Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Bonnie Joyce, Owner of Bonnie Joyce Creative Studio, located in Perth, ON, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Bonnie Joyce Creative Studio is a web design and photography studio in Perth, Ontario. As a web designer, my mission is to help small businesses improve their digital presence, designing websites that solidify their brands online and giving them tools that help streamline their workflow.

As a portrait and brand photographer, I help small business owners capture their unique personalities and dynamic energy within their workspace. My images serve as powerful digital assets that leave a lasting impression in online spaces.

Tell us about yourself

After the birth of my first child, I took a creative photography class with a friend on a whim, and photography immediately became a passion I could not ignore. Years later, after learning and growing, dabbling in portrait and product photography, I began getting requests for photoshoots and officially started taking on clients in 2019. At the time, I was working at a digital marketing agency, and I often had the opportunity to do headshots and product photography, creating customized ‘stock photos’ for my clients to complement their social media feeds and other marketing materials. Working closely with the company Wix, I became a Wix Partner and developed strong website design skills, creating countless websites for businesses in every industry.

In February 2023, I launched my freelance brand, Bonnie Joyce Creative Design. This has allowed me the flexibility to expand my photography business and take on exactly the kind of website projects that speak to me. Helping people overcome their fear of being in front of a camera and showing them their beautiful, authentic selves through my photography is a great joy and privilege. And helping small businesses shine online through the development of unique websites that reflect their brands is what motivates me every day.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is the journey that has led me to this point. Coming from an exceptionally creative family filled to the brim with artists of every kind, I have long searched for my niche, knowing deep in my heart that my work needs to be creative in order for me to come alive and feel fulfilled. Throughout my life, I’ve explored many forms of art: drawing and painting, copywriting, and design. Nothing felt quite right until I discovered photography, which I now understand to be my true craft.

The beauty of photography is that it is not just about seeing but also feeling. So much of the work is in creating a rapport with clients that allows them to relax into themselves and draws out their true character in front of the camera. I find this deeply satisfying. My website design work is really the cherry on top, allowing me to flex my design muscles and create useful, practical, but beautiful infrastructure for my clients that has a tangible impact on their businesses. Being able to do this deep, creative work full-time is a dream come true.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

The hardest thing about being a small business owner is all the juggling. Especially with a young family, carrying the role of ‘mom’ while managing many clients and scheduling photoshoots outside of work hours can be tricky. But leaning on my amazing network of friends and family makes it all possible.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Don’t stretch yourself thin by trying to do everything right from the get-go. Pick a couple of social media platforms to start building a presence and start from there. Don’t stretch yourself thin by trying to manage a dozen platforms, a blog, and a podcast on day one. Focus on building a sustainable foundation. Get a decent website made and invest in great search engine optimization. It doesn’t matter how fantastic your product is if no one can find you online.
  2. Don’t shy away from sharing a bit about who you are. There are enough shady, faceless online stores in the world - don’t be one of them. As a small business owner, you’re the product, the brand, and the appeal. Give people a sense of your personality and your passion for what you do, and you’ll attract the right customers.
  3. Treat your clients like gold. It all starts from there. As a small business owner, the most valuable thing my clients offer me is not the money at the end of a project but the glowing reviews and referrals that help me book my next job. Developing warm, friendly relationships with people will make doing your job a joy. People will want to work with you if you make it feel easy and unstressful. Treat people with respect and care, and it will always come back around.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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