Courage & Confidence: How Kristine Richer Built Her Business Under the Stars
– Transcript: Episode #184
[00:01:42] Well, hey there, and welcome back to another episode of the Hint of Hustle podcast. I’m your host, Heather Sager. And friends, this week’s interview, you are going to love as you do love all of them. I’m bringing you my friend Kristine Richer under the name Kristine Rose Photography. If you love beautiful images, specifically beautiful images of the sky.
[00:02:04] Kristine specializes in Milky Way photography and has an online education business teaching other photographers how to capture that Milky Way photo. Now, to be perfectly honest, before I met Kristine. I only associated the Milky Way as a candy bar, never even thought about it as something different, nor did I think there would be an entire business centralized around teaching somebody a very specific form of photography.
[00:02:29] But it just goes to show you that when you specialize in a very specific area, people and people want to learn about it. They will pay you great money for that and the thing that I love the most about Kristine’s story, which is why I had to have her on the show side note, you’re gonna learn how I met Kristine.
[00:02:47] And at the very end of the episode, I tell you the activity we did together at the place we met, that we were both literally sobbing over like, yes but that’s at the very end of the interview. We finally share what actually happened at the event we met at But the reason why I wanted to have you on is Kristine’s story is like many of us where she hustled her booty off through her twenties establishing herself in her career, and here’s the thing, her photography has been published in print runs in more than a million place, like print runs of more than a million. It’s been shown all over the world. She had an exhibit with her featured in it last summer in Nova Scotia. She has notably had billboard size images shown at the Javit Center in New York. Side note, I once did a trade show at the Javit Center, so I’m familiar with that.
[00:03:37] Also in Nuremberg, Germany. She’s very, very successful in the photography world but she’s very, very humble in the business world, y’all. And she has a, she’s an incredible business and she has done it with two kids at home. She’s got a three-year-old and a six-year-old, and she’s just one of the most humble business owners that I know.
[00:04:00] And I’m just in awe of how much she has accomplished and how she’s just amazing. She’s fricking amazing and you’re going to love her and I want you just to pay attention to the language she uses in this episode. There are a lot of nuggets, but specifically she’ll give you her secret recipe for what she embraces from an attitude perspective, from a skill perspective, her relationship, of course with the word hustle, how that’s evolved, really what made the big difference for her when she shifted from hustle into having a business designed in a way that actually fuels her own creative gifts, things that she loves doing, fills her own cup and gives her the space and freedom to focus on her family. So I will not wait, make you, wait another minute. Here is my interview with Kristine Richer. Get ready. It’s a good one.
[00:05:05] All right, Kristine, welcome to the show officially. I’m so happy that we’re finally doing this.
[00:05:11] Kristine: I am too. Thank you so much for having me, Heather. It’s great to be here.
[00:05:14] Heather: All the way, all the way tuning in from Canada. Why don’t you do a quick introduction and tell people what you do in your online?
[00:05:22] Kristine: Yes, absolutely. So my name is Kristine Richer and I am coming from the wilds of Canada. I live on the east coast of Canada in Nova Scotia, and I am a fine art Milky Way photographer. So my online business is education for hobbyist photographers who want to learn how to photograph the Milky Way.
[00:05:42] Heather: Okay. This is so fascinating because a lot of the people that I’ve had on the show previously have all been like business to business, like coaching copywriters, things around that, and your business is so fascinating to me.
[00:05:57] We’ll, back up for a moment. So Kristine and I met when, we were ended up sitting next to each other at a live event together last year in California. I remember it was the last week of March of 2022 and we became fast friends after we had to go through a very awkward activity
[00:06:17] Kristine: Yeah, that’s an understatement.
[00:06:18] Heather: Yeah. Yeah, it was like a personal growth kind of seminar conference thing where we had to like bear our most vulnerable things to the world. But that is how we met and we became Voxer friends and we’re now in a mastermind and we chat all the time together. So I know lots about your business and I’m very excited for my audience to get to know you.
[00:06:35] I am curious, that program that we did together, was that the first like bigger or higher level program that you invested in for your business?
[00:06:41] Kristine: Yes. Yep. Absolutely. It is the very first one. I invested in the entry level to that program in 2019 when I was pregnant with my daughter. And then, yeah, in 2021, I got into this higher level program, first time I’ve ever done something like that. I didn’t even tell people I knew how [00:07:00] much it cost, cuz they would’ve just been like, are you kidding me? Like, that’s a mortgage. What, what are you doing?
[00:07:05] Heather: Yeah. We do some wild things as business owners, but hey, it brought us together and that it’s been a very great program.
[00:07:11] Kristine: That’s right.
[00:07:12] Heather: Okay, so I wanna talk about lots of things today, but let’s talk about, so your business specifically, photographing the Milky Way, like so do you, did you start as a photographer? Like give us the, how did you develop your expertise and then why the pivot into online business?
[00:07:26] Kristine: Yeah, absolutely. So I did start as a photographer. So I went to a local art university here called NSCAD University. So the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. That’s university. It’s confusing. So I went there with the intention of being a photographer. I actually did two bachelor degrees in five years there. I did a Bachelor of fine Arts with a major in photography and a bachelor of design with a major in interdisciplinary design.
