The Art of Community: Local Marketing Strategies for Photographers – A Conversation with Karina Beck

As photographers and business owners, the struggle to stay motivated and push our creativity is real. It can feel like everything has already been done before – poses, props, locations, etc. But what if we could examine that struggle from a new lens? 

In today’s episode, I’m interviewing Karina Beck, a storytelling photographer from the Seattle area. Karina shares her advice for military spouses and others who’ve had to move around and restart their businesses, what intentional storytelling means to her, and how she’s been able to find inspiration by reframing creativity into problem-solving. 

We also chat about how she stays organized, especially as a mama of three kiddos, and how her dad gave her the best business advice ever. 

And if you want to hear more from Karina and how she’s problem-solving in her photography business, she’ll be teaching at our online 2023 Family Retreat! (Grab your spot now!)

What’s in this episode:

  • [06:29] As a military spouse, Karina shares her advice for those who have to restart their business in different locations
  • [15:38] Karina is an intentional storyteller and she shares what that means to her
  • [21:09] How Karina stays inspired to develop her skills as a photographer and how she has reframed creativity with problem-solving
  • [25:20] How she stays organized and manages her time as a photographer
  • [35:59] The best piece of business advice Karina has ever been given

Tune in to this episode for how to build community connections and market your business offline.

SUBSCRIBE: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher

Want to put an end to awkward moments in your photo sessions and create genuine connection? Download The Storyteller’s Toolkit today, featuring 200+ emotive photography prompts, so you’re never left wondering what to say.

Meet Karina 

Karina Beck is a storytelling photographer for the adventurous, and currently based in the greater Seattle area. She’s a bold, emotional, colorful leader and the executive editor for the BEC magazine. She was among the top 100 BEC Artists of the Year for 2022 and has been featured on Looks Like Film.

Connect with Karina

Visit Karina’s Website

Follow Karina on Instagram

Did this episode inspire you to build community connections and market your business offline? Check out this episode Unlocking The Power of a Creative Community That Benefits Everyone with Malia Battilana that offers you even more insight on finding alignment in your business!


[00:00:00] Karina Beck I realized recently that I am a problem solver. Like that’s where I shine. Probably problem solving is what I get really excited doing. And so I feel like when I am in a rut, I have to kind of create like a problem. If I’m in a rut, I have to identify, okay, what is the problem? What dynamic is not fulfilling me? And then I have to come up with a solution. And that’s kind of how I frame or find creativity is I feel like just kind of posing different situations as problems rather than how can I make this creative? 

[00:00:38] Lisa DiGeso Welcome to the Art and Soul Show where we dive into heart opening chats on photography, business life and that messy in between. I’m your host, Lisa DiGeso, a mom, a photographer and entrepreneur, and I’ll be sharing honest conversations and advice for photographers with insight on mindset, entrepreneurship and creativity. The goal of this podcast is for you to be able to gain insights and strategies that will get you real results. Because let’s face it, having a photography business can be lonely, but it doesn’t have to be. This is the place you can go when you need a boost of encouragement, a kick in the pants and inspiration to pick up your camera. This is the art and soul show. Hello, my beautiful friends. Welcome back to the show today. I’m super excited to dive into today’s conversation with Karina Beck. She’s a storytelling photographer for the adventurous, currently based in the greater Seattle area. She’s a bold, emotional, colorful leader and the executive editor for the BEC magazine. She was among the top 100 BEC Artists of the Year for 2022 and has been featured on Looks Like Film. Without further ado, here’s Karina. Welcome. 

[00:01:51] Karina Beck Hi, thank you for having me. 

[00:01:53] Lisa DiGeso So tell us who you are and what you’re passionate about. 

[00:01:57] Karina Beck Yes, so when I was thinking about who am I? I’m like, Oh, man, we have to go down this rabbit hole. I’ll start off with I am a wife. My husband and I got married when we were really young. I was 18 and he was 19. And we’ve been married for we just celebrated 11 years. We were crazy and we’re still here. And we have three kids, Thea, Caedmon, and Jude, and they are eight, six and four, and they are so high energy. I’m more laid back, I like know spontaneous. But I was like, you know, we have enough kids that maybe one of them will be shy. No, they’re daddy’s kids and we love adventuring. My husband’s in the military, so we have lived all over. We’ve been we’re from the Pacific Northwest here in Seattle, and we’ve lived in Oklahoma, Texas, Germany, North Carolina. And we are finally back in this area. So we’re hoping to stay here. And I’m super passionate just about really finding new. Like, I just I love having new experiences, seeing new places, trying new recipes, like I really this part of my life at least I’ve really been prioritizing just having all of these new experiences and sharing that with my kids and having them see so much of the world and so much of life. So I think that’s what I’m really passionate about, is just going on an adventure and finding something new. 

