A week ago, I spent a few days in Charleston, South Carolina with my Seniorologie Semester students laughing, talking, learning, growing, crying and having so much fun. I am not even sure where to begin with this recap because there is so much to say! Let’s start with what the Seniorologie Semester program is in case you are not familiar with it!
In the past, I have hosted workshops and Conferences (Conference 12) and I have loved every minute of it. But I always felt like I never got to get to know the attendees as much as I would have liked because hosting big conferences have so many moving parts and little to know downtime for the host to just hang out, talk and get to know the attendees. I knew I wanted something different to host this year. I wanted something where I could truly get to know the attendees or students, get to know their businesses and really be able to spend quality time with them. So the Seniorologie Semester was born! It is a 6-month coaching, mentoring and mastermind program rolled into one! It is for photographers who want to grow the senior side of their business and become the go-to senior photographer in their area with education on pricing, in-person sales, senior model programs, social media, marketing and more! I opened up applications to this program and was so excited to have seven students join me! These seven photographers had complete access to me via email and Voxer where they could literally ask me anything, brainstorm ideas for their specific business, get advice and more. In addition to complete access to me, students got 6 monthly seminars or workshops on specific topics related to building a successful senior photography business, one-on-one coaching calls with me, access to an online community of support from each other and so much more. PLUS, they got to come to Charleston for an in-person retreat and that retreat was last week!!
The purpose of the retreat was to not only to get to see each other in person after six months of online education together but to spend quality time together and work on our businesses. I wanted the retreat to be fun, relaxing, educational, inspirational and more! We stayed together in a beautiful house in downtown Charleston, shared delicious meals, captured amazing photos during the most adorable styled senior shoot, got some new headshots taken, had implementation time to sit and work on projects for our businesses with the help of not only me but each other and more! It was everything I had hoped for and more!!
I want to say a huge thank you to these women who trusted me with their education and investment. I am so honored that you allowed me to be a part of your lives and business for the past six months! I can’t even begin to say how proud I am of each of you and I know that you are going to continue to do amazing things with your businesses. I truly love each of you and will always be here for you if you ever need anything!
I also want to say thanks to my mom for helping me the day before the retreat started with shopping for food and getting everything ready for the attendees! And a big thank you to Christine Hamrick of Christine Hamrick Photography in Charleston for joining us and taking a few photos of us during our education portion of the retreat!!
And now for the Retreat Recap…let’s start with the house! We stayed in this rented home through Stay Duvet and it was called the St. Helena House. It was the perfect backdrop to learning, growing and getting inspired for our businesses. Not to mention a few photos! 🙂
The attendees were welcomed with a yummy Charcuterie board by CHS Charcuterie and some sweet gifts to remember our time together and continue to grow and learn.
After a little welcome time, we set off for our amazing styled senior shoot in downtown Charleston! We rented the fabulously adorable Pink Figgy as a prop for the shoot and everything was styled to fit the look of quintessential Charleston! Blue gingham, pink buildings, soft florals, flowers and of course the Pink Figgy! Two of my LKP (Leslie Kerrigan Photography) Senior Models participated in the shoot and they were amazing! The Semester Students couldn’t get enough of these girls as they modeled perfectly! Shooting in Charleston is a dream and I would highly recommend it if you are looking for an amazing destination shoot.
Check out some of these shots the students got!
After the shoot, we went back to the house for a pasta dinner and lots of talking!! It was the perfect way to end the night!
The next morning we had a yummy breakfast board from CHS Charcuterie and lots of coffee!! Then it was time for our Seminar all about Social Media Marketing for Senior Photographers! We spent two hours talking about how to engage, be consistent with posting, attract seniors and book clients through Social Media!
After the Seminar, we walked to Fuel for lunch! It was so nice to get out and walk together, viewing the beautiful Charleston architecture along the way.
We headed back to the house for a little implementation time which is when the Semester students were able to work on projects and get hands-on help from me. Some worked on their website, some worked on making Reels for Instagram and others got help from me with pricing and more!
Next it was time to get ready for headshots! As much as we like being behind the camera more than in front of it, I strongly believe that we need to show our faces with photos! So I wanted to make sure these ladies left the retreat with content of themselves in addition to the senior shoot we did for content so they could show up on social and their followers could see their faces and get to know the person behind the camera!
We headed to Rainbow Row where we were able to find beautiful backdrops that fit everyone’s look and brand. At one point we were all shooting each other at the same time and it was awesome!!
After headshots, we headed to the most darling French restaurant called Felix! We relaxed, ate great food and just loved spending quality time together.
The night ended with a PJ party, Jeni’s Ice Cream and more brainstorming, talking and learning about senior photography!
I absolutely hated to see the retreat end and can not wait for another one! If you would like to learn more and be added to the waitlist for the next Seniorologie Semester (which will open for enrollment in July!) click HERE!
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