[00:07:50] Straight outta university, I went and worked in what I call corporate creative, where I worked for an international toy company and I was a product designer. I’ve designed thousands of kids’ toys and I ran the photography studio, so I worked there for 11 years. Now in addition, that whole time,
[00:08:07] Heather: Hold on, hold on. You designed kids toys? Are we just gonna glaze over that? Like what kind of toys are we talking about? Like arts and crafts, toys.
[00:08:16] Kristine: Yeah, arts and crafts. Probably the biggest ones that people would’ve known, but I’ve been out of it now for a few years since I’ve been in my own business. But squishies were like, you know, the foam toys that you squish.
[00:08:28] Heather: The squishy, mellow things?
[00:08:29] Kristine: Yeah. Yeah. So ours weren’t squishy mellow, but they were that, and we sold like millions of them.
[00:08:35] Heather: Yeah. Oh my gosh. My kids have two ones that are, they’re not squish mellows, they’re like a different brand. But they’re like shaped like donuts and animals simultaneously which is weird but they love them, they love them.
[00:08:47] Kristine: Would have been some of the ones that I worked on, because yes, we had ones like that too. Yeah.
[00:08:51] Heather: Yeah. That’s cool.
[00:08:52] Kristine: Yeah, so I did that. Now, in addition to that, actually before that even started, I also, while I was doing my undergrad, I started teaching photography at the university. So while I was at NSCAD University, I started teaching photography to adults.
[00:09:05] I worked in the extended studies department and I was like a little, like 21 year old Kristine walking into a room full of 16 adults. Youngest one in the room was me, and I’m like, okay, let’s learn. So I have been teaching for longer than I’ve been doing anything else and then from that, I kept teaching until I had my son.
[00:09:26] I had my son in 2016 and I worked a lot. I worked a lot. I had, I taught at NSCAD. I worked in my full-time job and I also had a side hustle the whole time. I ran my own photography business, the entirety of the time that I was doing all that and then I had my son and I was like, can’t do this, like I basically teaching at the university, I didn’t make any money. The tax bracket that I was in, all the money that the university paid me just went to extra taxes. So I was like, you know, I love it. I love teaching, but I can’t be away, be out of the house at 8:00 AM and not get home until 10:30, 11 o’clock at night when I have a small kid.
[00:10:04] So I stopped teaching at the university and I started teaching privately and I taught privately through after I had my son. So it would’ve been 2018 through the next year and into 2019 and I got pregnant with my daughter and that was in, I had my daughter in 2019 so I was teaching up until about mid 2019, and then My daughter was six months old in March of 2020.
[00:10:31] And that was when I was like, okay, she’s six months, she can eat. I am no longer the sole provider for her, like she can have someone other human can come here and give her food and keep her alive. That means I can start doing a little bit of of teaching and I hadn’t yet. I was like, I’ll go back to my full-time job and et cetera. I was on Canadian here, so we have maternity leave, so I had a year long maternity leave and then I started running ads to my classes and no one was buying, and I remember sitting at my kitchen table and my husband’s there. I was like, I wonder if no one’s buying cuz of this covid thing. It’s weird.
[00:11:06] Normally people have started buying my course by now and well I think everyone here knows what happened with that. So I pivoted and decided to take my courses online. And if we wanna back up and see how did this shift? Cuz I have done multiple genres of photography. I started doing Milky Way photography specifically after my son was born.
[00:11:31] And this will be for any moms here who have gone through that phase of complete and utter kind of madness that it is when you’re in the newborn phase. I really loved prior to having my son going out, hiking with my dog, taking pictures of sunset like we do long like sunset hikes. And then it was like I always had my son at bedtime and bedtime somehow was always sunset.
[00:11:54] Like sunset’s, not the same time throughout the year, it’s always sunset. And so I was just like, you know what? I’m not sleeping. So why don’t I just get less sleep? And after I get him down to bed at night, I’ll go out at night and take pictures and that’s how I started being a Milky Way photographer, and then everything cascaded from there.
[00:12:12] Heather: Okay. Most moms in that face, right, have been like, oh, I’m not sleepy. We go to like Facebook or now TikTok or like, we pass the time, but man, you like said, okay, how can I feel my soul and get outside. I mean, you’re outdoorsy person. I always like to think that I could be an outdoorsy person, maybe that’ll come.
[00:12:31] I don’t know.
[00:12:33] Kristine: I am an outdoorsy person. I grew up in the middle of nowhere in Nova Scotia. So like my what, my entertainment was as a child was going out into the woods.
[00:12:44] Heather: Yeah.
[00:12:44] Kristine: You know, like there’s, my mom always used to tell this story how like my brothers lost me. They were just like, I wish she would stay lost. And I just like went and brought a blanket out and was sleeping in a field. Anyways, so, yeah, I like being outside, but it was definitely like, it was a fueling, like I remember being in this stage like, who am I now? And, and I just felt like I had lost a huge piece of myself because I lost that creativity and this was a way to do it, even though sleep probably also would’ve been a good idea but,
[00:13:14] Heather: Yeah. Okay. You mentioned the word creativity. I know obviously as a photographer there’s like this baked in creativity that comes with that, but one of the things that I’ve always really admired around how you run your business is you’re curious and you’re really creative for how you explore new things. So can you talk to us, I want you to share a little bit about how you launch in your business and how you innovated that recently.
