GirlBoss Spotlight

October 31, 2018


It’s time for another GirlBoss Spotlight, ya’ll! I have loved hearing your feedback on these posts and I’m so excited that you guys are so excited about it! Let’s jump in and I’ll introduce you to my next GirlBoss, Emily Moore!

Emily is the GirlBoss behind her business, Emily Moore Boutique Photo Editing. She is not only a fabulous private editor (and mentor, online shop owner, and photographer), but she just so happens to be my favorite editor in the world… because she is MY editor!  :)  I’ve been working with Emily for 2 years now and I still believe that hiring a private photo editor was the best decision I ever made for my business. Emily has helped me get my life back over the past two years and I am so thankful for her.

I could tell you all the awesome things about Emily and everything that is going on with her business, but how I about I let her tell you? ;-) Ladies and gentleman, it is my pleasure to introduce you to Emily!


How old are you?

I just turned 28 years old!


Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Raleigh, NC, and I loved it so much, I decided to come back after college (after spending just 1 year in Portland, Oregon, that is)!


What is your business and who do you serve in your business?

I started Emily Moore Boutique Photo Editing about 3.5 years ago (March 2015). Back then, it was called Emily Smith Photography & Retouching, but I rebranded at the beginning of 2017 when I decided to focus solely on editing.

I primarily work with a small group of wedding photographers from around the country. I also provide educational resources, including mentoring, coaching, as well as other printable resources, for private photo editors around the world.


Tell me a little bit about how you started your business:

Oh where to begin! I’ll try to make this very long story short…I studied commercial photography in college, and during the fall of my senior year I took an interest in retouching. The following summer, I had the opportunity to do an internship at a huge company in Portland, Oregon called Splash Worldwide. At the end of the summer, I was offered a job and decided to come back after graduation in December of that year. I loved working there (seriously, my boss and coworkers were the BEST), but it was so far away from home. Deciding to move across the country was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make. I left my family, my friends, and my boyfriend (who is now my husband) behind, but I knew that it was going to be an opportunity I couldn’t pass up!

(Emily’s editing retouching work)


I worked there for a year before my husband proposed to me. Three months later, I packed my bags and moved home. It was definitely bittersweet, but I knew in my heart it was the right thing to do. I had no job opportunities back in NC, but I was determined to make something work. I decided to start my own business as a private editor.

Two weeks after I moved back home, I attended the Creative at Heart conference where I met Justin Marantz. I introduced myself and told him my story, and he told me they had been looking for an editor. He then asked if I would be interested in editing for them to see if we’d be a good fit. Um…would I be interested?! (Yes…the answer was yes…). Now, I work with 16 photographers around the country, and I’ve mentored editors from around the world. There are some wonderful days, and some difficult days, but being able to run this business and work for myself has been an incredible blessing!


Do you have a Mission Statement?

Sure do! “Our mission is to empower wedding photographers to take back their lives by providing high-quality, fast, and reliable editing services so they can provide their clients with the best possible experience.”


Is there anything unique about your business that people would be surprised to hear about?

I offer educational resources specifically for private photo editors, which are very difficult to find! When I was first starting out, there wasn’t any education for photo editors that I could purchase. There were no courses, or e-books, or workshops for editors. I had to figure so many things out for myself. Eventually, I did get to do a mentorship with someone and it was life changing. Now I offer these resources as well as mentorships and coaching sessions for editors because I don’t want anyone to have to struggle to start their business like I did.


As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I really wanted to be an OBGYN like my dad. I just loved the idea of helping people as a doctor, and honestly, I thought it would be cool to work with my dad. Alas my career as a doctor came to an end when I was about 13 years old. I almost fainted while helping my dad remove a mole from my brother’s hip, and I realized that I probably wouldn’t make a great doctor. Looking back, I am SO thankful I didn’t go down that path – I’ve always been creative! I know in my heart it never would have worked out.


Tell me a little bit about your family!

I’m married to a pretty amazing man, if I do say so myself. His name is Zach, and we met our senior year of college at Appalachian State University. We’ve been married for just over 2 years, and love to spend our evenings cooking dinner together. We currently have two dogs – Riley and (our newest family member) Koda! They are two adorable white fluff balls who love to sleep when they’re not wrestling around the living room. We don’t have any kids yet, but we are probably going to start a family within the next year or two.

