The Little Mermaid in Me

This isn’t an “oh poor me” story // this is meant to inspire & be a story of overcoming sad crazy life changing struggles

I have always wanted to live a free life. I am a free spirit but at the same time I am a “have to follow the rules” type of girl. I followed the “You have to go to College & get a Degree” order right after I graduated high school. I wasn’t a photography or art major when I started college, but the longer I was in school the less & less I realized I didn’t want to work a 9 to 5 building up someone else’s business & dream.

In the deep south of Jackson, Mississippi. between classes I would spend my spare time looking at blogs of other photographers + daydreaming of being them. I have always had a need & want to create, possibly stemming from my creative painter father. Late in my college years I did the unthinkable to some of my family + friends & switched to an art major of graphic design. From their I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design with a minor in photography. (Today I believe my college is not necessary at all to become who you want to become & I wish I would have saved myself the time & moneyicon smile The Little Mermaid in Me


I have had some major setbacks & constant doubts throughout my business building struggle. I lost my father two months after I officially started my business on my own. He had a heart attack at a pretty young age & in an instant was gone. I never got to say goodbye & actually we had a disagreement/argument the last time I saw him a few days earlier. He had called me to apologize but I never answered the phone. There was so much guilt + sadness within my life that I struggled & struggled hard to continue to create + have the happiness & perseverance I needed to build up my dream. I lost my favorite person in the whole world & the pain & guilt were making me lose my dream. I also had to shoot a wedding the day after he died ( pics turned out pretty good, but I could tell all the guests thought I would break any moment // I looked a hot mess)

The day after his funeral I traveled to Denmark to get away & spend time with one of my best friends Malene. While I was there we decided to take mermaid photos (the little mermaid story was written in Denmark). I could not believe how beautiful the scene was & how the sky opened up. When you see the pic you might think the sky + water was done in Photoshop but the only photoshop done was on her fin. I had created one of the most beautiful pictures I had ever created just days after losing my favorite person. Plus, I felt like the little mermaid & could relate to her in a lot of ways (she argued with her dad / She wanted to live a life that no one around her believed in )
Mermaid 1 The Little Mermaid in Me

Today I seem to be finally making the moves to where I want to be. My dad loved creating + I have to continue creating especially for people & their memories + loves. To me every moment with your loves are so important once you realize that death is real & can happen in an instant. My job has gotten a 100 times more important to me & I realized how short & precious life is.

I can’t say its all daisies + puppies– I have family members & friends who still doubt me & think I should be working a 9-5 “putting my degree to better use”. Sometimes the people closest to you can doubt you the most. They don’t see the behind the scenes look of where I’m at. They don’t see my business growing every day as I do. They don’t see that I can support myself living my own dream + being the conductor of my own life.

To the other women + guys struggling right now, people might not believe in you, you might not believe in yourself. Stop listening to the doubters & people who think they can live your life for you. If a people pleaser rule following girl like me can step out on the ledge then anyone can. Just go do the damn thing & live the life you want

Love, Ivy xoxox

July 1, 2015 - 3:07 pm

Jonathan - Ivy, I am so moved by your story! I definitely feel the loss of your father with you, but it’s so inspiring that you have forged ahead and grasped hold of life and all it has to offer, instead of the 9to5 grind. I’m sure you’re making him proud – you express a unique and beautiful creativity here! And you’re a great writer – looking forward to more.

July 1, 2015 - 2:18 am

Alyssa - I’m sorry to hear of your father’s passing, but what a beautiful story and photograph to accompany it. It is SO nice to hear that I’m not the only one who thinks college isn’t necessary. I, too, went to school for graphic design and photography but feel like it was a huge waste. I do have a lot of close people in my life thinking I need to work a 9-5 and putting my degree to use. But I just physically cannot. I need a creative outlet in my life and I can only imagine the happiness I will feel when I get to the point of shooting full time. Thank you for sharing your story and inspirational words!

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