[00:13:40] Kristine: Yeah, absolutely. So my launches, I open up registration for my signature course, my photography masterclass a couple times a year and I always run these live events around it cuz I just enjoy getting to be around people and bringing people together.
[00:13:55] So the fact that I get to have thousands of photographers come in and like. It’s the [00:14:00] coolest thing when they’re like, I didn’t know my entry level camera could capture a photograph of the Milky Way. They’re like, I was doing all these things wrong and in my training, I’m not necessarily the best at naming things.
[00:14:12] So it’s called your first Milky Way photo, and I teach people how to go out and get their first shot. So I’ve been doing this training now since 2020 and this past year I was kind of being like, well, am I gonna keep doing this? Maybe I’ll like put my program on Evergreen and I won’t do the live launching.
[00:14:27] And then I had this idea, and once I had the idea, I was like, that’s crazy. And I was like, but yeah, it would be really cool if I could do it. So the idea was to, in this live training that I did, I do three separate trainings to livestream me out on location, actually photograph it in the Milky Way, and the tech that goes behind that is ridiculous.
[00:14:52] It’s absolutely ridiculous but I did it and it was amazing, like it was the coolest thing I think that I did last year and I had a lot of really cool opportunities last year, and I was able to find a place that was dark enough that had wifi connectivity and I was able to get all the tech working.
[00:15:10] And then when I actually took the photos, they actually worked, cuz that was another thing. It’s like, well let’s hope this works out. And a huge thing, especially here in Nova Scotia is we got clear sky, so that is not always something that happens here in Nova Scotia.
[00:15:25] Heather: Yeah. It literally stars aligning to make, make that happen.
[00:15:29] Kristine: Yes, absolutely.
[00:15:30] Heather: Okay. I giggle. Alright. All entrepreneurs listening, if you’ve ever griped around like, oh, I can’t do that because, or, oh, it’s too complicated, or all those things. Like sometimes when you have an idea, and it might sound wild, like if it lights you up and it makes you excited, like it’s worth exploring. I love that. Did you have a backup plan in case like things went down the, the crapper?
[00:15:52] Kristine: My backup plan was just to do things how I had done them already, so just like kind of not do that bit But that wasn’t a real backup plan cuz I just assumed that it was going to work out.
[00:16:03] Heather: Yeah.
[00:16:03] Kristine: Like at some point it was just gonna figure itself out and I’m good enough with tech and technology that I was like, if things mess up, like I can figure it out. So maybe not the, the best planner there, but I had wholeheartedly like, this is gonna work and we’re gonna, we’re gonna make it work. And the other piece on that is that like, I was very communicative with all of the people who were in it. And so, you know, I would come on in the morning and be like, okay, we thought it was clear skies tonight, but here’s what’s coming on.
[00:16:35] And then one night, we were actually gonna do it that night, and then I actually drove to the location and it was so windy. I was just like, I could take photos but my microphone would be terrible, like people couldn’t hear me. And so then I’m like driving back to do a different training that night. And the whole time though, I was, you know, like I had, one of the new things I did was I got a text message list, so I was like texting people updates which was really useful cuz where there’s a lot of like volatility around what’s gonna happen. This way everyone was kind of crystal clear on it and yeah, it worked out really well. And the, I think the fact that I was willing to make mistakes and to be open and to show that to the people who are attending, also made them get so much more out of it.
[00:17:17] Heather: There are so many lessons in what you just said in that very, very simple story. One of the things that’s really, okay, the thing that you said that was super cool around, I just assumed it was gonna work out, right, and that you could say it could be kind of wild, but also that is exactly why things work out for you is because you have that high belief. But back it up, like you had said that also all those things that you were doing so it would work out, like that constantly checking the, like, the figuring out different scenarios, letting people know. I think I have a question. I’m, I’m curious, is that, I assume things will work out. Has that always been the case for you? Like do you have that level of confidence in all the things that you do or is that just specifically in the lane of photography?
[00:18:01] Kristine: No, that’s not in everything. I wish I could say it was. It is in specific things in my life, in photography and teaching is one of them. It’s one area where I’m always exceptionally confident in what I’m doing.
[00:18:17] Heather: Yeah, And was that the case when you started, you said you started teaching when you were 21 years old and everyone was like way older than you, like at the beginning. How did that feel being a 21 year old speaking to a room of people as the authority?
[00:18:29] Kristine: Oh yeah, it was terrifying every time. The very first class, so we have at, at the university, they have what’s called the equipment cage, and that’s the place where you go and you rent stuff out. I didn’t go into the room until on the dot when the class started.
[00:18:40] I was there half hour earlier, but I hid in the equipment cage and I let the people work in the cage to tell everyone else where to go to get into the class like I hid. It was absolutely terrifying, but like when I worked at the university, I worked in the equipment cage in in the photo lab and that’s why they were like, Kristine’s really good.
