Catalina Jean

Owner / Photographer / SEO-funologist - SEO is FUN & Catalina Jean Photography

I'm a wedding photographer based in Portland, Oregon who is completely obsessed with SEO. My goal is to boil down the seemingly difficult concepts and make it easy (and dare I say, fun) for small businesses owners to finally understand what the heck SEO even is and what to do to snag those coveted Page 1 rankings.

What inspired you to start your business?

When I was young, I remember always having a camera in my hand. I would shot landscapes and such but they were personally always a little boring to me. Much later in life I got a camera again and started shooting some family photography. That peaked my interest and I found I love photographing people. I shot my first wedding and I absolutely hooked. It was challenging yet so much fun. That was my very first business. I then got hooked on learning SEO and it became the main marketing avenue for my photography business, and then became a business itself!

What is something you would say to someone who is struggling in their first few years of business? Is there something you struggled with and learned from in those first few years?

Learning to say no. I was so afraid in the first few years to turn down any job or opportunity. This quickly led to burn out and working on things I wasn't passionate about. I really started meditating on the fact of how valuable our time really is. It's our greatest asset. How we use our time on a daily, even hourly basis, can make or break a small business. In the last couple years I only work an hour at a time (I set timers) then stop and ask myself: "what am I working on right now? Is it the most important task I could be doing? Am I being focused or working on multiple things in circles?". Making it a habit to take this assessment several times through the work day gives me a chance to get back on track and use my time most effectively. It is OK to say no. It is OK to take a break to reflect. I've learned I'm a far more effective and happy worker because of both.

What hobbies, causes, or activities are you passionate about aside from your work?

Virtual Reality! I have an Oculus Rift but just bought the Quest. I play almost everyday and introduce every one of my friends to it. I've always been a bit of a sci-fi nerd so I've been imagining VR since I was young. Now to have something sci-fi in my home is such a nerdy joy. :)

Image Credit: Headshot: Grace Burt,, Action Shot: The Humble Lion,, @thehumblelion_