We had the good fortune of connecting with Raffi Mahan and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Raffi, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Ever since I was a little kid I have always known I wanted to be an entrepreneur but it wasn’t until I became a mom that I truly felt like it was now or never. I absolutely hated having to leave my kids to go to work for hours and hours and when I would come home I would feel so drained that I felt like I wasn’t being the best I could be for them. I was also craving that sense of freedom and ownership of my time. I decided I was done missing out on my children’s lives to work day in and day out towards someone else’s dreams when I could be working towards my own dreams and building a legacy for my children while pursuing a passion of mine. Also, both my parents have been entrepreneurs my entire life, so from a very young age I got to see firsthand the importance (and perks) of hard work and always finding solutions when times get tough. I want the same for my children.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a family and motherhood portrait photographer. I love serving mothers that, like me, want to capture the essence of their child in a portrait they can cherish for the rest of their life (and their children and grandchildren’s lives). I know I know, that sounds super cliché coming from a photographer but really thats why most family photographers do what we do. I understand how fleeting time is when you have children, and how quickly they start changing and growing into their own. Those little chubby baby hands wont stay that cute forever and that breaks every mama’s heart. And while I encourage every parent to live in the moment and not be living life always through their phone camera, I totally understand the desire and need of capturing your family’s story and milestones in still images that you can look back on so you can relive those moments over and over again.

Before becoming a photographer, I worked as a nanny for a family of multiple children from newborns to toddlers for many years. I have ALWAYS loved working with small children and connecting with them comes very natural to me. I think this is something that sets me apart when it comes to photographing families especially young families because young children require a little more TLC during the portrait session. That’s where my nanny background comes handy, I am definitely not afraid to act silly to get genuine giggles and even a good ol’ belly laugh. Heck I’ll even crack jokes with dad because we all know he doesn’t really want to be getting his picture taken either. I also love spending some extra time photographing mamas with their babies because let’s face it (unless your husband is a photographer) more often than not it is us moms that don’t get to be in the pictures with our children. Mainly because we are the ones that are pulling out our phone to take a picture when we see a sweet moment happening, but trust me, when your kids are older they will wish you had been in the picture too! At the end of the day my goal is to love and serve my clients with beautiful portraits they are proud of and that capture that tender mama (and daddy) love, not only for you to enjoy but for your children when they grow up.

I started my photography business right in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic in Sept. 2020 and since then my business has slowly but steadily grown enough for me to be able to quit my previous job and dive head first, full speed into my photography career. I have learned A TON along the way and firmly believe that my business wouldn’t be what it is right now if I hadn’t invested in quality education from the very beginning. I love to learn, always have, always will, but ESPECIALLY when it is something that I am passionate about as I am with photography. I have invested thousands of dollars on not only photography but also business education because I feel like you never truly stop learning, and if you do, you stop growing.
Some of my amazing mentors and educators are Katie Lamb, Caroline Tran, Brittany Bruce, Rebecca Rice, Angie McPherson, just to name a few of my faves.
I believe in community over competition and that where there is a will, there is a way!

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.
Well as cheesy as it may sound my best friend is my mom, especially now that I don’t get to see her as much ☹️ my parents live in Mexico, where I am originally from and only come visit about twice a year before the pandemic, now barely once a year if I’m lucky. If she came to visit for a week she would obviously be just as happy staying in getting to enjoy her grandkids, but if we were to go out we would probably do a lot of shopping at Northpark Center (our favorite mother-daughter activity), also can’t visit without going to the Dallas Arboretum, that place is gorgeous year round and my photographer heart can’t resist a good photo op especially when there is flowers involved. At some point we would grab dinner at Marty B’s in Flower Mound for some delicious brisket quesadillas and margaritas, yum!
At the end of the day, getting to spend time with family is my happy place.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to dedicate my shoutout to my whole family. Truly everyone from my parents to my husband Taylor, my in-laws, my friends have all been so supportive of my business from the very beginning. Every time I would have any doubts of my talent or abilities (imposter syndrome is the worst!) all of them were always there to encourage me and scare that self doubt away. My mom loves to say “if the things that are worth it were easy, every one would be doing them”. I certainly got a lot of my entrepreneurial spirit from her, she always knows just the right thing to say to get me back on track.

Website: www.raffimahanphoto.com

Instagram: www.instagram.com/raffimahanphoto

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RaffiMahanPhotography

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