[00:03:37] Lisa DiGeso I love it. Just tapping into your explorer heart. Yes. 

[00:03:41] Karina Beck You know, the military that helps us, Uncle Sam helps us have that. And I think that’s really helped with just all the different moves, because every place has been so different. When we started out in Texas, here in El Paso, and that was tough going from Seattle to El Paso. Completely opposite and different. Once I feel like once I had that perspective change of, you know, there’s the good stuff and find all the new. I feel like that made this life so much more enjoyable because it doesn’t put us in a box. 

[00:04:15] Lisa DiGeso I love that. Now your business name, does that have to do with military? 

[00:04:20] Karina Beck So it has to do with my kids. And what’s really funny is so before photography I worked at DaVita. They are a kidney dialysis company and I worked in the corporate office and I did medical coding and billing authorizations. And when we were in El Paso, I worked in the facility and then I had kids in child care. And there is a lot of different elements. My husband was deployed where I stayed home and after a year or so I was like, I’m getting really restless. I need I need to do something. And so I was kind of thinking like, what business could I pursue? And I enjoyed photography, but I was like growing up in the Seattle area, I kind of romanticize what it meant to be as a photographer. Like the photographers that I knew were like, almost like celebrities here because my mom was here. Yeah, Yeah. And I was like, not me. Like, I’m just. No, that’s not me, and so I was like, maybe I’ll make candles. So light and armour, like light for the candle and then, like, armour I pictured, like, on the like, I don’t know, the case of the candle. And I was like that’s something I could bring everywhere. I could make candles. And then light was inspired by my daughter’s name, Thea  is the Greek goddess of light. And it’s also a form of Theodora which means gift from God. And that just seems really light and bright to me. And so it was like light, and then the candle, the flame, like all of that. And then my son Caedmon, it’s spelled C-A-E-D-M-O-N, and the C-A-E-D means battle. And I figured, okay, like a warrior, warriors have armor, and that’s where light and armour came from. 

[00:06:10] Lisa DiGeso Oh, I love that. That is so neat. 

[00:06:13] Karina Beck My youngest, Jude, he was born after the fact, Yeah. his name means to rejoice. And so I think that’s just a special sentiment to, like the cherry on top of the name. 

[00:06:26] Lisa DiGeso Yeah, I love that. It’s so neat. Yeah. So when you got started with photography, did you uproot your business for the military and have like you restarted multiple times as a military spouse? And if you have, what advice do you have for those that maybe have to restart their business in multiple locations? 

