Jess Ratcliffe

The story portrait - a Case study

What challenge or problem were you trying to solve before the Story Portrait? How was it affecting you?

“The critical things that I struggled with were feeling any clarity around my story or feeling confident, I guess, in my own skin, which sounds massive, doesn’t it? But I feel like that represents what was really going on. I wasn’t entirely stepping into who I knew I could be, or had the potential to be.

I didn’t know what was interesting about my story, what parts to pull out and what to focus on, and it left me spinning. I needed someone’s help to shine a light on the personal brand story elements that would really resonate with people.

And on the photography front, I’d look at my website and not feel happy with the photos I would have taken myself; I didn’t feel like they represented me; it’s so much more than the fact that they were shoddy, selfie photos. It’s way more. I didn’t feel like they captured ME. I never felt happy with them. I was never confident sharing them, whether to pitch myself to speak at events or for Podcasts. I just never felt like they were, wow photos.”

Why did you choose the Story Portrait as the solution?

“I actually remember the exact moment I thought to myself, I’m gonna ask Phil if we can do a story portrait. I was sitting in the garden. And feeling really stuck and frustrated that I wasn’t stepping into my story; I was holding back. I remember looking at my website and thinking, this is shit.

I needed to figure out how to represent who I am and who I want to be. I knew the experience would be exactly what I needed, which is way more than a photo shoot – It’s so much deeper than that. And so that’s why I chose to go for it.

I wanted to explore my story with Phil rather than having to figure it out myself because I was so ‘in it’ – I knew he’d get me; I felt that this journey would genuinely capture my energy.”

What did you discover along the way?

“I discovered my confidence – honestly, our work of unfolding my story and peeling back the layers coupled with photographs that truly represent who I am and portray who I want to be. I left thinking, ‘This is me; this is what I stand for. Let’s bloody go for it!”

What benefits have you seen? How has this served your personal brand and your business?

“Visibility! I share the photos everywhere. Instagram, on my website, Linkedin, I use them for anything that I’m promoting – across the board, and I get a positive response from people; they see me in the shots. I feel confident sharing my story now; I know the benefit and feel how it lands with people, which does wonders for my personal brand and business!”