Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in photography but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Francine Mittenthal, owner of Lillybelle Rose Photography, located in Oak Brook, IL, USA.

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

Lillybelle Rose Photography is an award-winning newborn photography studio servicing clients from Chicago, IL, and its surrounding suburbs.

Tell us about yourself

As a mom of three incredible daughters, I know how quickly the newborn stage passes by and how difficult it is to recall precious newborn details. Creating images of this magical time for my clients is an honor and a joy!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Proud to have been in business for over thirteen years, won many industry awards, and, best of all, have a five-star online review rating with both Google and Yelp. Clients enjoy their experience as much as their gallery, and that is always my goal.

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

Every business owner will struggle with something along their journey, and for me, it is turning down clients who will not be an ideal fit. Some clients come to me asking me to capture a style that is night and day from my body of work. Client satisfaction is my main goal, so turning down the booking is best for both parties - but it is never easy!

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

There are dozens of tips I'd give photographers who are starting out, but as a general rule for entrepreneurs:

  1. Start off legally. Get your Tax ID number. Get registered/licensed. Check area ordinances.
  2. Education, education, education. Know your area of expertise inside and out!
  3. Be professional AND approachable. Make sure all communication is professional and friendly.

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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