market like this one. On the other hand, this field is also home to some really amazing human beings who open right up with a smile, offering support and encouragement the first time you meet. That's exactly the type of person Sarah is.

In addition to running a successful photography business (which boasts an entire TEAM of talented associates), she just launched a photobooth service, is creating an incredible documentary celebrating the unsung beauty of Coatesville, and she also happens to be a single mom to those lovely twin girls up there. She's teaching them firsthand what it looks like to be strong, ambitious and independent, but also that having your heart in the right place is just as important as working hard. Those girls are lucky to be growing up Alderman, and I myself feel pretty lucky to have crossed paths with Sarah. 

arden + james / the brant family

If you live near Philadelphia, you're probably already familiar with Bri Brant's lovely work. Bri is the designer & owner of Arden + James, maker of handmade bags and accessories that perfectly blend form, function and ethics. Bri recently won a Best of Philly award, and she's rightly had her beautiful bags featured several times over the past year by the likes of Urban Outfitters & local news outlets. While her designs have seen some well-deserved limelight of late, here I wanted to dig a little more into the personal stories behind her business, because her family really is so deeply woven into the fabric of Arden + James. Bri is at once a loving mother & wife, an immensely talented designer and a generally warm, thoughtful and kind human being. For all of us who struggle for balance between our personal and work lives, Bri is living proof that it is indeed possible.

girls can tell gift co

     

When Sara of Girls Can Tell messaged me out of the blue a few months ago to ask if I would photograph some of her new summer tea towels, I couldn't say yes fast enough - I've been been a big fan of GCT for a long while, and I was so honored to even be on her radar. I can personally attest to the fact that these towels are as versatile and functional as they are beautiful; perfect gifts to give your favorite people (or keep for yourself!).