[00:06:49] Karina Beck Yes. So I feel like I have so much to say on this. So I started my business in Germany. I we actually had I took the kids and we visited family here in Washington. While I was here in Washington, I was just trying to learn my camera. I’m such a perfectionist. So I had like I was taking pictures of my kids, but it just wasn’t the quality that I was super happy with yet. And on Facebook, this free like, I don’t know, those webinars. I feel this is 2016 era. I feel like that was like a huge thing. And there was one in particular that kept popping up and I was like, okay, I’ll listen to this. Like I’ll sign up. And I don’t know what it was, it was for a wedding. It had nothing to do with what I was going to do. But whatever they had said, it kind of just sparked this notion of like, I need to take myself serious. If I want to do this, I need to be serious about it. And then it was like something changed. And I learned my camera and I started my business. When I got back to Germany, I was a German business. I had that state that we were in, in Germany. They had different rules than some of the other places with the different regulations. And anyways, so I did all the things to be legal and it was so I don’t want to say it was easy, but in Germany with different military bases. When you’re stateside, there’s so many people where some people are from that area. Some people already have their family and their friends. But in Germany, you’re all you have each other. That’s the support system. And so I felt like it was super easy to get your name out because we’re kind of in this little bubble anyway. And with starting out, I always joke that I could be a potato, but it didn’t matter because there’s a castle in the background. And so, you know, there everybody, and that was the other thing was in Germany, there was such a high urgency for photos because none of us were staying there forever. This was just temporary. We were there for two or three years. And so there were different things that people wanted to check off their like bucket list for Germany. And a German photography session was one of them. So I feel like that was really a blessing to start there. Yeah, a lot of learning opportunities as far as pricing and all sorts of different things, but I couldn’t have chosen a better place to get started. And then when we I did move from Germany to Bragg in North Carolina, and that was a big change because you go from somewhere where there’s this high urgency, everybody like you pretty much market on Facebook. There’s not you’re not marketing to the general population and working with military families. And you go back to North Carolina where it’s like. Fort Bragg is huge. North Carolina is big. It’s such a booming state for so many different kinds of photography with beautiful locations. And so I really had to figure out how to adjust to that. And I did take a year break. I had my youngest in there with some he had some medical complications that brought us back to the States early. So I took a year break because it was I just couldn’t sustain everything. But I had really that was so great because I got to really just embrace what I loved, which was documenting my kids and documenting the now and then in North Carolina, I had kind of already plugged in where I felt like my people were, and I was able to kind of take off so much quicker than I had anticipated. It was so exciting to kind of see that. I don’t know if it’s,  I feel weird saying like that success, but I felt it was. I was proud to see that I took this business where I knew nobody and I was able to build something that was pretty successful. And then moving to Washington, I was feel like I was able to kind of do that again. And I think it’s just being so aware of who you’re serving and knowing that you’re not marketing to everybody. Like I moved away from the military community. Like that’s not where my marketing efforts went to. If it aligned, if somebody is military and it aligned with what I was marketing, which was the adventurous, then like, great. But, you know, so just kind of figuring out like, you don’t have to stay. I feel like I realize I don’t have to stay in one lane, that I could figure out what I wanted and it could be whatever I wanted. And really one of my biggest advice that I would give anybody who’s moving is just figuring out who you’re serving and how you can be connected in that community. And people want to know you and they want to know who they’re working with. And so you can’t I feel like you just can’t come in and be like, Hey, book me. Here’s what I offer my this. Let me tell you this. Like, they want to know you and they want to know who they’re working with. And people want to work with who they know, like who their friends know and who their family knows. And so you have to kind of be vulnerable and put yourself out there and find a community, whether that’s church or hiking groups or different Facebook groups. I actually have a I have a note on my phone that I use for all the different Facebook groups that I can be a part of, like different community pages and other pages like and that I would want to market to. And I put when can I market, is it every Monday and Wednesday or is it every Friday? And can I make a post or do I have to comment on a thread? And I put all of that and I just kind of cycle through those too. And I feel like that helps take some of the thought out of it too, because then you can just kind of go through your list and then you can also be a part of that community. Now, aside from the marketing part, because when I was, I feel silly saying this, but I just feel like it’s that like human psychology aspect of like I would join mama groups and I would use them. I wanted to be a part, I want to work with moms and I want to work with families who like to adventure. And so I would ask like, what’s your favorite hiking spot? Where where do you go for food? Or, I don’t know, like different like do any restaurant tips. And people are curious they’re going to on over to your profile and they might see that you’re a photographer and they click over to your Instagram and they’re like, Wow I love your photos. Just being all the communities I want to work with and I know sometimes I think if actually I don’t want to slimy or mushy or  disingenuous but at the same time we are a business and this is work. My clients, I want to be friends with and I want to work with people that I can see myself enjoying life with. And I know it’s different for every business and every dynamic, but. 

[00:13:50] Lisa DiGeso Completely. 

[00:13:51] Karina Beck There’s a long answer for you. 

[00:13:53] Lisa DiGeso That’s so great, because I think it is so important, especially when you’re moving to a new place, is like it is scary to go out and meet new people. But you’ve given so many like ideas of like. 

[00:14:06] Karina Beck So many layers. 

[00:14:07] Lisa DiGeso Right? There’s so many layers. Like you don’t have to just pull over and say hi, like I’m Karina. And then send people my way. It’s like, you’re just kind of showing up in different ways. So people, your name just becomes recognizable. Yeah, and it’s just sort of a way just to be seen, be visible. 