[00:19:00] You should, you know it, you weren’t supposed to hire people before they had an undergrad for this position so I technically wasn’t supposed to be allowed. But when they gave me the offer, I was just like, in my head I was like, this is crazy and terrifying, but I’m gonna do it anyways cuz it’s an amazing opportunity.
[00:19:17] And I think that’s the consistent thing, like I often have these opportunities that I’m like, oh, okay, I have no sweet clue how I’m gonna do this, but I’m just gonna do it and then it’ll, it’ll happen. And that’s, you know, when I’m 21 year old Kristine in this room full of people also, when they would say, I don’t know this, and they’d ask me a question and I didn’t know the answer.
[00:19:37] My reply was always, I don’t know but I’ll get back to you next week. Like one of my things consistently is that I will show up in a position where I am, quote unquote, in authority, but I’m also willing to say, you know what? I don’t know the answer to that. Let’s figure it out together. Let’s move forward or I’ll come back with that and I am willing to show those vulnerabilities and those mistakes with people cuz we’re all human.
[00:20:01] Heather: Yeah. And has that been something that over time, that your, like your courage muscle of saying yes or putting yourself in scenarios where you are going to have to be courageous, has that grown over time?
[00:20:12] Kristine: Oh, absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. Yes.
[00:20:14] Heather: What advice would you have, like thinking about, so a lot of online business owners, right where they’re sitting is, we see a lot of people have the conversation around, I’m scared to put myself out there, or I’m scared of failing, or what if this launch doesn’t work or it’s always on the teetering the what ifs.
[00:20:29] What advice would you, would you give to someone, especially maybe someone who’s still trying to get their offer, working consistently. Do you have any advice for them around how to get more confident and comfortable in that, in that courageous leap?
[00:20:44] Kristine: Yeah, probably though your listeners here aren’t going to like it because the answer is to do it and to do it very uncomfortably and know that you will get better each and every time you do it, like it’s the only way that you are going to move forward with something is to actually take action on it. And the things that have given me the most business, but also personal achievement have been when I’ve done things that are wildly uncomfortable and where I’m like, I don’t really know how this is gonna go, but I feel that it could be amazing if it works out.
[00:21:23] And to, on that it’s not always, like first couple times you do stuff. You know, like if we go back to me, when I first started teaching, there were times when I would just come home and I’d be like, oh my goodness, like they all must think I’m an idiot. You know, and, and maybe, maybe they did. I dunno, ,maybe some of them are listening here.
[00:21:44] But the more that you do it, that’s what’s going to give you the confidence. You’re not gonna magically come up with confidence without actually getting into it.
[00:21:52] Heather: Yeah, I love the fact that you said that you’re not gonna like this answer, but it’s like, do it, do it, right? And I think like that really comes back to one of my biggest reasons for starting this brand, the Hint of Hustle brand, is I think a lot of times people, especially in the online space, are sold that like, oh, it can be comfortable, it can be easy, let it be light. And it’s like, no, it actually is going to take work and it’s gonna take a lot of discomfort if you wanna reach bigger goals. So let’s talk about your relationship with the word hustle. I’m curious, what does hustle mean to you? Do you like the word, do you hate the word? Everybody’s got an opinion.
[00:22:29] Kristine: For a while I really didn’t like the word because I was doing too much of it. So I spent my twenties working 70 to 80 hour weeks, just consistently I wore busy as like a badge. So with me kind of. I had this like hustle and busy, it was the same type of thing. So there was some unlearning that had to be done around my value and being busy and having those two things intertwined because they’re not intertwined.
[00:23:02] In terms of hustle, now, I don’t know, I’m kind of neutral to the word. It’s not, doesn’t make me be like, oh no, I don’t wanna do that. And it’s not like, oh, we should do that. I’m a little bit neutral on it. I would say, when we talk about like, the reason why I like, and I was like, yeah, I’ll be on this podcast. The idea of the hint of hustle and the idea that you sometimes need to put in, there’s an extra drive, there’s extra work, there’s extra things to be done that happens in life, like that’s just, there are seasons, there are things that we go through. I don’t know. That’s my, that’s my long answer.
[00:23:33] Heather: That’s good. That’s good. That’s why we like what, it’s funny, when you were describing your twenties, like literally same of the, the twenties is the time to like get on the treadmill, like climb in the mountain to whatever we think we’re doing in our careers, but like that, that is, that is the thing. That is the path.
[00:23:50] Okay. Thinking about in your business, one of the things for me with hustle is what I view with like, hustle isn’t just about hard work in one area. It’s putting the hustle into the right kinds of things that light you up. I see that is really where the entrepreneurs that love and thrive off of these hints of hustle are the ones that put the full ass effort into the things that they are really good at and that actually fuel them and give them energy.
[00:24:15] Where would you say that you like hustle the most in your business? Like when, when are you in a season of hustle? What does that look?
[00:24:22] Kristine: Yeah, I would say it comes up on my launches. That would be the time when I’m getting into the most hustle or if I’m creating something new. So I don’t, I, I’m a pretty rinsed and repeat, like my business is very much, I keep doing the same thing and I keep iterating and making it a little bit better.
