We had the good fortune of connecting with Hannah Mayo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Hannah, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
Needing to balance work and life well was always a significant goal in my mind, because I have been a mother almost as long as I’ve been a business owner. Balance has looked a lot of different ways for me over the years, but it’s always been a bit more like a dance than static balance. Now as a mom of four children ages 3-12 and an entrepreneur, I think perhaps the biggest lesson for me has been asking for help where I need it. I’ve also had to continually let go of the idea of achieving perfect balance, or having it all together. I’ve learned to embrace the messy realness of life, and see the beauty in these years. It usually feels chaotic, but we make it work. It’s wonderful and joyful, gritty and authentic. Living this out and refusing to see the imperfection as a problem, has helped me to connect with my family clients who are also in the trenches of these intense years of raising kids and trying to balance it all. I know both the struggle and the wonder of it, so I can see and capture it in their lives, too.
|Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My passion for photography started early but I had very little focus or direction when starting out. I was willing to take pictures of basically anything, and I learned so much through a variety of experiences and many mistakes and hard knocks along the way. I was clueless about effectively running a business at first, and had to learn (often the hard way) as I went. Creatively, I learned that specializing in one area that makes my heart sing is so much stronger than being a “jack of all trades”. Capturing family relationships in a way that will remind people of the wonder and beauty that exists in their lives, and giving them a tangible way to grasp that through photographs, became that focus for me. As my work has evolved over time, I’ve become the photographer for families who want images with more depth than a typical posed portrait. I want them to feel something every time they look back at their pictures.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
This is fun! We would definitely have to go out for coffee several times: Composition Coffee, Pumphouse, Subculture. I’d take her to Grandview Public Market, and we’d browse records at Rust & Wax. And we’d definitely have to have a special dinner at Hullaballoo. We’d probably take a pottery class with my friend Lani at Avenue Pottery. We’d spend much of the time enjoying South Florida’s amazing natural areas though—Blowing Rocks preserve, DuBois Park, Juno Beach pier, kayaking at Riverbend Park and hiking at Grassy Waters preserve.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I mentioned that I’ve needed to learn to ask for help where I need it. My husband and his parents have been the source of most of that help, throughout my 13 years in photography. I’m so grateful for their support in helping to make it all work.