We had the good fortune of connecting with Mikayla Edgeworth and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mikayla, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
After graduating college with a degree in Media and TV Production, I was eager to start working in my field. I soonly realized that the unspoken journey of post-graduate life was a lot harder to maneuver than expected. Between navigating trying to find work, being rejected, to landing what I thought was my dream job, I realized that I was putting too much reliance on my worth into the hands of people who either wouldn’t give me a chance or couldn’t see the value and talents in me that I know I possess. I realized that I must take matters into my own hands, create what I wanted to see, and B.O.M ( Bet On Myself). That’s when I created my photography and videography business Through M.E Lens which encompasses all the skill sets I’ve learned over the years and in school. I was able to create a lane for myself in which I could thrive the most but moreover use my gifts to help propel others in the process. To me, that’s a huge win. I am doing what I love and am passionate about, I am valued, and I get to use my God-given gifts to help others.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Through M.E Lens provides high-quality branding and lifestyle photography and video content to individuals, professionals, and or cooperate brands. What sets us apart from others is that we understand the stress of business owners in identifying professional branding support that aligns with their creative direction for their brand, mission, and vision. Through M.E Lens is here to bridge that gap as we are a one-stop-shop. We provide the initial service ( photography and video). But we focus on taking photography that meets the branding and marketing needs of the client. Moreover, providing creative direction and expertise on creating content for multiple branding uses while relieving the stresses that may come with planning a brand shoot on your own.
Being a first-time business owner, it was important for me to learn from those who were doing better than me and achieving the success and goals I wanted. I believe this mindset has played a huge role in where I am today business-wise. I actively sought mentorship and counseling and I ask questions. My thought process is if I can learn from my mentors’ journey and the mistakes that they made it will help me from duplicating them and to know what to look out for. In a way, it’s like having a blueprint that you can use as you see fit. It is so easy to make costly mistakes as a first-time business owner. But when you have community and mentors that can guide you along the way why not take the wisdom even if that means you may have to pay for it. Yes, I enrolled in my share of photography coaching programs. This leads me to the biggest lesson I’ve learned thus far. You have to be willing to invest in yourself and your dream however that may look for you. How do you expect people to believe and spend money on your dream if you aren’t willing to do so?
There will be challenges in anything you do in life. I think your mindset and perspective shapes how you handle the roadblocks that come. My faith plays a huge role in overcoming these challenges. When I’m faced with obstacles I try to change my perspective, focus on what I can control at the moment, and have faith that God will handle the rest; moreover, understand the season he has me. Sometimes that obstacle is really a hidden blessing.
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.
Ok, so we will have a jam-packed week for sure. To start we heading over to Duo Houston for some great coffee! Then we will make our way to Discovery Green Park and enjoy the scenery. The next day head over to the Seismique museum and take all the selfies in the world. Grab some lunch at the best place to get authentic Mexican food, Tacos Dona Lena. Then we end the week by heading to church at Rehab City Centre.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I will be remiss and arrogant to say that my success was done all on my own cause that is not the case at all. First and foremost I give all my credit to God for all the success I have achieved thus far. I’ve learned when you decide to walk in his purpose, your path becomes clearer in understanding the role you play.
On top of this, I come from an amazing family that supports me and my dreams. They have always encouraged and taught me at a young age that I am capable of accomplishing anything I put my mind to. The foundation for me started at home and then progress outwardly. I have been fortunate enough to be involved and exposed to many activities and groups growing up. There are two that stand out to me. My first would be the performing arts program, Colours, that I was fortunate to be in my adolescent years. It was there, my passion and love for the Arts formed. I began to understand how much the arts play in impacting culture, emotion, and perspective to individuals. It’s where I learned my voice, my creativity, and my imagination can move and inspire.
The second is my high school basketball program, Largo Lady Lions Basketball (L3) located in Prince George’s County, MD. Playing basketball under the coaching of Ayana Ball-Ward, I learned so much. Coach Ball not only taught me the game but she had an amazing way of merging the lessons we learn on the court into life skills that can be used outside the gym. It was through her that I learned the value of disciple, setting goals, and grinding hard to achieve them (as we called it the “hunting season.”) It was through her I adopted my favorite quote and pretty much what I live by today, “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.” This was important to me because it normalized the steps to success for me. Often times we see successful people and think it is so far out of reach to become like them. But really it’s not, it takes the most practical step which is doing the work.
I am grateful for my family and the groups mentioned. I thank you publicly for everything you did for me and all you do for others.
Additional Portfolio Image Credit – Mikayla Edgeworth, Through M.E Lens Personal Photo ImageCredit- Kayla Elisse Photography