[00:14:28] Karina Beck And going from Germany. I solely marketed on Facebook like that where everybody was they couldn’t you didn’t have a like everybody communicated to their family through Facebook like Facebook was the thing and when I went to North Carolina I realize that wasn’t the number one like people aren’t on Facebook and people are on Instagram. And so in Germany, I think I had an Instagram, but I didn’t use it. I had no idea what I was doing. Not that I do now. Maybe a little  bit more. And so in in North Carolina I had to figure out Instagram and how to put like, how to make that second nature instead of like I’m going to post on this day and oh, I will. Instead of making it so forced, I just kind of got into a routine and I feel like that helps so much now. Most of my clients come from Instagram. They come from hashtags and location tags, so it’s kind of figuring out like where you need to pivot and how can you adapt. You know, everything’s trial and error, so if something’s not working, what can you do next? 

[00:15:35] Lisa DiGeso I love that. That’s great advice. 

[00:15:36] Karina Beck Thank you. 

[00:15:38] Lisa DiGeso So you describe yourself as an intentional storyteller. So can you share what intentional storytelling is to you? 

[00:15:45] Karina Beck Yes. So I am such a words person. I love words. Words are hard, but I feel like in conversation, I’m like, okay, what are we thinking of? But when I’m writing, I really love figuring out exactly like how to articulate what I’m thinking and what I’m about. And I feel like I’m just trying to like who was I in the photography industry? And I felt like I teeter on this idea of I don’t want to feed this narrative like, life’s perfect. And everybody, when they’re on Instagram for the Instagram highlight, I feel like I’m showing these perfect families and these perfect, like majestic locations and everything’s been all perfect. And that kind of bugged me to an extent because we all know life isn’t perfect, it’s chaos. And I kind of had to wrestle with that. And I kind of came to the point where I was like, Okay, what’s so wrong with wanting this part of us at a session? And so that’s kind of where I was like, where intentional they’re hiring me because they’re being intentional with their time and with who they want to document, and they’re being intentional with their photos. And then I am being intentional with styling and location the time of day. And there doesn’t have to be anything wrong with that. But just kind of note like being aware of what everything means. And so that’s kind of where intentional storytelling came for me was just knowing that we are everything is so thoughtful. And then also spoiler alert for my course, but for the family retreat, the goal for me for intentional storytelling is providing an experience in a situation where our clients can be fully immersed and in the now. And that’s where intentional story like we’re not thinking about X, Y, or Z, we’re not checking things off a list for not this time to be with your family here in the now with your loved whoever you are booking your session with like. Be in the now. Yeah. And that’s what I hope to I guess curate. 

[00:18:11] Lisa DiGeso Now sort of embracing that, just being present with your family and just capturing that. I love that. 

[00:18:18] Karina Beck And however that looks for everybody, because sometimes that adventuring, hiking, bike movement and other times it’s just finding a spot on the beach and just sitting there and letting kids around around you and just seeing what happens. And so it doesn’t have to be something really big. It can be completely small. It can be in our house. I mean, it can be wherever our clients feel most comfortable. 

[00:18:47] Lisa DiGeso Yeah, I love it. What I do with my clients is I they they laugh because I take them to the weirdest locations. Like, I’ll just stop by the side of the road, and they’re like, I don’t know what you see here. I’m like, This is magic. It’s going to look like we’re in this enchanted forest and it’s literally parking on the side of the road. We’re getting out, we’re taking the shot and we’re getting back in. And it’s just it’s not fun. Like, just finding these, like, new locations. Like, I love that, too. It’s just like my little explorer heart.

[00:19:21] Karina Beck And I love how it comes alive with our vision, too. It’s like kind of making the ordinary beautiful. I love that. 

[00:19:26] Lisa DiGeso And I think I really I get so excited when it when my clients think it looks like nothing and you can make it look like incredible. Yeah, I think that’s my favorite part. 

[00:19:35] Karina Beck I feel like sometimes I’ll show them the back of the camera, like, look, look, this is you. And they’re like, that’s me? That’s us? And they’re like, What? Yeah, it’s so fabulous.  

