Developing Through the "Negatives" - Blog at R. Dione Foto
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Developing Through the “Negatives”

Developing Through the “Negatives”

Oh my goodness!  I can’t believe this is live, that I’ve finally made it to this point…!  Welcome to my blog 🙂 the place I’ve created as a platform to showcase my work, share my story and the stories of others, and hopefully inspire or spark something in those of you who decide to follow me along this journey.

But first, let me back up and share how I got to this point to begin with…(I promise this will be my longest post 😉 but seriously, there is some good stuff in here…it’s worth the read!)

On January 22nd 2014,  as I was working my corporate job from home, I received a mandatory call calendar invite.  These things happened frequently so I wasn’t too surprised.  When I joined the call, I was asked to announce myself, (which wasn’t normal)…and then I heard the voice of my department’s HR manager…(uh oh…what’s going on??)  Still confused, since there were numerous individuals on the call and in the meeting room,  I’m thinking to myself, this can’t be that bad with so many people, maybe there is a leadership announcement.

Next words I heard:

“Thank you all for joining this meeting, as you know the company has been focused on streamlining functions across the board, and it is with a heavy heart that I inform you that today will be your last day with us”…blah, blah, blah…

I tried to cry, made that ugly cry face and everything…but nothing happened…

I mean NOTHING! No tears, no fear, no anxiety, no regret, no sadness…nope nothing!  Instead all I felt was this heavy weight lift off of me followed by laughter, happiness, contentment, praise, and excitement.  That’s when I knew that I am exactly where I need to be.

My company was cool, my job was exciting (mostly from the outside looking in), but I was NOT excited about the work I was doing.

After getting off the call I prayed.  First thanking Him for what He had done and will do and then I asked for direction.  I had always dreamed about what it would be like to really have the time and the resources to focus in on my photography business and my craft, I just never knew I would be positioned to actually do it!!

So I got to work!

I laid the foundation of my business starting with the little things:  created an LLC, opened business accounts, hired an accountant and a lawyer, prayed, set up studio management systems, moved my website to a new platform, built my portfolio, prayed, found inspiration to redefine my brand, hired a graphic designer, designed a studio, and much more…but mostly I prayed and followed instructions.  It was as if business had taken off and I had more work and my days were longer than when I had a corporate job…and it felt AWESOME!!!!

Next I dove into my craft, I studied under extremely successful and talented photographers in each of the genres I shoot (portraits, weddings, corporate events, newborn).  I learned about their business models, learned from stories of mistakes they made, and exposed myself to new styles of photography.  Over time I was able to discover my own style, who I truly am as a photographer and break out of the mold of how I started and move to the next level.

These past few months have not only allowed me to develop as a photographer and business owner, but also as Rhonisha.

MeCrouching

Now I don’t want to paint this picture that everything was stardust and roses, because it most certainly has been anything but that!  There were times of uncertainty in what direction to take next, doubt in my own ability, fear of absolute and total failure, and loneliness in having to go through this on my own.  I made wise business decisions and frivolous business decisions, I made wise connections and distracting connections, I was wise with my time and wasted time.  But through all of it, ups – downs – in betweens, the Lord IS good!  He guides me back on track quickly.  When I’m on track I can know what direction to take, trust in HIS ability and not my own, and know that in Him there is NO failure.  I am made whole from unwise business decisions, I end distracting connections, find the discipline to use time wisely, and recognize all of the great support around me.

What makes this even better is that I knew it was coming…ok, maybe not all the details and certainly I did NOT expect anything to happen within the first 22 days of the year or within in the first 3 days of my 33rd year of life on earth, but I felt a change was on the horizon!

To give you a peek into what I saw, let me share a few excerpts from the personal notes I made leading up to when the first big change occurred ~ this is some good stuff so feel free to screen shot, copy/paste, whip out a pen and paper to take notes:

