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SCHOOLED STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Anna Graf | Elena S Blair Education

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A "mom with a camera", on a mission!





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This month we decided to do a series of student features, highlighting the students of my fine art portrait course, Schooled. This our first solo feature of the month but if you missed it we did a collaborative feature last week! Today we are excited to highlight Anna Graf from Portland, OR!

When you took Schooled, how many years had you been in business? 

Eight years part time while working a full time office job. I went full time with photography in 2019. I had quit my office job a few months before I heard about the course on PhotobizX podcast.

I had not had any school photography experience prior to taking the Schooled course but my kiddo was going into preschool and I wanted to take my business full time. It seemed the perfect fit, so while he was in school for 4hrs in the mornings, I was going to other schools to do school pictures.

How much money did you make on your first school after implementing Boutique School Photography and how much did you make total last year with Schools alone? 

My first year I booked 3 schools with about 150 kids. I can’t remember how much each made but I think it was about $8k total and realized this was going to be something I’ll do every year going forward.

Last year I photographed just about 1k kids at 6 schools and made $22k!!!

What gear do you use for your school photography?

I have a nikon z6ii, 50mm 1.4, light stand, backdrop stand, popup backdrop, clamps for the backdrop, I use a 5ft white reflector to bounce some of the light to reduce shadows, and my strobe is the flashpoint 600 with a 60in white parabolic umbrella. I also use the nikon transmitter for that, all wireless and have a cute shutterbuddy for the little littles that can’t engage with my silly jokes. Three little things I use are gaffer tape to put on the ground for kiddos to know where to stand, a foldable step stool for me to sit on and last year I added a garden kneeling pad to help my knees on the hard gym or concrete floors.

What would you say to someone who is on the fence about joining Schooled? 

It’s a no brainer if you are looking to add to your income with weekday morning work. I LOVE that schools are so predictable, I arrive around 8am, set up while kiddos are coming to school, photograph them for 3-4hrs and am home for lunch. Work on prepping gear for the next day, run the photos through AI for culling and am done with my day to go pickup my kiddo from elementary school. The other thing I wanted to say is that if you’ve taken other photography courses, sometimes they don’t give you all the details or it feels like they can be too broad in their scope. This course gives you EVERYTHING. I went through the course in 2 days, got models the next week and had inquiry emails with the template included in the course going out to schools within 2 weeks. My first year I booked 3 schools, about 150 kids and I’m still with all those schools.


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