[00:19:53] Lisa DiGeso Sometimes it’s so funny because I will go to location scouting and I’ll take just my camera and I cannot take a landscape to save my life. There is like, I don’t know, there’s something that happens when there’s a person in the photo, whether it be a family or just a child or maternity. But I cannot like my location, like my vacation photos are just like they’re… 

[00:20:17] Karina Beck I had to kind of like learn how to re… I remember when I got here, I don’t know. I looked on Pinterest and I looked I remember I went somewhere to look how to do a landscape photo again because I was taking pictures of Mt. Rainier. I don’t know all these insane locations that I got to explore again. And I look on my phone and I’m like, or my camera and I’m like okay, this doesn’t do it justice. What? Like I’m supposed to be a photographer? What’s going on here? No, it’s true. A landscape photographer that’s a talented niche. 

[00:20:52] Lisa DiGeso I look and food photography like blows my mind too because I love to cook, but I am not a food photographer. That is not my skill set. Right. I love it. So how do you stay inspired and motivated to continue pushing your creativity and developing your skills as a photographer or creative? 

[00:21:24] Karina Beck I don’t consider myself super creative like that. That was kind of a block I really had when I started because I like I’m much more black and white and logical and photography, like if you would have told me ten years ago or like when I was in high school that I would be a photographer, I would have been like, haha okay. Not in a bad way. Just, it requires a lot of creativity. And I felt almost like an imposter when I had started, because I would post on like different Facebook groups and people would be like, This is so creative. Like, this is so great. Like, you’re, you know, all these things. And I’m like I don’t think I am, but thank you so much. And I realized recently that I am a problem solver. That’s where I shine. Problem solving is what I get really excited doing. And so I feel like when I am in a rut, I have to kind of create a problem. I have to. It’s like, if I’m in a rut, I have to identify, okay, what is the problem? What dynamic is not fulfilling me? And then I have to come up with a solution. And that’s kind of how I frame or find creativity is I feel like just kind of posing different situations as problems rather than how can I make this creative? And it could be, you know, all those different things where we put things on our camera and we look like psychos. I wanted to do something creative and my kids had a holiday bag, it was clear one of the cellophane bags and I had a little snowman. And I don’t know, it was crazy, but I put it under my camera and I was like, Oh, this is cool. And it was kind of like my problem was I felt like the photo was flat. And then I saw that they had this bag and I grabbed it and I was like, okay, there’s my solution to this problem. So I think that’s really helped me stay inspired is even if I’m making up made up problems, that maybe don’t exist, but it helps me stay moving forward. 

[00:23:34] Lisa DiGeso I love that. That’s really neat. And it’s really interesting to know that about yourself, too, is like, how do I get my brain to engage, to, like, create, right? And you have to create creative problem solving. That’s so cool. 

[00:23:46] Karina Beck And I think that’s why I love adventure photography, because everything is different. Like I rarely use the same location twice, like back to back. I’m always going all over the place and I feel like I’m always having to problem solve or adapt to some new situation with like the trails. I don’t know. There’s just so many different things that can go on when you’re kind of relying on Mother Nature and so like love, like that’s when I thrive where I’m like, okay, where I’m like, okay, this isn’t we we can’t do this anymore, but we can have it over here. And like, I get so excited when I’m able to do that kind of show. Like, I don’t know that I can bring my clients in that adventure, too, of, like, we don’t need to get stuck or dwell with what is wrong. But here, this is exciting. We can pivot, we can make it really quick this way. 

[00:24:39] Lisa DiGeso I love that. It’s funny because new locations are so exhilarating, right? Like finding someplace new. And it’s it’s funny because I have a habit of, like, going to the same places and then I’m like, Why am I bored? And I like to go find some new places girlfriend. 

[00:24:57] Karina Beck See, I have the opposite problem where I’m like, Why am I always stressed out? Because I don’t ever keep anything the same. I’m always changing something and I love it. I do love that. But maybe it would be easier if I just got some roots somewhere, right? 

[00:25:15] Lisa DiGeso Sounds like you what you’re doing is working. Now, how do you stay organized and manage your time as a photographer? 

[00:25:26] Karina Beck Does anyone have a great answer to that? 

[00:25:29] Lisa DiGeso I know, right.

