1. Please, can our readers get to know you? Briefly introduce yourself to our audience.
My name is James Alexander, and I’ve lived in Houston for almost seven years. I’ve been active with several organizations in the area, and I thoroughly enjoy volunteering.
Prior to Houston, I lived in Baton Rouge, LA, and before that, I grew up in Sontag, MS. I will sum this entire description up by saying that I am a social person which lends itself well to my photography.
2. What exactly are you into? What is your business all about?
I’m currently into photography and videography. My company captures personal moments, networking events, corporate functions and everything in between.
3. What inspired you to get started?
Honestly, my friends told me for years that I have an “eye” for photography. After a recent trip to Jamaica with several colleagues, I decided to take the plunge. I still remember standing in Best Buy to purchase my first piece of equipment. It was money well spent.
4. What is your educational background?
I have a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Finance from The University of Southern Mississippi and LSU, respectively.
5. What are your motivations?
I want to provide high-quality images and video for people to remember those wonderful moments in their lives. I’m also driven to use my platform to promote small businesses in the area with my photography services. Each day I’m motivated to learn more and provide exceptional service to my clients.
6. What advice do you have for other people who want to do this same thing?
Learn, learn, LEARN! I’ve spent countless hours – and still do so – watching YouTube videos about photography and videography. I also read a lot and seek out experts in this area to pick their brains.
If you accept that, you’ll always have something to learn, then I recommend you take the plunge and get started. You’ll need to do a lot of free work to build your portfolio, but if you’re consistent and provide excellent service, you’ll reap the benefits in time. Also, don’t forget your contracts!
7. Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
In five years I see myself moving into original content creation. Think vlogs, podcasts & YouTube videos.
8. Any present or future projects?
I’ve got some ideas, but I don’t want to reveal them prematurely. Keep an eye open.
9. What is the biggest challenge you’ve experienced in your business as a person of color?
Honestly, I haven’t experienced any challenges related to my color. I’m not suggesting that I’m immune to such adversity, but I haven’t encountered it for my business.
10. Are you married or single?
I am not married, but I like to think I’ll get married at some point.
11. How can we connect with you on social media?
You can follow me on Instagram at @yupyoungurbanpros and Twitter at @youngurbanpros1.
12. What is your greatest accomplishment?
At this point in life, I think taking the step to form my business is my greatest accomplishment. Stepping out of your comfort zone feels amazing.
13. As a person of color, what advice will you give someone starting their own business or career?
This is color-neutral advice: do your research, protect yourself, know your target demographic and market yourself accordingly.
You’re going to stumble a few times, but you’ll be that much smarter for it.