(Photo Credit: Kate Overton Photography


What would your ideal evening/weekend would look like?

If we’re feeling like total homebodies (which honestly, is most of the time), we love to spend the evening cooking dinner together, hanging out, and talking about life. When the weather’s nice, we love to grill out on the back deck with a beer in hand. Afterwards, we’ll go for a walk around the neighborhood. I think those are usually my favorite evenings :)


If I asked your closest friends to describe you in 3 words, what words would they choose?

This one was hard…I actually had to ask some people for these because I had no idea! The answers I got were: loyal, thoughtful, genuine.


Do you have any hidden talents?

used to be able to turn my feet backwards, but I’m not sure I’m able to do that anymore (I wouldn’t even dare try it…it could only end poorly for me).


Summer or Winter?

Oooh Summer definitely. Lazy days at the lake or beach, cookouts, and evening walks with Zach – yes please!


Coffee or tea?

I’m a tea drinker – peppermint, lemon, and Tazo pumpkin spice tea are my favorites. I’m not huge on coffee, but if I need it, I get a vanilla latte.


Wildflowers or succulents?

Succulents are my favorite! Though I admit I can’t keep them around because I somehow manage to kill them. They can survive in the desert but not at my house… So now I just have realistic fake ones and they do the trick :)


What is one thing you are currently OBSESSED with?
Tiny houses! Zach and I are crazy about them and have plans to build one some day. In my spare time, I find myself watching videos of tiny house tours (check out livingbiginatinyhouse’s channel on YouTube) and obsessing over ideas of what I want ours to be like. It’s weird, I know, but I love them! We want to build one on an 8′ x 24′ trailer and put it up in Boone. Boone is in the mountains of North Carolina and it’s where we went to school. We just love the idea of having our own tiny house overlooking the Blue Ridge Parkway!


What is on your travel bucket list?

Wow, where to even begin! Zach and I are dying to go to so many places. Currently on our bucket list: New Zealand, Italy, Greece, Scotland, Ireland, Banff National Park, St. Lucia, and we’d love to go back to Australia someday.


If you could get coffee with anyone, dead or alive, who would you choose and why?

Hands down: Tom Hanks. He just seems like such a cool, down-to-earth guy. I’ve always admired him and would love to just talk to him about life. A few years ago when I saw that article about him photo bombing a couple’s wedding portraits in New York, I was super jealous! If that happened to me, I would have freaked out!


Are you currently working on any exciting projects you’d like to tell us about?

I just recently opened a shop that has resources for private photo editors and small business owners! From styled stock images to catalog tracking spreadsheets. With the shop launch also came the launch of my mentoring and coaching programs. Now, I’m working on some additional resources for the shop as well as a marketing course specifically for private photo editors!


Do you have any business role models/mentors? If so, what you admire about them?

YES! — Katelyn James is my role model. First of all, she’s an incredible business owner. She knows how to market herself and serve her clients well. She’s created a supportive and encouraging online community like I’ve never seen before, and I think that’s really something to admire. I’ve never walked away from an investment into her education that I didn’t feel was worth it. Overall, she truly is an amazing business owner and educator.

She’s also an incredible person. She is so sweet and genuine, and she really wants to help people in their business. I just love her heart. There’s always a fear that someone in her position is just in it to make money and they’re not really genuine, but that’s not the case with Katelyn. She and Michael are so incredibly sweet and I just can’t say enough good things about them.


What do you think is one of the biggest misconceptions about your industry/small business ownership?

The biggest misconception from my experience is definitely the idea that you have time to do whatever you want during the day. I used to think that until I realized that I couldn’t go to lunch with so-and-so because I have deadlines to make and promises to keep. Spending an hour at lunch means I have to spend an extra hour that evening to get something done. It’s just one person (me) working on catalogs. There’s no backup. If I don’t finish it, it doesn’t get done.


Can you share a little bit about a challenge you have faced in your business and how you overcame that challenge?