[00:25:33] Karina Beck I think the biggest thing for me is just treating your business as business. I had to stop, I mean, I had a three under three or three under four. I had 2 under 2, I’ve had small kids. I’ve had to work till two, three in the morning and I was just getting so exhausted. And you’re pouring from an empty cup everywhere in all areas of your life. And so I feel like once I started, like I don’t edit past a certain time, if I wake up early, I’m not jumping right on my computer. I’m taking time to like, have a coffee and enjoy the morning, do whatever I need to do. And I feel like I kind of have different parameters for myself where like once these are done, then I can go and get an edit or I can go and do things for my business. I’m somebody who would work, work, work, work, and I would keep working. And that’s just not sustainable. It’s really figuring out how you can implement different things to be sustainable and then organization. I do a lot of automation and I think that’s helped. I have an online booking calendar, so all of my clients have to go on and they have to book, and if they don’t, then they’re not booked. And so I don’t overbook myself. You can’t, you know, if it’s not on there, it’s not available anymore. And then I use the same CRM Studio Ninja, so everything goes through there. So I feel like I just try to simplify things and I don’t like I try not to implement too many new things with that just because then it just gets hard keeping track of where everything is. 

[00:27:17] Lisa DiGeso Yeah, that’s good. That’s good advice. So you ready for our Lightning round? 

[00:27:23] Karina Beck Yes. Yes. 

[00:27:24] Lisa DiGeso Okay. Coffee or tea? 

[00:27:27] Karina Beck Coffee. Iced espresso. 

[00:27:29] Lisa DiGeso Yeah. Mhm. Most luxurious vacation you’ve ever been on? 

[00:27:37] Karina Beck I don’t know about luxurious, but I just feel like. So when we were in Germany, we did a night trip to Switzerland, and we camped in Lauterbrunnen, and you’re in a valley and there’s waterfalls. And we went camping with the two, we had two kids at that point. And I just remember like thinking, this is something that we would never be able to do again, not that we would never, but that it was one of those things that, like we would have never known about Lauterbrunnen and I don’t know, and it wasn’t super luxurious. We literally camped in a tent, but it was just like luxurious and like high quality experience. Like it was something else. Like it was like in God’s country, Like, I just couldn’t, it was beautiful. If you haven’t heard of Lauterbrunnen, look it up, it is so pretty.  

[00:28:26] Lisa DiGeso I will. Love it. Morning person or night owl? 

[00:28:30] Karina Beck I’m a recovering night owl. I am a night owl through and through. But I want to be a morning person so badly and I’ll go through phases where I can wake up. But I’m a night owl. I’m for sure a night owl. 

[00:28:48] Lisa DiGeso Same. So there it is. Because I keep reading all these like the 5 a.m. club and like people get up and they have all these, like, amazing morning routines and I’m like, my morning routine is coffee. That was it.

[00:29:05] Karina Beck Totally. Getting a cup of coffee. My husband, he wakes up so early, he’s up at 430 or five in the morning and I try so hard to wake up with him and I’m such a heavy sleeper like he’ll poke me to get up and I like sleep through it. I’ll sleep through all of my alarms, but I’m just yeah, it’s a lot. If I’m not in bed before eight or nine, I’m not waking up in the morning like, Yeah. 

[00:29:26] Lisa DiGeso Oh my gosh, I love it. What three things do you want to be remembered for? 

[00:29:32] Karina Beck So hard. I think firstly for being a present mom and wife being with my family, I think that is something that I’ve struggled with. So I think that I would like to be remembered for it because that means I’ve succeeded in that I’ve been able to get through, but it’s so hard being there, I don’t know, being there in the chaos. So just being present with my family. Second thing, to be adventurous, to, you know, to always look for something new and to prioritize adventure. Prioritize adventure, number two. And number three to be remembered for?It’s so hard, Lisa. 

[00:30:25] Lisa DiGeso I know. 

[00:30:27] Karina Beck I think just knowing that life doesn’t need to be perfect, to be content or to be fulfilled, like not being able to I don’t know, just take in everything that life is and being content with it. And I don’t know how that would be remembered, how that I don’t know. But that’s like something. There’s something in there. 

[00:30:58] Lisa DiGeso I love it. I mean, just being satisfied with your life, really, right? I love that. Do you like to cook? 

