The path that led me to create Horizon Found

Photography

Nicole Hill

by

I didn’t grow up dreaming of becoming a fashion photographer. When I was little, my dream was to be an actress, probably not for the reasons you think. I wanted to live another life, I wanted to be anybody but myself. I grew up genuinely believing something was wrong with me. I didn’t know why kids didn’t like me or why I looked the way I did. At school I was constantly bullied, I’d go home crying, blasting music in my room praying that I could be someone else. I remember making a promise to myself in 4th grade never to let anyone feel the way I felt. I promised to always speak up if I thought someone needed it and to always strive to lift people up and never bring them down.

#iwokeuplikethis

Growing up, I experienced hardships that kept me from ever really knowing how to love and accept myself. Over the years, I’ve had to work extremely hard at it, but through photography, I’ve found myself. I am at a place now where I can honestly say I love and accept myself as I am, flaws and all. Everyone goes through hard times, we can choose to become the victim, or we can rise above and find the purpose behind it. We’ll never be able to change what has happened to us, but we can change the way that we view our past experiences. I feel so blessed that every painful experience in my life has helped to put me on this path, and for that, I wouldn’t change a thing. 

When I found photography, I had no idea where it would take me. I just knew I needed a change, and since it was the one thing in my life that made sense, I couldn’t let it go. It made me feel alive, and that was something I’d never experienced before. After graduating from photography school, I moved to LA. I had no clients, money, connections, contacts, or even the slightest clue what to do next. I had all the technical photography knowledge anyone could ever dream of but absolutely no business skills. I remember thinking, how am I going to survive?

I would work from day to night, trying to build my portfolio, reaching out to my dream clients. I’d make just enough money doing model tests to pay for my rent with barely enough left over to survive off 99cent bean soup and free sandwich cards. Those days were really hard, I cried… a lot. All I wanted was to feel comfortable and not have to worry about money, and of course, to be able to eat something besides beans. (haha) Through all the hardships, trial and error I never gave up. I knew I was made for more, I knew that if I didn’t stop at some point, it would have to work out, and it did. I built systems that worked. I started booking big jobs, I started traveling the world, making good money, getting repeat clients, and little by little, my life completely changed. 

Photography has led me to some of the most amazing experiences of my life. It has brought me to a place that I would never have even dreamed of being. It’s given me a life of love, joy, beauty, creativity, and freedom. Now, after a decade of shooting in the industry, feeling comfortable and at peace with where I am, my 4th-grade self decided to pop back into my head. “Remember how you promised yourself always to speak up if someone needed it. Remember how you promised to lift people up.” And that’s when the idea for Horizon Found came to be. I know there are photographers out there who might not know the next steps to take, maybe they need someone to lift them up, I know I did. Horizon Found is everything I wish I had. 

I know what it feels like to think you’re alone, to believe you are unloved and unworthy of your dreams. I know what it feels like to have a passion, skill, and drive, but no clue what the next step is. It would be my honor to help show you the next step. I want you to know you’re not alone, and that your unique story and vision is meant to be shared with the world. It’s why you were put here.

There is enough room in this industry for every one of us. I want to share everything I’ve learned over the past 10 years with you so you will have no fear diving straight into every goal you thought was once unreachable.

If I could do it, you can too, and the best part is, we can do it together.

I’ll always be here to lift you up. 

ARE YOU READY?

  1. Bonnie says:

    Wow. Your words touched my soul. Thank you for your courage, generosity, and beautiful spirit in providing this amazing new community for us. I wish wonderful things for your journey ahead. With gratitude…

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meet the photographer

HI! I'M NICOLE HILL

I've spent the last decade of my life traveling the world as a fashion photographer and I created Horizon Found to give you everything I wish I had when I was starting my career. Here you'll find community, inspiration, and education - to help guide you down the path towards building the photography business of your dreams. My dream is to use this platform to help build a supportive environment in the photography industry.

I'M HERE FOR YOU!

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The Photographer's Path is currently closed. Get on the waitlist to get early access and special bonuses not offered anywhere else!