[00:24:42] But I also, like my students would be like, but we all really want this and I’m like, ah, well, it’s not part of us.. And so the things that I’ve created, the other, I have a few other courses that I’ve created, it’s all driven by my students and their needs. If I am creating something new, there’s some hustle that goes into that too but I really like it, like I get excited about creation. That also extends to creation of new content and new ways to put together, like the stuff that’s trialling around in my brain in a way that’s useful for people and that they can get results from it. That’s something that I get super, super jazzed and excited about.
[00:25:17] So there will be times when I’m recording a course and it’s like, I get the kids to bed, come back downstairs, turn the lights on, start recording for another three hours but I still, I really enjoy that. Yeah.
[00:25:31] Heather: I do too, like that. That definitely describes how things are on my business. You know, a lot of people I hear that they’re like, oh, live launching. It’s terrible. But I think like, kind of what you’re describing, you enjoy actually live launching. You mentioned that earlier, like the, the thrill of that teaching live piece. What would you say for someone who’s like, oh, I hate live launching?
[00:25:52] Kristine: Well, don’t do it. You know, but also why do you hate it? What is it about it? So, when I [00:26:00] was running all my first launches and doing it all by myself, I had to get my email set up, get my social media posts done, do the reminders, like all of that stuff. And also had to like have energy to be like charismatic in front of people that I’ve never met before who are all going to have opinions about me, like that’s a lot.
[00:26:19] Heather: That’s a lot to carry.
[00:26:20] Kristine: Yeah, it’s a lot. So if you’re doing all of that, yeah, you’re not gonna wanna show up on camera and be with people. But the reason I enjoy live launching that I get super excited about it is that there’s like this collective energy and it makes a heck of a lot of sense for what I’m doing because I live launched during the new moon cycle.
[00:26:41] So I sometimes sound new age-y here, but I live my life by the moon cycles, like I know when the New Moon is. It just happened on the 21st and I know when the Full Moon is. I have cycles of activity during the new moon and cycles of rest during the full moon because you can’t photograph the stars with the moon up in the sky.
[00:26:57] Heather: Yeah.
[00:26:57] Kristine: So my launches, so
[00:26:59] Heather: Hold on real quick. What’s funny about that is you’re totally right, like most people be like, oh, is it your inner body, like energetic thing which I know there are things around that? But like literally for your business, it is moon and stars like?
[00:27:11] Kristine: Yes. Yeah. Actually, literally.
[00:27:13] Heather: Yeah.
[00:27:13] Kristine: Yeah. I do get a lot of people being like, oh, like this and the, like, we’re in retrograde. I was like, I don’t know about any of that. I was like, but I do know the moon can’t be up in the sky when I’m taking pictures. So, but also for my live launches because especially with my Milky Way Launch, I actually teach people to get out there and take their first photo.
[00:27:32] It needs to be launched during a specific period. People need to be consuming the content at a specific time so it just makes sense. And then on top of that, you actually get people going out. You get a lot of people being like, it’s raining here, it’s cloud here. There’s a lot of that. But then you get all the people who are actually going out at the same time and coming back into the group and the collective energy that’s there is something that I personally would really, really miss.
[00:27:58] Heather: Yeah, I, and I love that, and I think, I mean joked about it when I asked you the question, you’re like, well, then don’t but exploring what we don’t like about it. It’s how you just described doing a launch and have you do like your own copy and the emails and all those pieces.
[00:28:12] I’m reminded, I’m gonna share for a second one of my private clients I’m working with right now. She literally is going in launch mode. Shout out. I know you’re listening. She had texted me yesterday. She’s like, holy crap. It was her first launch, all of the pieces moving, and she was overwhelmed and it was instant. I hate live launching. This is terrible. I’d never wanna do it again. She was already planning how to not have to do it, and I had asked her the direct question, do you have to do all these things? And I’d asked, like I went specific, like what are the things that are gonna move the dial? Who’s your on your warm list? Who could you reach out to? How could we simplify this to make it fun?
[00:28:50] Cuz the direct question I asked was, would you still be feeling this way if you were hitting your revenue goal? And these are things we have to ask ourselves, right? But I think what she said back to me is what I wanted to share. And she goes, holy shit. It never occurred to me that I could do it differently.
[00:29:07] Kristine: Hmm.
[00:29:07] Heather: And that’s a big takeaway that I want people hearing is the reason why we’re having these kinds of interviews in the show is to give people different flavors around how business could look like behind the scenes and the takeaway is choose what lights you up and it might be a little hard to make it work, but for you, you like live launching. For somebody if they really don’t like, do exactly what you said.
[00:29:27] Question why don’t I like it? Is it because it’s not working or is it because you don’t like that physical pressure of having to show up, but design the business how you freaking want to.
[00:29:38] Kristine: Yes.
[00:29:38] Heather: That’s the takeaway, y’all.
[00:29:42] Kristine: RIght. Do what you want.
[00:29:43] Heather: Yeah.
[00:29:44] Kristine: Design it how it’s going to work for you and for your energy in the way you like to show up and interact.