[00:31:11] Karina Beck I do. 

[00:31:12] Lisa DiGeso What do you like to cook the most? 

[00:31:14] Karina Beck So there’s a theme in my life of trying something new all of the time. So I like cooking. Any new recipes I find on Pinterest or Half Baked Harvest, I really love following her, all of her things, so I try making that. I did learn how to make bread last summer. A little late to the game cause I know that was like you know so 2020. But I am here now. But I do love cooking. I love cooking like steaks and I don’t know, different. Anything yummy. 

[00:31:49] Lisa DiGeso Yeah, I love it. Do you have any personal projects going on right now? If so, what is it? 

[00:31:57] Karina Beck I don’t have a clear personal project per se, but I’ve been trying to learn video more and video and, like, sound and audio. My youngest, he has Bardet-Biedl syndrome. It’s a rare disease that affects the cilia of the cell. And it’s different for everybody who has it. But there are main characteristics, and one of those are the likelihood that he’ll lose his vision. Like 75 to 90% chance of them all losing their vision in adolescence and being a photographer and being for my entire life work is visual. And that was really tough to kind of come to terms with. And so I was thinking, my kids, I’ve taken so many photos of them and I’m like, They’re still young. Caedmon can enjoy this, but Jude, he’ll have all these photos, but he’s not going able to see them. So how can I how can I still use my gift of photography and give him something when he’s older? And so that comes with video and audio. So I’ve been really trying to it was really intimidating and I feel like I’ve put it off for years because that was like accepting that he was going that this was going to happen and the retreat actually kind of inspired me to finally learn video. And really, I have this I have the mics now. And so I’m really that’s kind of been my personal project over the last few years of figuring out video and audio and figuring out how I can preserve his memories in a way that he can enjoy when he’s older. And we my husband, I had a vow renewal and we hired a videographer. And it was so great, he was able to do the audio for our vows and then like different like all the different sounds from the day. And it’s just really cool, it’s something that I don’t think I would have ever thought about if we didn’t have this, you know, obstacle. But it’s kind of a long I feel like that’s why I haven’t done other personal projects. It’s like, I want to do this first, but I’ve been really putting it off. So. Yeah. 

[00:34:25] Lisa DiGeso Oh, well, I’m sorry to hear about your son, but I love that you’re figuring out a way to make it, you know, a legacy work for him. That’s beautiful. 

[00:34:36] Karina Beck He’s just so fun. He’s just one of those kids that he’s happy all the time. And he’s always, like, wearing how he’s feeling. He’s so much fun. 

[00:34:51] Lisa DiGeso So what makes your soul light up? 

[00:34:57] Karina Beck I think really when I’m able to dive into the now. I feel like the photos and the things that have made me so excited and just like where you just feel like on cloud nine have been those moments where like it’s pure chaos and everything’s stacked against the family or the session or my family or whoever it is. And then the photos turn out like, amazing, like you’re able to get that moment that made it all makes sense and made it all worth it. And I think that’s really what inspires me. And what just makes me so excited is a lot of the time adventure sessions are difficult, like we are hiking where there’s somebody like maybe they didn’t realize that their kid didn’t like the feeling of dirt, or they didn’t realize that like bugs that are so many different things. And it’s like being able to get that imagery that still makes it all worth it is like, so exciting for me. 

[00:35:59] Lisa DiGeso I love that. What has been the best piece of business advice you’ve ever been given? 

[00:36:05] Karina Beck So business related, my dad has his MBA, so he’s kind of giving me trinkets of business advice forever. And when I was younger, I was like, Oh, I don’t care, Dad. Like, why don’t I remember these things? But something that he said to me when we when Tim, when he joined the military was like, remember, people have lives and they’re not just going to go out of the way to like, be friends with you. They’re already in their routine and don’t feel bad if somebody doesn’t accept you into that routine. And it’s not that they’re not accepting you, it’s that they’re already doing what they can and don’t feel bad if you don’t fit in to that. And I feel like. Those words kind of came back to me in North Carolina when I kind of was able to see that like in full force again where people did have their lives. And I feel like I applied that to my business of you can’t take it to heart if somebody doesn’t work with you or if they don’t like whatever. There’s maybe other photographers who you’re like, I really love to be friends with them, but maybe there’s been a disconnect. Like, you’re not able to make these different peer friendships. And I just think that that that’s really been helpful for just keeping my spirit up and being able to move forward and what has mattered in business. I think that emotional connection can be really helpful for so many of us who feel so alone. And that’s why I love your podcast and everything that you do. But I just feel like even though it wasn’t meant for business advice, I feel like that advice really helped me with business, knowing that nobody owes me anything. For me choosing to be a small business and working with myself and I just need to do what I need to do for my business and everything else will work out. 

