Lin Marty On Balancing Passion, Pursuit, And Family

It was perfect timing and the perfect message. Listening to a podcast about creative pursuit, Lin Marty knew this was a sign to start her photography business. With more than 10 years of advertising experience in Corporate America, she was at a crossroad. So she did what any creative genius would do, she merged her interests together.

Read more about Lin’s transition from Corporate America to photographer extraordinaire.

Often times, our most difficult moments are our most defining moments? What was your last most difficult moment? How did you get through it and what did you learn from it?

A little over 2 years ago I hit a rut with my self-esteem and really didn’t know what I wanted to do next in my life.  Everything was going absolutely great with my career in advertising, but I felt like I had spent so much time down one path that I missed the opportunity to be successful in other areas. I grew up in an environment that championed a single career. So, stating that I wanted to be a photographer made many think I would be giving up on what I had already worked so hard to achieve and that I would be overworked and exhausted. 

In simplest terms, being a photographer made me feel guilty as if I would let my advertising career suffer as a result of it, but eventually I realized that was all nonsense in my head.  About a year ago, I was listening to the Creative Warriors podcast that had Emilie Wapnick as their weekly guest.  She spoke about this mental dilemma and labeled likeminded people like me as Multipotentialites. Multipotentialites are individuals that have many interests and creative pursuits in life with no one true calling. By actively pursuing all my passions, I now believe that I can do both advertising and photography and I don’t need to give up one for the other. I can have 2 passions and excel in both.  Between it all, I have diversified my life, which keeps me interested and excited, not exhausted or bored.

What lessons are you taking with you into 2017 from last year?

In 2016, I learned to share my work with family, friends and coworkers as I built my business. They are my biggest cheerleaders and motivated me to keep pushing forward and for that I am very thankful. I’ve also learned to be strong and not provide my services for free now that I have a solid portfolio. In the beginning it was hard to tell close ones my fee, but they were – and still are - very supportive and understand this is my business and not a hobby. So in 2017, I am taking all of these things with me and not looking back.

As a photographer, how do you stay inspired? Where do you go to for inspiration when your creativity is running low?

When creativity is running low, I seek out inspiration through storytelling.  As a habit I follow a lot of other photographers on Instagram and engage with their posts often. 

Photographers share their best work, so as I browse through their feeds it’s like a virtual gallery or exhibit for me. I study the photos not to mimic the poses or lighting, but rather I try to understand the story behind the image.

Another way I find inspiration is through music. I often put my headphones on and imagine how that song would be incorporated as part of a scene in a movie.  As I imagine the scene, I break out the visuals as stills. When in doubt, I people watch. Not weird right?

When you are not photographing people, you also are the VP, Director at a large advertising firm. How are you able to balance work, personal, and passion? What tips do you have for someone struggling to find the balance? 

Oh I wish it were that easy! I don’t think that you ever really achieve balance, but rather you teeter-totter between it all. As a VP, Director, the demand for my expertise falls mostly within the weekdays, so I do a majority of my shoots on the weekends and learn as much as I can at night, both of which I don’t mind at all.

As an entrepreneur you have the ability to create your own schedule and work within your own parameters, so it’s important to keep that in mind when building your clientele and hours of operation. Always outsource certain responsibilities to a virtual assistant, if your budget allows. Lastly, in moments of stress, it’s important to do something for yourself to celebrate all your hard work. I personally love the spa and a nice dinner with my handsome husband.

As an entrepreneur you have the ability to create your own schedule and work within your own parameters, so it’s important to keep that in mind when building your clientele and hours of operation

What are you most looking forward to in 2017?

In 2017, I plan to launch a passion project that showcases female entrepreneurs, creatives and leaders in the Greater Los Angeles area by taking their portraits and sharing their stories. It is something I have wanted to do for a long time, so in 2017 I am making it happen.

What are your current and future goals for yourself?

My current goals are to work with social media influencers and support them in their social content strategies. I have over 10 years’ experience in advertising, so it’s a way of combining my media and photography skills into one. Long term, I hope to have a thriving business leveraging my experiences and being known in the industry for doing just that.

Want more of Lin Marty? Vist her website linmartyphotography.com and follow her on Instagram, @lin_marty.