When I first started out, I struggled SO much. I was constantly afraid that if I didn’t email a client within 5 minutes of them emailing me, that my business was going to fail. I took my laptop everywhere, and would stop what I was doing just to answer emails. I took my computer to family gatherings, on vacation, over to friend’s house…you name the occasion and I was working. I was also stressed because I didn’t have very good workflows, and that really took a toll on both me and my business. My turnaround time was slow because of it, I had to work late in order to make deadlines, and I wasn’t sleeping well because I was so stressed.


What is the biggest lesson you learned from that challenge/experience?

I realized that it’s okay to not answer emails right away. I don’t expect people to email me back within 5 minutes, so why did I think others were expecting that of me? As long as you respond within 24-48 hours, you’re good! Realizing that it was ME who was putting this pressure on myself (and not my clients putting the pressure on me) made a huge difference. I was able to relax. By taking the stress and pressure off myself, I recovered physically, mentally, and I became a more productive person.

(Photo Credit: Candi Leonard Photography

What would you say is your biggest strength?

I guess my biggest strength is that I’m a very determined person. When I had no job prospects and quit my job back in Oregon cold turkey, I was determined to make something happen. Within 2 weeks, I already had my first client and by week 3 I had several more. It was difficult, and nerve-wracking, but a strong determination can make you do things you never thought you’d be able to do!


What is one accomplishment you are particularly proud of in your business?

I was really proud when I was able to make more from my business than I made working a 9-5 job at a “real” company. It was just another confirmation that I had made the right decision (even though I already knew I had) because I was making more and actually LIVING my life!


If you could rewind 10 years, what is one thing you would tell your younger self?

Don’t be afraid to chase your dreams and work hard for what you want. I wish I had known this sooner – I would have started my business YEARS before I did if I had someone told me this. I didn’t start my own business right away because nobody believed I could do it. Without that support, I was too afraid to try.


Where would you like to see yourself/your business in 5 years?

I would love to still be editing in 5 years, but probably for fewer clients. My husband, Zach, and I would like to start a family within the next couple of years, so I’d really like to work a little bit less in order to be home with the kids. Ideally, I’d work with a handful of editing clients, do more mentoring and coaching, and I’d love to really be able to do more courses for editors. That’s been a dream of mine for a while, so I’d love to see that happen in the next couple of years!


Do you have any advice for someone who is interested in starting their own business, perhaps even in the same field as you?

My advice would be to find a mentor to help you get started. Find someone in the field you want to go into and learn all you can from them. Even if it’s a huge monetary investment, it’s WORTH it! I wish I had something like that when I started. It would have saved me so many sleepless nights and countless hours of stress. Luckily 2 years into my business I was finally able to mentor with someone and it was the best investment I’ve ever made. If you’re in a bigger field (like photography), a workshop might be a good way to go. Just make sure you do your research and make sure it’s with someone who knows what they’re doing. If you’re unsure what workshop to attend, ask around and get recommendations!


Do you have any (business, inspirational) books, podcasts, Instagram accounts, etc. that you recommend?

I’m going to just have to list these out because there are so many!

Podcasts: The Goal Digger Podcast, The Creative Empire Podcast, Christy Wright’s Business Boutique Podcast, The Dave Ramsey Show (if you click here, you can read more about why I love each of these so much!).

Books: “The Best Yes” by Lysa Terkeurst, “Make it Happen” by Lara Casey, “I Am That Girl” by Alexis Jones, “Shattered” by Jessica Rasdall. These are just the few books I’ve read this year that were on my 2018 Reading List, but I have been inspired by all of them! (Definitely check out “The Best Yes” – it’s my favorite so far).

Instagram Accounts: Oh goodness, there are so many! But I think probably my favorites are: Maghon Taylor (@allshewrotenotes), The Everygirl (@theeverygirl_), Katelyn James (@katelynjames), and Erin Lindsey (@erinlindseyimages), of course :). All of these ladies are inspiring, encouraging, funny, and I feel like we could seriously be best friends :)


Where can people find you?






(Photo credit: Abby Waller Photography)

Thank you, Emily, for letting me interview you for this blog series! You are truly inspiring and I am so happy to introduce my followers to you! I just know they’ll love you as much as I do!


As always, if you guys have any GirlBosses who you think I should feature on this series, shoot me an email at!

I'd love to chat with you!

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destination wedding photographer, boutique photo editor, and coach to photographers

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