[00:29:50] Heather: Yeah. So let’s talk about that piece and the energy. So you’ll go through your seasons, especially with launches, with the moon cycle, and and then I say that by the way, joking. I am kind of interested in getting, like, I’m trying to, starting to understand these things. I’ve been very into human design lately which took me down to reading horoscopes and actually considering these things.
[00:30:09] So y’all, I’m going a little, I’m starting to go a little woo here. Not the point of this rant. But can we talk about when you’re not in hustle mode, like when you’re not in launch, what does, like your typical work look like? I mean, how many hours a week do you work? And Kristine, do you actually like rest? Like what, what’s your flow on when you’re not in hustle mode?
[00:30:32] Kristine: It really depends. I feel like, you know, so we are doing this recording in January. I feel like I haven’t rested for a while , but I also have two small kids. Like my daughter is three, my son is sick, freaking slip. He’s six, but he’s also sick.
[00:30:49] Heather: He’s sick and six.
[00:30:50] He’s sick and six. And I also have a, a parent who’s very sick and I’m primary caregiver in a lot of ways, so, it feels sometimes like I am not resting really that much at all, but in reality I do take quite a bit of time away from the business. It’s not just necessarily structured or scheduled time. It’s more so somewhat reactive but my business is able to handle that so it really depends.
[00:31:22] Like there will be times where, like if I have a week where the kids are in daycare and school every single day and I can work seven hours each day, that’s amazing. I get really excited from that but very often it’s not the case.
[00:31:38] Like I’m often working maybe three to four full ish days a week and then doing some, some evenings here and there, depending on whatever’s going on. In terms of actual rest, like I didn’t work most of December. I worked the first week of December and then I took off the rest of the month cuz it’s busy like life-wise, it’s just busy.
[00:32:00] And in the summer I take some time off too. Now last year I had a solo exhibit. I had a gallery, fine art gallery here, take me on as an artist and give me a solo exhibit which doesn’t generally happen, like when you get your first exhibit. You’re like part of a group. So the summer actually was super busy for me, but this year I’ve actually structured it so that there will be a lot less of that actual working happening in the summer.
[00:32:25] So, you know, holidays time, December, I take time off and then in the summer and then just whenever I need it, like, I will, some days it’ll just be like, okay, the kids were sick all last week. I was doing extra and it’ll be Monday and I’ll be like, okay, I got my stuff done. My assistant has what she needs to get the podcast up. I’m gonna go take a nap, and I go and take a nap and it’s the best thing ever.
[00:32:47] Heather: That’s best boss ever.
[00:32:50] Kristine: Yeah. Yeah.
[00:32:53] Heather: I think that’s so, I think it’s so important that we, we factor in, especially for those who have young kids, right, and a lot of, a lot of the audience does either have young kids or on same thing what you’re dealing with right now, having a sick parent or someone that they’re caretaking for, that is something that I’m hearing a lot more and more about. And I think a lot of times in business when we hear from other mentors, it’s either working really hard or like, hashtag self-care. But there’s also this other factor of taking care of other people and having different busy seasons in life. It’s not just about us and our businesses. There is this whole life we’re living and what we’re doing this for. So I love, I love that you brought that up. We’re gonna go through seasons where it’s gonna be busy in different facets, and it’s really important for us to honor that. I am curious, how do you find little bits of time for just you in all of that?
[00:33:46] Kristine: Well, the really good thing is that my business is kind of like predicated on the fact that I can take good photos, and when I’m out at night under the stars, that’s me time.
[00:33:58] Heather: Yeah.
[00:33:58] Kristine: So like, you know, my whole thing is about connection with the universe and to something bigger. But for me, there’s not a lot of times when my brain actually turns off. But if I am out under the stars and creating, it’s also like one photo can potentially take 30 to 45 minutes to create an actual, just like time that my camera is running and shooting. So I am there, I’m technically being productive. My camera is shooting. I have to, you know, make sure nothing comes and knocks it over. There’s no wolves that want to eat me or anything like that, but I can just sit there and be. So, it’s actually kind just like built into my business.
[00:34:38] Heather: Yeah. I think that that is so genius, like you literally built a business that fuels your soul and your like pockets.
[00:34:46] Kristine: That’s exactly it.
[00:34:48] Heather: Yes. Okay. I want, before I we’re, I have more questions, but I want, I know people are probably thinking the exact same thing that I am after you just described what it takes for a shoe. Where can people go and actually see your picture?
[00:35:01] Kristine: Yeah, absolutely. So I’m Kristine Rose Photography. Kristine is with a K. You’ll find me on Facebook and Instagram. That’s kind of like my working place. I, if I take a picture, I put it up on there. My website, kristinerosephotography.com has like my limited edition prints and has like the things that I’m actually like, okay, I’ve, I’ve, not just sleep edited these. I’ve actually paid some time and put them in so you can see my polished stuff on my website. But if you wanna see more of like stream of conscious work you can go to my Instagram or to my Facebook and see all of it there.
[00:35:31] Heather: Okay. Love that. And her work is so, so beautiful. We’re gonna link all to that to the show notes so people can see it because I know it’s one thing to describe it and I know if those watched on YouTube, you can see our conversation, but still not showing the images, but you’re doing a beautiful job, like describing and building the desire for me to go now binge them again.
