These two words don’t normally describe the same person but in the case of two 18-year-old Potomac State College freshmen, they fit perfectly together. Cameron Dyson is dual majoring in chemistry and business, while Tanner Oaks is a biology major. If future plans of being accepted into medical school wasn’t stressful enough, the couple owns their own photography business, Milestone Studios Photography.
How It Started:
Five or six years ago, Cameron started taking pictures of her little sister. As time passed, she started to become more interested in makeup and would do small photoshoots with her friends, just for fun. Last year while looking through some of her old photos; she realized photography was something she enjoyed and was good at. It was at this point that she decided to quit her part time job waitressing and start pursuing her own business with Tanner. He had previous experience professionally editing videos, so it made sense for them to work together. Tanner said, “I edited videos for years, so I thought pictures would be a piece of cake.” The business officially launched in October 2015, part way into their freshman year.
School and Work:
Balancing a business and a college education isn’t easy for these two entrepreneurs. Cameron said, “That is the most difficult thing about what we do! We always put school first. Tanner and I are both extremely set on getting into medical school once we finish up our 4-year degrees. The great thing about college is that our professors give us a syllabus at the beginning of the semester that has every assignment and test already scheduled. If it weren’t for that, balancing work and school would be so much more difficult! Having school scheduled for us allows us to plan ahead.”
Since the business didn’t take off until a few months into their freshman year, they didn’t know the exact balance between the two. Remembering the past year Cameron recalled, “At a few points in the semester, both Tanner and I felt extremely overwhelmed by the amount of schoolwork we had and the number of sessions we were taking on each week, so we decided to cut back on our photography a bit.” During school months they don’t schedule sessions on a weekend before a test so they have time to prepare, and only one or two sessions on their free weekends. As finals approach they plan on cutting back even more until the end of the semester, but with summer will be taking on full-time scheduling of sessions.
The studio specializes in on-site wedding, family, engagement and senior photography. Most of the sessions they do is natural light, on-site photography, but they just purchased and received new equipment for an indoor wedding session they have booked in May. They plan on offering more indoor studio-style sessions along with the on-site photography when classes let out in May. As of right now a larger portion of sessions they do have been for families, but they also do senior and couple shoots regularly.
These sessions are typically one to two hours long and include hair/make-up services and outfit changes. Since no two weddings are the same, prices are tailored to the scale of the wedding and the bride and grooms wants. All packages include a CD with color and black and white versions of the edited images from the session and the copyright release so that you can get your photos printed where, when, and how you would like to within two weeks of the session.
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Cameron and Tanner have recently started a blog to give advice and tips on photo sessions, photography, and editing. Cameron completed the first blog entry, Senior Portrait Q and A, on April 07, 2016. The blog covers what to wear, hairstyling, editing blemishes, rain checks and what you should bring along. The couple has plans to continue the blog to help not only their customers but anyone preparing for a session or in the photography business.
How to Contact:
Cameron and Tanner can be reached by messaging on one of the studio’s many pages; on Facebook, Instagram or by email at MilestoneStudiosPhotography@gmail.com.
Milestone Studios Photography has the ability to grow along with its young talented owners.
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