December 29, 2013 – “We Made It” by Bishop Alfred Owens:
  • Doors will open that were previously shut and doors will close that shouldn’t be open
  • This will be the year of divine potential to accomplish all we set our minds to do
January 5, 2014 – “I’m Still Optimistic About My Future” by Bishop Alfred Owens:
  • I will receive a new script for my life
  • Forget the past, be open to the God of change and surprise, and trust the God of the process
  • Process matters and how I trust Him through it matters
  • NO procrastination, get it done!
  • Seize the opportunity of 2014
January 9, 2014 – “It’s Not About the Water” by Dr. Jazz – New Year’s Revival
  • There are times when God calls us to leave the familiar to go to the unfamiliar
  • Storms are confirmation that I’m on my way somewhere
  • If He can speak to the storm inside of me, it doesn’t matter what is going on outside of me
  • Nothing worse than being where God was and not where He is
January 10, 2014 – “Ye Shall Not Go Empty” by T.D. Jakes – New Year’s Revival
  • Sometimes God’s strategy is to NOT to let me get what I planned because He wants to show Himself mighty through a crisis, then I’ll praise Him and not them
  • Go back to the place I failed and fight it with His strength instead of in my own strength
  • There will be events that cause trouble, but it is God’s design and I’m in a controlled environment
  • There is going to be a switch this year and the wealth of my enemies will finance my success
  • It’s going to bigger than I think it is
  • Don’t be my own Pharaoh, don’t allow fear to bind me
January 11, 2014 – T. D. Jakes – Leadership Workshop
  • My mind is the tool that will change my life and I cannot change it with an old mind
  • The mind is the steering wheel of my life
  • Becoming what others needed me to be has robbed me of becoming who I was designed by God to be
  • The door is open!
January 19, 2014 – “The Way In” by Bishop Alfred Owens – My 33rd Birthday
  • In 2014, I won’t have to knock because the door will already be open
  • Keep going after it, don’t give up too easy and don’t allow fear, doubt, and procrastination to hinder me
  • Dreams become reality when you put to work His strategy

So as you can see, I was bursting with confirmation that something was going to be different this year, but I still had no clue what to expect.  All I know, my eyes and ears were wide open and when it happened, I knew it!

The Lord is using photography as a tool to help me discover me and to see life from a new point of view.  About 4 months ago I felt a strong desire to share with others the things and people that have inspired and helped me along the way.  Of course whenever you start out on new endeavors that nasty voice in your head tells you all the reasons you can’t.  Here is what I heard:

“Why in the world would you start something else? You’re not a writer? People don’t care about what you have to say? What if you say something that someone else doesn’t agree with, what will they think of you? What if no one subscribes? Other bloggers have better stories, what makes yours so interesting? You’re not ready. You don’t have time. You don’t know how. Who are you anyway, you’re just a girl from Kalamazoo”

Here’s the thing with that nasty voice in your head, you prove it right when you listen and don’t do it.  You prove it wrong when you don’t listen and DO IT ANYWAY!!

Yes, it’s something else I’m doing – but who wants to be bored with nothing to do. No, I wasn’t a writer – but I am now. Some people may not care – but A LOT of people do. I may…no, I WILL say something someone else won’t agree with – but that has nothing to do with me.  Some people won’t choose to subscribe – but A LOT will 😉 Other bloggers do have great stories – but mine is pretty awesome and the people I’ll feature have pretty awesome stories too. No, I’m not ready – but start before you’re ready.  I don’t have a lot of time – but I can turn off Netflix and find more time. I don’t know how – but I can take a class and learn. I am from Kalamazoo – but that itself has always sparked some great conversations, LOL!

I’d be SO honored if you joined me along this journey by subscribing above!!

I’d LOVE to hear if this post has encouraged you, inspired you, or even just made you laugh, please feel free to leave a comment below.

25 Comments
  • Jacqueline Nathaniel
    Posted at 11:39h, 04 August Reply

    Your site is beautiful. I will follow you. Continue to be bless Soror.
    Jn

  • Sonya Sims
    Posted at 12:38h, 04 August Reply

    Soror Rhonisha, where is the “like button!” :-). I’m so proud of you and excited about all you will accomplish. Keep listening to God and continue letting him guide you. Success is indeed within your reach!

    Soror Sonya

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 23:11h, 04 August Reply

      LOL! Soror Sonya! I just added a “Like” button to show for my posts 🙂 Thanks a bunch!

  • Doogie :-)
    Posted at 13:01h, 04 August Reply

    Man oh man God is so awesome! You are truly a living testimony, and I’m ridiculously excited for you.

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 23:12h, 04 August Reply

      Doog!!! Man oh Man I’m so excited to see your comment! Thanks honey!

  • Vivian L. Smith
    Posted at 13:25h, 04 August Reply

    I am inspired by your faith journey and submit that as you continue your faith journey and your trust in, God doors will continue to be opened for you. Love, peace and God’s abundant blessings. vs

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 23:12h, 04 August Reply

      Soror Vivian, you inspire ME!!

