Today’s CoChic Cool Chick is attorney-turned-photographer Lynzie Hazan, owner of Bonphotage, a Chicago- and Los Angeles-based photography business. I had the opportunity to work with Lynzie on a styled shoot, and the thing that impressed me most about her was her passion for her craft. With every shot, it was evident that Lynzie had not only thought about every possible angle and detail in the composition, but she was truly loving the whole experience. Read on to find out why Lynzie left her career as a lawyer for her passion for photography – and why she is happy as she’s ever been.
If you are new to CoChic Cool Chicks, every Monday I feature a woman entrepreneur who inspires me, who I am lucky enough to have in my girl boss network. These women are doing great things and whether you aspire to be an entrepreneur or not, I hope that they inspire you to do great things, too. I encourage you to check out their businesses, websites, and social media. And reach out to them, ask them questions, say hello. They’d love to hear from you!
Tell us about your business.
Bonphotage photography is based in Chicago and Los Angeles, but we love to travel and photograph weddings and engagements all over the world! As the founder and lead photographer, I take great pride in making sure that Bonphotage meets and exceeds the bride and groom’s expectations. Before booking, I make sure to talk to the bride and make sure I understand her style and desires to capture her wedding in the most beautiful way possible. We also love capturing families, pets and portraits when we are not busy shooting weddings. We professionally edit every image that is delivered to the couple and thus far, we have received nothing but praise from our couples!
In addition to photography, we provide videography services as we have found it to be economically effective for the couple to book both services with one vendor rather than hiring two separate companies.
What made you decide to start your own business?
Before starting Bonphotage, I practiced international corporate law at large firms around the world (Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Brazil). I don’t regret having attended law school as it has proven very useful in my photography venture, but at the end of the day, my heart kept going back to photography. It is where my passion and dedication lies. They say that when you love what you do, you never have to work a day in your life. To me, that is photography.
What is your favorite thing to photograph?
I consider it an honor to capture weddings. It is arguably one of the most important days in a person’s life and I take the responsibility to make sure it is captured beautifully very seriously. All of the details thrill me…the veil, the flowers, the shoes, but most of all, I love to capture the genuine happiness and emotion on the faces of the couple and their guests.
What do you love most about being an entrepreneur?
I love being able to control my own schedule. As an entrepreneur, I wear many hats and I have to decide how best to prioritize my time. Every wedding, every publication, every consultation is a step towards business growth and it is incredibly fulfilling to watch the business expand and improve.
What’s the most challenging thing about being an entrepreneur?
In the beginning, it is scary to jump from a world where every paycheck is certain to one where you determine your own destiny and success. There are times when it feels overwhelming or I begin to question whether I made the right decisions (did I invest in advertising in the right places? Did I remember to cover everything I wanted in that presentation? Etc.) The stresses are different as a business owner than as an employee, but in my opinion, the benefits far outweigh the negatives.
What’s your best piece of business advice?
Be patient. When you are passionate about something, like I am with photography, it is easy to feel like you are not moving or growing as quickly as you’d like. You want to shoot every single wedding and it is frustrating when you don’t. But, with talent and patience, your work will speak for itself, and trust me, the clients will come.
Do you have any tricks of the trade you could share with us?
Planning a wedding can easily turn into a full time job and brides are often overwhelmed with the process. We take great pride in letting our brides know that with all the decisions and timelines they face in preparation for their big day, photography and videograpraphy will not be one of them. We make the process stress-free!
How would you describe your personal style?
I love capturing raw and real moments. I’m the photographer who is keenly paying attention to all that is going on in the room and anticipating emotional and meaningful moments – and I am there to capture them. Ten years from now, the bride and groom will love to see all of the details from their wedding, but the images they will cherish the most are the genuine moments and emotion.
What does CoChic (comfortably chic) mean to you?
This is a particularly relevant question for me because I spend many hours on my feet running around when photographing a wedding and it is important that I am comfortable. On the other hand, I want to represent my brand well and don’t want to look sloppy. Comfort and style need not be mutually exclusive!
Anything else you’d like to share?
As a practicing attorney, I often felt unnerved by the competitive and aggressive environment. Since embarking on photography full time, I have been overjoyed by the number of groups and supportive associations I have been fortunate to be a part of. I am blown away by the talented individuals I’ve had the opportunity to work with (from artists, to florists to bakers). It is truly a blessing to watch small business owners who are passionate about their craft become successful!