[00:38:11] Lisa DiGeso Yeah, I love that. So could you share what you’re going to be teaching on the Milky Way Retreat?  

[00:38:19] Karina Beck Yeah, so I kind of gave it away already but intentional storytelling. All things intentional storytelling. I go through identifying what the goal is, and then I have three different things that we go through that help achieve that goal. Things to consider when you are wanting to provide intentional storytelling experience. The three elements that are in my mind before going into the session and then behind the scenes video of a session in beautiful central Washington with wildflowers. It was a stunning location. And just being able to make a video of that. And then I also show my process from start to finish with editing. I choose different photos and I showed how I use photo Mechanic and Lightroom and Photoshop. So that’s kind of the whole the whole start to finish experience. Yeah. So I’m excited. This is something that I love. I’ve probably been a broken recording over here, but it’s something that’s so near and dear to my heart because I just feel like, what’s the word, not that it’s the underdog in the photography industry, I just feel like maybe it’s, I feel like there’s such a pressure to have these perfect clients in these locations and they’re styled, you know, dresses that cost hundreds of dollars, sometimes thousands of dollars. And kids who are in clothing that cost more than my wardrobe. And I just feel like there’s all this pressure to perform in a way where you’ll get recognition. And I just feel like I needed, especially for new photographers, all this pressure. And I feel like, you know, different needs, different, you know, different niches have different needs. And I just feel like, you know, different niches have different needs. And maybe this would be the goal of hiring someone for fine art. And that’s just a totally different mindset. But for this storytelling lifestyle, documentary niche that’s kind of been bubbling over for the last decade. I’ve just I’ve heard that different. I don’t know, I don’t want to say rumblings, but just how it is, it’s so tough to kind of get through this wall of perfection. And so I’m so excited for intentional storytelling to show you can still get what you want in your portfolio while still allowing your clients to recognize themselves, wearing things that make sense to them. 

[00:41:04] Lisa DiGeso So I love to end with this last question and it is, what are you artistically curious about? 

[00:41:13] Karina Beck So I would say video. I’m definitely curious about video and figuring all of that out. And I think I’ve really been just curious about kind of niching down and I thought I was already niched down in a way that made sense to me, where it was storytelling. Like if you have a story to tell, I want to tell it. And so like, they’re different things that like, aren’t in that that I wouldn’t take on. But I think I’ve just been more aware of like, what exactly storytelling am I doing and what am I wanting to focus on and really shine in because I know I can do. I feel confident in my skills that I can do anything under that umbrella, but do I need to? And so I guess I’ve been kind of figuring out how can I get my how can I get my dose of new, while still being in something that’s a little bit more contained? 

[00:42:24] Lisa DiGeso Yeah. Love that. Well, Karina, thank you so much for joining me today. 

[00:42:29] Karina Beck Thank you for having me. So I’ve been looking forward to this for like, I don’t know, the weeks whenever we had scheduled this. And I’m like, okay, so much pressure. But thank you. And I love listening to the other guests and everything that you have to say. So it’s an honor to be here. 

[00:42:49] Lisa DiGeso Oh, my beautiful friends, thank you so much for joining us and tuning in today. I hope you’ve loved this conversation just as much as I have. I am sending you so much of my light and my love today and every single day. We will see you next time. I wanted to take a moment to ask you a little favor. I still appreciate you spending your time with me and tuning in and listening to the show. I would be so incredibly grateful if you could take a quick moment to leave a review on Apple Podcasts. Your review helps other photographers discover the podcast and learn how to grow their own photography businesses and gain confidence to go after their dreams. It also means the world to me personally and helps me know what content you find most helpful. Thank you so much for your support and for being part of our amazing community. 

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