We had the good fortune of connecting with Will Overby and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Will, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
My thought process in starting my Photography business was to be able to turn my passion into profit. Also to have something that I can build a legacy with and pass on to my future children. What influenced this drive for me was being at my old job for 10 years working on moving up the corporate ladder. In my time working toward these goals and becoming close with a few people higher up and came to find out that they were unhappy in their profession. I was unhappy as well doing the same routine day in and day out. Don’t get me wrong I’ve also talked to others who absolutely loved what they were doing and when I talked numbers to them things did not add up for the opportunities that I was striving for. It was when I had a year of 2 life-threatening experiences. The first experience was having a perforated ulcer and a few months later I was involved in a motorcycle accident. During my recovery, Something told me to turn my focus on investing in myself. That was when WNO Photography was actually started in 2013.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a photographer that specializes in beauty photography. What sets me apart from others is that I fell in love with the technicality of lighting. For me lighting is the foundation of what I do as a photographer. Lighting gives images dimension and texture. When you see my work the 3 words that I strive for to bring it all together is simple,crisp,clean. What excites me about creating in the beauty photography space is the fact that I get to work in a team environment. Theres is something amazing that happens when you get a team together and you all are working toward the same vision. My journey has had it’s up and downs in the start and I am still building up to where I want to be. What I can say is to stay persistent and count your small wins along the way. Nothing worth having comes easy is what I believe and you have to continue to strive to reach that level of where you want to be. Some of the small wins i’ve had in my journey include being invited to networking events. Networking events have been a major factor in my success thus far. Others have been shooting campaigns for up and coming brands, and being published in beauty editorial magazines. These wins are some of my stepping stones and also can aid to your success. One major lessons I have learned about being a photographer is that you must learn the business side of being a photographer. This does not just apply to photographers, it applies to all creatives. When I started I was just creating and putting work out there and took what ever people were willing to offer me. It wasn’t until I started running my photography services as a business, I began to see the true value of my services and how I am able to solve the needs of others in their business. What do I want the world to know about myself and WNO Photography is that as a company we are inspired by passion and driven by faith. It is my passion that keeps me grounded in what I do but my faith is what keeps me going. Faith is having that mental finish line picture of where you want to be at all times. Even when its not in front of you just yet. Your journey has already been planed for you. In your journey you will have ups and downs and with faith you will be able to look at the downs as growth opportunities. So always keep learning and moving forward.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
To be honest I really don’t go out much these days due to the fact that I am laser-focused on building my business so I am not familiar with the latest fun places to hang out. I would probably have to hire a few tour guides lol. But If I have to answer the question, on day one I would take them to Point Dume in Malibu and Neptunes Net (A restaurant that was featured in the first Fast n Furious Movie), On day two, we would hike to the Hollywood sign, and grab some bbq from The Rib Nest in Gardena, CA
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to shout out a couple of individuals who saw potential in me and helped to guide me in my journey. Kathy Haddad and Arden Alger. Both are photography instructors at Chaffey Community College in Rancho Cucamonga, Ca. Without their direction, I wouldn’t have thought about the bigger picture in photography which was to go into the commercial side of the career. Their mentorship led me to reach for bigger goals by obtaining my BFA in Photography and Imaging at Art Center College of design. With hard work under that school’s rigorous curriculum, I was able to graduate within two years with honors. This was a big accomplishment for me. I also have a few teachers/mentors from Art center as well that I have kept in contact with. Charlie Holland who was my marketing instructor and Everard Williams who helped me with putting my portfolio together. Both have been very valuable to me and I cherish their coaching even after completing my education. Since then I have worked on a few campaigns for beauty companies as well as editorials for beauty magazines. This is all due to the individuals who saw the light in me and helped me to keep pushing forward.
1st pic -Talent: Elani Instagram: @lalaarice Makeup: Cherrelle Instagram: @beauty_by_cherrelle 2nd pic- Talent: Baylee- Instagram: @bayleecurran Makeup: Michelle Instagram; @monartmakeup.mich 3rd pic- Talent: Acacia- Instagram: @acaciaajasmine Makeup: Michelle Instagram; @monartmakeup.mich 4th pic – Talent: Kiana- Instagram: @kianathemodel