[00:35:47] Kristine: Thank you. Thank you, Heather.
[00:35:49] Heather: Okay. I wanna think about if you were to go back to a 21 year old Kristine who stepped in that classroom to teach and then you think on the fast forward [00:36:00] from then to where you’re now doing your business, if you had the chance to do it all over again, what would you do the exact same and take with you or what would, and what would you remix and change?
[00:36:13] Kristine: Hmm. That’s a really good question. That’s a hard one to answer. I would do a lot of it the same. I learned a lot, working a lot in my twenties. Honestly, doing my full-time, teaching at NSCAD on the side and also running side hustles, like I did pretty much every type of photography, imaginal, you know, I did food photography, fashion, photography, wedding photography, portraits, newborns, pets, like everything. So i, you know, it’s, I hear a lot of people like, I’m multi-passionate and I’m like, it not be, this is, especially in photography world, like I’m a multi-passionate photographer, and it’s like, it might not be that. You’re just exploring everything.
[00:36:53] And so I like that I took this time to explore. What would I remix and do a little bit different I think I would have taken the leap a little bit sooner than I did. It was definitely a, a push, like it was like a covid business push. It’s like, you do this or you don’t do it, like it was, that was the, the time to, if I’m actually gonna do this work, like I bought this course to teach me how to take things online, I’m going to do it now or I’m not going, going to do it at all.
[00:37:25] But I don’t, you know, knowing me and knowing where I was in life and, and all of that, I don’t necessarily see how Kristine could have got there before then, especially here’s one of the other things that really was part of all that. After I had my son, I started doing like a personal development course which I’d never done before.
[00:37:45] I was just like, everything’s fine. I don’t need to think inside my head on anything. There’s nothing wrong with me. Spoiler alert. Now I’m just like, go to a therapist. I’m like, here are all my things.
[00:37:56] Heather: I know best.
[00:37:59] Kristine: I’mfalling apart but I don’t know that I would’ve had that level of introspection prior, prior to having my son. So, you know, I would like to think that I could have hit go on this before that. But I also know, I see the progression and I see how it perfectly leads to where I am now. And it’s, it’s interesting because I used to listen to a ton of podcasts and I would listen to people and they would be like, you know, and I just, at my first year in business and I made a hundred thousand dollars, and I remember listening to them and being like, that’s not gonna be me. That was crazy.
[00:38:33] And I would listen to them and I would come up with all of these reasons why they could have done it. And I’m like, oh, well it makes sense of course that you did that or that you were successful, like, look at all these things in your life that led up to it. And now it’s like, oh, I did get six figures in my first 12 months of, of bringing my courses online and now I have this like hindsight 2020 thing where I’m like, oh, I actually see, I see all of these pieces that fit together in my path that brought me to this point.
[00:39:02] Heather: Yeah. Oh my gosh. That’s like, gives me chills thinking about that because that is, I’ve had the same conversation with so many business owners. When you get to that point where you’re able to look back and see how, okay, all of these skills that you’ve been collecting, all the way, the resilience, the tenacity, the hustle, all the pieces when when you find what, what you enjoy doing and what you can make money from, and you’re putting it into action. I feel like that’s when you get clarity around how everything connects.
[00:39:29] Kristine: Yeah.
[00:39:30] Heather: Yeah. I love that. I love that so much.
[00:39:31] Kristine: Absolutely.
[00:39:32] Heather: Do you have any advice for a business owner who listens to this interview going, okay, I’m like, curious about your photos, but more so they’re now going, okay, I really want to start taking my business seriously, give myself some freedom in my business. What’s your best advice for other business owners who are trying to navigate a maybe a season of hustle?
[00:39:51] Kristine: Hmm, absolutely. So have a goal and have a goal that motivates you. It, you know, I, I say it very simply, like, oh, I took my business online 2020. Okay. So I had a six month old daughter at home. I had my son who was three years old, home, not actually three, it was just turning three, home. And I was full-time with them home. My husband was home, but working. Fortunately, he has a position where he could work remotely and I said to my husband, like, okay, I, I’m gonna do this. I’m gonna start this course and he was like, you’re on maternity leave. You’re supposed to be like napping. I was like, Nope, nope, I’m not, because in my head I could see it. I was like, what if I don’t have to go back to my full-time job? What if I could make a living, creating art, doing something that fills me up, transforming other people’s lives, and also bringing flexibility to our house?
[00:40:51] So on days like today when my son is home sick, I can be home with him. I can do some work. I can make him food, I can take care of him. I can be up in the middle of the night, like we have all of this flexibility, and I could see that with crystal clarity when I was in it, and I say when I was in it, like, just to give you a picture of how this course came to life and how the first, cuz I launched. I did a live launch, never done anything like that before, by the way, like this was all like completely brand new to me. I didn’t even know like what Evergreen was at that time. The program we were in, they were like, live, live launching. This game really good results. I was like, okay, that’s what I’m gonna do but I built all of that after eight. In the evenings after my daughter and son went to bed. At midnight, my daughter would get up to do a midnight feed and then I would work until 2:00 AM and then I would get up at 8:00 AM with the kids and be with the kids all day until 8:00 PM. And then I did that while I built out the launch and then while I built out the course over the next, I think it was six weeks to build the first course and my husband did not get it, like we were definitely like, there was tension there cuz he was, what are you doing? Why are you doing this? And so if I take this full circle, cuz I’ve gone on a story rant here, back to my advice, it’s you have that goal, you can see what you’re working towards in mind because there will be times when you go hard at it. But if you have that end goal in mind and you are doing the things that will actually move the needle to get you to that, that’s what’s gonna keep you motivated and let you go through the times where maybe you do have to do more, but it will get you to the place where it’s like, okay, I can take a step back, and then you come back and forth as you go through it.
