3 Girls Photography
Ask most business owners how they describe success and they’re likely to tell you it is measured in revenues or exceeding sales projections. Jen Basford, of “3 Girls Photography,” defines success another way.
“Success to me is putting beautiful images into the hands of my clients and seeing the looks on their faces that words can’t describe,” said Basford. “I feel that is the most successful I can ever be. It’s a feeling that nothing compares to.”
Basford discovered her passion for photography while living in Washington D.C. with her husband, Jim. Having graduated with an MBA from OU, she worked as a computer consultant for five years. However, after a visit from her cousin, who was beginning a career as a photographer, Basford began to study photography. Shortly thereafter she became a student of the New York Institute of Photography and it became her passion.
“I have an extreme passion for what I do and I live my life that way as well. I have a tremendous amount of energy and fun in everything I do,” said Basford. “I LOVE to laugh,” she added.
Basford sees the job of capturing someone’s memories as an honor and a gift. She feels extremely blessed when clients entrust her with their images. “It is one of the greatest feelings in the world.”
The business has built a unique image in the community with high-quality photography that is both beautiful and artistic. Basford prides herself on getting to know her clients and creating an “experience” of portraiture that is fun, exciting and memorable.
“We want to make sure that you [our clients] leave our studio having had an amazing time,” she said. “Life is not made up of days, it is made up of moments.”
Basford stays up to date with the latest technology and trends in photography. For example, when clients return to view images they see them projected “life-size” on a state-of-the-art system. She also stays at the forefront of the hottest photography trends in all areas of her business, including senior portraiture, which she notes has evolved from traditional to more high fashion.
“Seniors are all about the ‘now’ and senior portraits are about identifying who they are as individuals and using the session to capture that. The experience of your senior portrait is once-in-a-lifetime, and we make sure that each senior looks amazing and unique – just like they are.”
Her events manager, Angela Duncan, is working hard on several upcoming events that “3 Girls Photography” will be hosting this year. “Lights. Camera. Fashion!” is a fashion show geared toward high school students and will be held May 3 at Will Rogers Theater. It will showcase several of the hottest fashion trends of the upcoming season. The event will feature a local band, “So Far Good,” and models from all the area high schools. Other upcoming events include a Girl’s Night Out and Limited Edition holiday events.
Basford, and her husband and co-owner, spend as much time as business allows working on their main hobby: playing with their three girls–Riley, Reagan, and Reese. The girls are her favorite models, and the inspiration for the name of her business, “3 Girl’s Photography.”
To view Basford’s work, visit www.3girlsphotography.com or call 609-4174 to book your portrait experience.
About two years ago, Bill Smith told his good friend, Don Connelly of Crosstimber Koi, about a decision he had made. “You must have rocks in your head,” was Connelly’s response when Smith told him that he and his wife, MaryBeth, had settled into unplanned early retirements at ages fifty-one and forty-nine. (Otherwise known as a midlife crisis).
“This was very unexpected of them,” said daughter, Tiffany Cargill. “These two plan every minute of every day.”
Within two weeks of their conversation and with assistance from realtor friends, Larry and Susan Lide of Matrix Commercial Realty, the Smiths found twelve acres of grass on a very steep hill off I-35, just south of Waterloo Road. The twelve acres soon became “Edmond Rock.”
When MaryBeth spoke with her parents about their possible venture, they laughed and shared that earlier in the week her mother had “dreamed” they opened a rock yard. That’s when the Smiths realized their new business was meant to be.
There have been other signs reinforcing their decision to open Edmond Rock. One such incident occurred when a contractor came by needing to match the stone on a twenty-year-old building. They found a stone that appeared to match. When the semi-truck driver delivered the rock it was discovered that not only was it the correct stone, it came from the same quarry. It was even the same driver that had delivered the stone to the site twenty years earlier.
“Being a new business, getting our first match-up job, that made us feel great,” said MaryBeth. “This success story is something we are proud of.”
With 1200+ tons of building and landscape stone and the focus on personal service, the success stories are mounting up. In fact, in the last ten months, Smith said they have dozens of match-ups and success stories under their belt.
“We excel at customer service,” said MaryBeth. “When customers come onto the yard we offer them the opportunity to drive around in their vehicle & browse or a ride on our golf cart with one of us to give [them] ideas and suggestions.” Customers are offered much more than a cup of coffee. They get help and advice for their projects. “Customers say we’re helpful and we give them lots of ideas.”
The Smiths are not novice business owners. They own Smithbuilt Enterprises, Smithbuilt Residential, The Five Hundred Group, Smithbuilt Financial and Megaloceros (a deer feed company). In addition MaryBeth spent seventeen years with Waddell & Reed while Bill was with National Loan Investors for eighteen years.
While their diverse business backgrounds likely proved beneficial in many aspects of their venture, there are some parts of the business that have come naturally, especially for Bill. One thing he discovered is how much he loves to play with all the big equipment.
The Edmond Rock staff includes general manager, Michael Clemenz; commercial salesman, Dustin Bringham; yard hand and delivery driver, Jake Wigley; and part-time yard hand, Travis Brown. The Smiths’ daughter, Tiffany Cargill, works as office manager and handles marketing for the company. Wyatt Cargill, the Smith’s nineteen-month-old grandson, also comes to work everyday with his mom. Millie and Logan, two yellow labs, are the official greeters at Edmond Rock.
As devoted large game hunters and nature enthusiasts, Bill and MaryBeth have traveled the world, experiencing many exciting and heart-pounding adventures. On one trip they rode the rapids of the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe. They climbed the Southern Alps on another. But out of all their great travel experiences, they consider playing with rocks and spending time with daughters, Tiffany Cargill and Christel Coon and their families to be the greatest adventures of all.
To contact Edmond Rock, call 359-ROCK. The Smiths also invite potential customers to stop by the yard on the Southwest corner of I-35 & Waterloo to visit them in person and to get landscaping ideas.