  • Paula R. Bruner, Esq.
    Posted at 13:36h, 04 August Reply

    Dear Rhonisha,

    I am so glad to see how you are making room for your photographic gifts and letting God take you higher in His glory! I know that will excel while extolling his virtues. So be blessed in this new endeavor. BTW, I love the blog and enjoyed your testimonies. God really knows how to do His thing with His people!

  • Candace Claiborn
    Posted at 13:39h, 04 August Reply

    So proud of you! This is an inspiring story and I look forward to sharing in your journey 🙂 You Rock!!!

  • Á
    Posted at 14:29h, 04 August Reply

    I am soooooo proud of you! Your website is awesome. This blog is beautiful and your words are so authentic. I will be spreading the word, not only about your blog, but also about the beautiful work you create. Keep going. It can only get better from here. Nice!

  • Linda Gill Anderson
    Posted at 14:55h, 04 August Reply

    Dear Rhonisha

    Your talent explodes off the page with both your words and images on the site. You are following a destiny planned uniquely for you. And your faith will sustain you as well as encourage and light the way for others to follow. Blessings always, Soror Linda.

  • Brenda Hopson
    Posted at 15:22h, 04 August Reply

    Nisha I did not know that you were no longer at your corporate job, but it had crossed by mine that you were doing a lot more photography work than I had remembered. I wondered how you fit it all in. As your GodMother, please know that I am extremely proud of the young woman you have become. I wish I had been as astute at your age. I wish you continued success and I look forward to seeing you in October.

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 23:14h, 04 August Reply

      Oh, you have no idea how excited I am to see you!! Thanks #1 God Mother EVER!!

  • Edith Johnson
    Posted at 15:26h, 04 August Reply

    Oh Soror Rhonisha, it is so true, when one door closes, another door opens. The key is to be open to the new possibilities. You were there. What a testimony! I remember the months preceding my 33rd birthday. It was a pivotal time for me as well. So my dear, I am waiting and watching for more growth and announcements from you.

  • Vanessa Cacho
    Posted at 15:28h, 04 August Reply

    Wow!! What an awesome read! And it wasn’t long at all..at least it didn’t seem so. I was sad when I got to the end! ; ) I love to hear about God’s work in your life and can’t wait for your next post. I’m so happy for you!

  • Martina
    Posted at 18:52h, 04 August Reply

    Love it Nisha!! I’m so proud of you and happy to say I’ve been watching, praying and cheering for you on the sidelines. Your work is stunning and I have witnessed its growth over the years! Being an artist is hard work, but your dedication to your craft shows that it pays to hustle! This is just the beginning, LS, as exciting as this moment may be, much more will be on the way!!

    -Peace and Blessings

  • Janine
    Posted at 20:36h, 04 August Reply

    Beautiful. Congratulations on being yourself, fully authentic. Best of luck to you.

  • W.Willoughby
    Posted at 22:00h, 04 August Reply

    Step into your destiny!!!
    Simple elegance…..a beautiful portal into your journey. Yes, He will order your graceful steps.
    Life’s Sojourn,

  • Monica Freeman Lewis
    Posted at 22:49h, 04 August Reply

    Congratulations! Let HIM order your steps and you will surely reach your destination.

  • Uduak
    Posted at 08:46h, 05 August Reply

    I ABSOLUTELY love this! 🙂

  • Karleen Roy
    Posted at 11:41h, 07 August Reply

    PROUD PROUD PROUD!!!!

  • Pamela Payton
    Posted at 08:12h, 08 August Reply

    Wow Soror, I am so very proud of you and Blessed by you! I look forward to ready and seeing all that you are inspired to share.

  • Deedy Peters
    Posted at 02:04h, 20 August Reply

    Soror Rhonisha – your site and your post is amazing! It is so inspirational and uplifting. I can’t wait to follow you on your personal journey. Keep up the great work!

  • M. Arnold
    Posted at 08:50h, 02 September Reply

    I admire your work and dedication, Soror.

  • Stephanie Prevo
    Posted at 19:37h, 05 July Reply

    Good Evening,

    I truly enjoyed reading this!! As a NEW business owner, and just launching my business in May 2015, I’m am truly inspired by this story. I’m glad I moved in the direction God led me despite the procrastination for the past several years to move forward with my own business. Thanks for sharing, and thanks for the encouragement. May your business take you places you never thought you would go. Reading this has encouraged me to do the next thing I need to do. Create my new Blog!! Thanks!!!

    Mrs. Prevo

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