This post has been due for a short while now. As many of you know, myself (Tatum) and Vanessa Horning of VBH Photography joined forces last year and excitedly had been working towards opening our new studio space downtown Petoskey, MI. The two of use met a couple years ago and we had no idea that meeting would lead to the great friendship and business relationship that it did.
While our styles are different, our mutual respect for each others artistic vision and our passion for learning drew us together as we envisioned expanding our businesses. What better way to expand than to partner with someone you respect as an artist? Both of us excelling in our different specialities, we were able to offer support to the other in areas that we were less invested in. It was going to be fantastic.
We could not have been more excited about this new studio space. It was going to be a beautiful 5000 sqft space RIGHT downtown Petoskey that would accommodate both our natural light needs and our studio lighting needs. The space was going to be customized exactly how we wanted! Working with the architects and interior designers, this was going to be amazing. We spent almost an entire year working out our vision for our new business and making plans for this vision. We couldn’t wait to get started!
But all that glitters is not gold, and before we knew it our June 1 possession date had come and gone and construction had never even started on our space. We were promised August and then again, August came and it went and no construction had started. We were then told November and it was at this time that Vanessa and I decided it was time for us to consider that fact that maybe this wasn’t going to be the dream space we had planned. We ended up terminating our lease at this time. And this meant we were at square one again.
This disappointment came to us hard as we realized our entire season had been lost in this waiting game and it felt very much like the rug had been pulled out from under us. We had to regroup and figure out what this meant for our new partnership.
We spent the next couple of months looking for spaces, realizing there was not much available that would accommodate our vision that wouldn’t cost us and arm and a leg and that would be a reasonable distance for both of us to drive.
Soon the sinking reality set in that we may have to put our plans on the back burner and pursue other opportunities. It was a sad realization for both us as we spent so much time developing our new business and growing closer as friends and colleagues.
There was no falling out between us at all and we both still very much respect each other and plan to continue collaborating on future projects and events.
Vanessa has taken an opportunity to join the Life Roots Family & Birth Collective in their new space, which is a great fit for her since she is part of the collective! We’re very excited for all of them in their new venture together and glad Vanessa has found somewhere to land. It’s going to be a great fit for her and we couldn’t be happier for her.
Myself and Caitlyn will be working out of my home for the time being. We have converted a portion of my home into a studio space which is going to be fantastic for the time being. Very excited to have somewhere to meet with clients and we will even be able to do sessions in the space. We’re really looking forward to finishing the remodel on this space.
All in all, we are disappointed our initial plans were laid aside, but we have faith that everything works out for a reason and we know that our relationships will remain strong as we figure out our next steps.
Thank you everyone for your loving words and inquiries. We really appreciate all the support for this venture we were starting and we both value your continued support as we keep on grinding and doing what we love best: Making amazing images for you and your loved ones.
All the best,
Tatum McWatters & Vanessa Horning
Tatum Photo and Design | VBH Photography