Hello and welcome back to another installment of the Shine Interview Series, in which you’ll meet some incredible freelancers, creators, and all-around inspirational people in order to learn their habits, routines, organization tips, and time management strategies!
(Wow, I feel like a TV announcer saying that - please don’t unfollow for the cheesiness of that sentence!)
New to this series? Here’s the run-down:
The Shine Interview Series will introduce you to six inspirational go-getters.
On the blog, you’ll learn about the habits and routines that help them to stay at their most productive. What is their morning routine? How do they keep their calendar organized? What is one habit that makes them successful?
In the newsletter, we’ll delve deeper into the other side of the coin - the “off” time that is so necessary for productivity. How do they relax, take breaks, and find inspiration?
Finally, on my Instagram Stories, you’ll get to know them in a rapid fire round of questions like: Favorite TV show? Most used app? A book everyone should read?
Anyways, onto today’s interview! If you are subscribed to my newsletter (and if you’re not, head to the bottom of the post ASAP, because exclusive interview questions that aren’t shared anywhere else are sent out to e-mail subscribers *wink wink* ), you may remember my “Do What You Think You Can’t” article, in which I talked about how I overcame my fear and hesitation regarding reaching out to a certain photographer whom I admired immensely but I worried would be too busy to even read my email.
Well, this is her! I guess now you see that my worries were unfounded, because I was super lucky and privileged to have the opportunity to interview Karen Rosalie, photographer and creative director at Rosalie Agency :)
I first learned about Karen through an interview on the Lavendaire Lifestyle podcast on which she and Aileen discussed pursuing a creative career without a back-up plan. As some of my readers may know, I just graduated high school, and so I couldn’t have stumbled upon that podcast episode at a more perfect time. It opened my eyes to a whole new realm of possibilities in the field of photography, and I was immediately taken aback by Karen’s dedication to her craft.
I followed her on Instagram and did a little bit of perusing (AKA casual stalking) and was so inspired by her journey through making a name for herself in the photography world and creating her very own photography agency. From her carefully organized shooting plans (she recently shared a peek into a 30-page PDF she put together for a shoot), to before and afters of the painstakingly detailed retouching process, Karen’s unwavering work ethic shines through in everything she does.
I’m beyond honored to be sharing this interview, so without further ado, here is Karen Rosalie!
How do you manage your calendar?
I live by Google Calendar! Two tabs I always have open is my gmail and my calendar. If I have shoots, meetings or calls, I always send a calendar invite. I have notifications set up 10 minutes prior to the event so that’s super helpful for not letting things slip through the cracks when I’m having a busy day. I also love that Google Calendar lets you put in details - that helps me not forget things like what number to dial in to, addresses, notes to mention etc.
What is your system for task management?
I use stickies on my macbook. Each stickie is color coordinated and I have a stickie for each shoot so I can write down what stage each shoot is in. It’s also sorted by date and on each shoot stickie I’ll keep track of the production stage-- whether or not the models have been casted, if I need edits or selects, things like that!
What is one habit that makes you successful?
I’m constantly learning and thinking about ways I can improve my business. Whether it’s watching videos on youtube about how to improve my retouching skills or thinking about ways to make my shoots more efficient, I’m constantly in a state of forward thinking. I think the ability to not get stuck in the present but to know that you’re in a constant state of growth is what will help give you strength to keep moving forward.
Walk us through your morning routine.
I wake up usually around 7-7:30am (my goal is to get up at 6am every morning eventually!), shower, and get dressed. Depending on if I have a client in the studio that day, I will put on makeup. (I try to give my skin a break when I can but I always wear SPF.) If my fiancé has made coffee I’ll drink a cup and talk to him about what I have to do for the day. If a client is coming to the studio, I might skip that and pick up a coffee on my walk to the studio. I like to be in the studio at least an hour earlier (call time is usually at 9am) so I can prep and have an hour to just listen to music and answer emails before shooting.
Are there certain times of day you find you are most productive?
I love working at night because I don’t have emails to answer! It’s when I feel the most creative. I think that stems from late night edits in my early 20s. But generally I really try to make the most out of my time 9-5 in the studio. If I’m not shooting, then I’m editing or answering emails and coordinating shoots. There’s never really a lull for me because there’s always something I can do for the business.
Do you have any weekly routines that help you to stay organized?
Definitely showing up before 9am to the studio. My happy place is drinking coffee, listening to music and getting a quick edit/jumpstart on my emails in before the day starts.
Do you set goals? How do you keep your goals in sight?
I started to set goals and write down my dreams when I was in 5th grade and it’d been a habit of mine ever since. Every year I make new year resolutions and in my early 20s I started to write down where I want to be when I was 25 and 30. I really love this practice because it’s fun to see how your goals will change every year as you learn more about yourself. For example, I thought I would be married by 23 and have kids by 25 when I was 21 but now that I’m 29, I definitely want to focus on my career and have kids later. There’s still so much more I want to accomplish!
My day-to-day goals are written in my stickies, but my long term bigger goals are either written down in a notebook or just in my mind and I’m constantly thinking about how I can take steps to get closer to it. When you do that, you’ll start to see opportunities in your day to day that you can take to get you closer to your goal.
What is one piece of advice you would share for someone trying to find balance and organization?
It really helps me to write everything down and make to-do lists. Sometimes tasks can seem very overwhelming, but I find lists to be a very pragmatic and simple way to approach it. Not to mention the gratification when you can cross things off the list!
My favorite part of this interview was Karen’s routine of regularly showing up early to her studio so that she can start her day feeling centered and on top of things! As someone working on being earlier (or at the very least, on-time, haha) to my appointments, this motivates me and reminds my why I want to make punctuality a habit.
To learn more about where Karen finds inspiration and motivation, and how she balances her work time with breaks and relaxation, find part 2 of this interview available exclusively in the Bliss Bean newsletter! If you’re a current subscriber, you’ll find it in your inbox. And if you’re not subscribed (yet!), no worries, just use the form below and you’ll get the interview as soon as you’re signed up.
To take full advantage of all of the inspiration that will be shared in the next few weeks, don’t forget to:
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Follow along on Instagram to find the interviewees’ answers to my rapid fire questions in @theblissbean Instagram Stories.
Thank you so much for reading, and have an amazing rest of your day.