[00:42:38] Heather: Yeah. Okay. Mic drop. Mic drop. That was a very good side tangent story. It was not side tangent at all. Okay. It was beautiful and that is it. I think that’s, I mean, that’s the thing is in order to create the life that you want now, you have to put in hard work. But for you, that connection point around getting really, really clear on the big goal and then put your full ass into it. A freaking mean girl. I love it. I am so appreciative of you and I’m, I’m still constantly, I joke all the time. My, I remember my first impression of you after the event, after we like cried together.
[00:43:11] We, so, okay. I should give you guys context. Kristine and I, I’m gonna give him the short story. Kristine and I had to sit next to each other. This activity was to write a letter from the nagging bitch voice in our head who says all the shit about us. We all have that voice, right? We had to write a letter from that person of like all the things they say to us in our own heads.
[00:43:32] And so Kristine and I sitting next to her, along with our friend Amanda. We’re, we’re writing our letters and we’re all cried writing it down, and then afterwards, the facilitator, he is like, perfect, now turn to the two people next to you and read your letter out loud. And we’re like, what the…? So that was my meeting.
[00:43:52] My first meeting of Kristine was just like, let me just pour out the like worst thoughts in my brain to another person. So we had very deep connection, but beyond that moment, what I took from when we left, I remember thinking like, holy crap, this gal is such a badass and she is so humble about it because, I mean, you didn’t say it in here, but like you have a multiple six figure business and just being like, Mel Laila, I just like, I’m just like, I don’t know. I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m just showing up and doing it, and you are so humble about it, but you, you are fierce girl and you like know way more about business than you give yourself credit for and I am just an admiration for you, like, you’re so great.
[00:44:38] Kristine: Thank you. That’s really sweet you to say. It’s yeah, for everyone listening, we bulb our eyes out, like I’m almost like tearing up just thinking about it when we were talking and all the things that I said to a person that I’ve never said to anyone. It certainly was. It was a very good bonding experience, obviously. But it’s interesting you say that because it is a lot of times, again, I’m gonna, [00:45:00] like, I listen to these podcasts for like multiple four, six figures.
[00:45:03] And I’m like, yeah, I’m not gonna do that, but that’s okay. I just wanna be able to take pictures and support my family. And I assumed that these people just like had all their shit together and like knew everything that you could, like how could you not? And now that I’m here and I’m like, I’m just still doing the same thing that I’ve done before and I appreciate hearing you say that I’m a bad ass cuz it does not feel like that, so thank you.
[00:45:27] Heather: Please wear the badass badge for the rest of the day. We’ve swapped out the busy badge for the badass badge. You are, you’re just, you’re just a rockstar and I am so, so thrilled that my audience gets to hear from you, finally. So best place to connect with you, tell us about your podcast. Is it specifically for photographers?
[00:45:46] Kristine: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it’s supposed to be. So my podcast is called After Dark Photography Podcast, and it is for Milky Way Astro photographers, but it’s kind of, I kind of check my audience a little bit and there’ll be a lot of them listening here and they’ll be okay with it because I also get into a lot of other stuff, like I get into.
[00:46:09] The things that have pushed the needle forward on my creative practice, on my business practice, which kind of they go hand in hand, like I become a better creative as I become a better business person which is funny cuz in the artist culture it’s like, oh, selling out, like there’s so much shit around all of that.
[00:46:26] So I do specifically, like, I just, I have a monthly thing that I started this year where I talk about what’s up in the night sky to photograph. I talk about different gear and different techniques, but then I also do things like talking about ways that you can reverse engineer your goals and I have my students be like, I know this is about far, but like I, this is good advice for everything.
[00:46:47] It’s like I feel like I’m in therapy with Kristine. Not a therapist, but so it it’s a little, it’s for photographers. Yes, but it takes it farther than that too.
[00:46:57] Heather: Yeah. Okay. Love that. So I think that’d be good for anyone listening. If you are a photographer, great. But I think you need kind of creative entrepreneur. I think that could be fun too. Okay. We’re gonna give you lots of love on the social media, so we’ll connect with you. Thank you. We’re gonna link everything up for the show notes. Kristine, thank you so much for spending your morning with me on this beautiful interview, and y’all go give Kristine all of the love on this episode.
[00:47:18] Kristine: Thank you so much for having me, Heather. I love it and I look forward to connecting with anyone. Send me a DM on Instagram. Love to talk to people and hear what you’re getting from these podcast episodes and support in any way I can.
[00:47:30] Heather: That’s great. All right, friends, we’ll see you on the next.