Farmington woman’s photo business grew out of a hobbyWhen Jenny Olmanson’s husband bought her a camera for Mother’s Day four years ago, he was supporting a hobby. Olmanson liked taking pictures. She had since she was a kid, when she bought a film camera to take on vacations.
By: Nathan Hansen, The Farmington Independent
When Jenny Olmanson’s husband bought her a camera for Mother’s Day four years ago, he was supporting a hobby. Olmanson liked taking pictures. She had since she was a kid, when she bought a film camera to take on vacations.
At first, a hobby is all Olmanson’s photography was. She took photos of her children, and of other activities in her life. She had fun with it, and as time went on, she kept doing more and more pictures.
Eventually, friends and family started asking Olmanson to take pictures for them, too. So, she did. Then more asked, and more. It continued to the point Olmanson decided she could get paid for what she was doing.
In 2010, Olmanson launched Taken Today, Treasured Tomorrow. A former classmate designed the business’ logo, and her husband’s cousin put together a website.
The business is still not a full-time operation. Olmanson has a day job as chief financial officer for a non-profit organization based in Rochester. She commutes south three times a week for that job. But Taken Today, Treasured Tomorrow is a way for Olmanson to keep active with her photography, and to pay for photo equipment. That original camera, a Canon Rebel, has been replaced by a more advanced model. And there are always new lenses and other equipment to tempt her.
Olmanson is largely self taught. Her two children are frequent test subjects for her. But she’s also taking classes to hone her skills. She’s in the middle of a three-year online class offered by the New York Institute of Photography to help develop her eye for a good photograph and teach her how to pose people.
“I figured if I was going to start doing this for more people I’d better do things right,” Olmanson said.
Business has been good since Olmanson started charging for her work. She has done photos for the daycare her children attend, and for other daycares where she has connections. She’s photographed families and weddings and high school seniors. She likes capturing a wide variety of images. She was busy almost every weekend last fall, and she had a handful of customers every month over the winter.
“I don’t know what summer will bring,” Olmanson said.
Olmanson tries to work with people who want their photos taken. Better to reduce her price, she said, than send someone away empty handed.
“I’d rather help someone out than be seeking the kind of money some photographers charge to get things done,” she said. “If you’ve got the equipment, you might as well use it.”
Olmanson isn’t sure where her photo business will lead. For now, she’s happy with her day job and she likes taking pictures. As long as she can find a good balance between the two, she’ll be happy.
Photos are still a hobby for Olmanson. She’s just getting paid for it now.