why a bird and a cage?

As I pondered what I wanted my new new look to be, I ended up needing to go back and look at where I have come from. I am making a logo that will symbolize my photography work, but I’m also branding myself as the artist of the images I create. I really wanted it to have deep meaning to me. So here’s the story behind my new branding:

Through out my life I have allowed myself to feel trapped by what I thought other people wanted me to be.

The child in me once said, “I want to be an artist.” However, the voice I listened to was the that of the people who said, “Be a teacher.”

When I realized that wasn’t the path I was meant to do, I listened to another voice that said, “Sell this stuff that you’re not passionate about.” Though that path lead me to learn many things and meet so many wonderful people, I still felt very trapped. I was stuck in a cage of what I thought I was supposed to be doing, not what my heart truly wanted to do.

Then I experienced the deepest loss I have ever felt. I lost my husband to cancer. He was full of passion and talent, but as hard as he fought to live, he had to leave all of that behind. From that point on, I knew that I needed to fill the days I have left with what my heart is meant to do.

The times in my life when I felt trapped is where the cage in my logo came from. It’s not a big ugly cage; because that cage, or those experiences where I felt trapped, taught me many things about the world and myself. So it’s not a bad thing at all, considering how much I learned from those experiences.

The bird? Yep, I’m that bird, who is free from the cage and ready to fly.

What else does the cage and the bird mean? Well, I suppose it’s up for anyone’s translation but I also wanted it to portray the idea that my photography is outside of the box. (Too bad “thinking outside of the cage” isn’t a popular phrase…) My clients are that happy little bird and I’m photographing them, not just in front of the confinements of a backdrop, but out in the world, flying free.

Logoblog

Hope you like the new look. There will be more tweaks and changes to come. I LOVE the timing of my new branding coming just a few days before my first shoot and the first day of spring. After a very dark winter, spring is finally here and I’m out of hibernation!

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  • March 17, 2009 - 8:38 pm

    Jen Mears - Whoohooo! It looks great and I like it a lot – very Betsyish! Love ya girl!

  • March 17, 2009 - 8:38 pm

    bobbi - i love every single thing about it… EVERYTHING!!!!!!!!

  • March 17, 2009 - 8:43 pm

    Betsy - Thanks guys! It’s been a long time coming, your support means SOOO much!!!

    LOVE,

    Bets

  • March 17, 2009 - 8:44 pm

    Annie - Love it, especially the concept behind it!!! = )

  • March 17, 2009 - 8:46 pm

    Mandy - I adore it! Its so clever, and emotionally attached to you.

  • March 17, 2009 - 8:54 pm

    Clary - Gasp!! It is perfect and all your hard work really paid off…and then I read after admiring and now I’m crying.

  • March 17, 2009 - 8:57 pm

    Katie Beverley - Betsy! It is perfect! LOVE it all ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 17, 2009 - 9:11 pm

    jess - so amazing good job!

  • March 17, 2009 - 9:12 pm

    Lynsey T - I love the meaning, the depth, the heart behind it. It’s beautiful!

  • March 17, 2009 - 9:13 pm

    jess - You must shoot my brother and I some time, I would love that and shane and I another time. We didn’t get to do any pictures together since we live in NOLA now ๐Ÿ™ but someday I would like to. <3

  • March 17, 2009 - 9:15 pm

    Maya Laurent - Oh girl you hit it! This so speaks volumes about you!

  • March 17, 2009 - 9:37 pm

    Lindsay - Oh Bets, its wonderful!!! =)

  • March 17, 2009 - 9:49 pm

    Katie - Love it! I really enjoy checking out your blog – yep, I’m addicted. Great job on the branding ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:21 pm

    Captured By Jess - You’re free as a bird Betsy! Dream big! (That little guy kinda reminds me of your french fry print. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:24 pm

    Amanda - It is AWESOME and though I don’t know you personally, fits with everything I’ve seen and read on your blog. Upbeat, down to earth, and REAL, just wonderful. =) Congrats Betsy!

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:32 pm

    Michelle - Two thumbs up!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Great logo.

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:35 pm

    jodie - OH I love LOVE it! The color is perfect and I love the design! I can’t believe you did that yourself! AMAZING!

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:41 pm

    Anne Woehnker - Hi 3 Kings!:) I have been looking forward to seeing your new look and logo and I LOVE IT! The meaning behind your choosing the bird and cage is so sweet. Everything you do seems to come from the heart with alot of deep thought and personal experience. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and life with us. You are truly an inspiration, as well as an amazing artist!

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:46 pm

    Kristin Goetterman - This is it. You did it.

  • March 17, 2009 - 10:52 pm

    searah - I think it is so so so so cute and couldnt be any more creative!

  • March 17, 2009 - 11:12 pm

    Betsy - I’ve only commented once before as ‘the other Betsy’ but this post makes me want to sing! (Yes, pun intended…as in sing like a bird ๐Ÿ™‚ I check your blog frequently and this post spoke to me. I am pursuing photography with wonderment and passion, and loving every moment of what I am learning thus far. Your logo is the BEST! And it’s pretty neat to see such a familiar name in a cool style! Since I am a voracious reader and quote/literature lover, I couldn’t help but think of this quote after reading your story: “Birds sing after a storm; why shouldn’t people feel as free to delight in whatever remains to them?” -Rose Kennedy, mother to John F. Kennedy. I wish you and yours all the best! -The other Betsy ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 17, 2009 - 11:31 pm

    Rich - I think it’s perfect, even without the explanation…I’m really excited for you!

  • March 17, 2009 - 11:33 pm

    jess@studio3z - PERFECTO!!! love your story. (we really ARE secret soul sisters) you were so smart to take you time and do it right.

  • March 18, 2009 - 12:11 am

    Erin - Betsy, I seriously. seriously. LOVE IT! It’s really cute and whimsical- fun and creative!! Love the split screen Metta Audio/BKP too!

  • March 18, 2009 - 12:38 am

    nikki - love the bird and cage – seems just perfect

    what I don’t like is the type… hate the font you choose for your name. doesn’t fit your personality at all…

    try different types of typography!

  • March 18, 2009 - 1:08 am

    Red - it’s perfect!!! I ADORE it!!! it’s simply gorgeous and so perfect. Congratulations!

  • March 18, 2009 - 1:43 am

    Joe Kennedy - Awesome logo, for sure. I’m diggin’ it.

  • March 18, 2009 - 1:51 am

    bobbi - I jsut came back to adore your logo for the five-millionth time today when I saw Nikki’s comment ๐Ÿ™‚ Hi Nikki! Hmmm… “hate the font” That’s pretty extreme! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m quite sure it’s actually a hand written drawing… that very much matches her personality ๐Ÿ˜‰ ANNNND, I happen to love it. ๐Ÿ™‚ Just my 2ยข ๐Ÿ˜€

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:08 am

    Lisette Price - Cute!!! And I love it even more after reading your reason for why you have a bird and a cage as your branding. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:09 am

    leah stafford - I love it! Very cheerful ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:14 am

    Sarah Holland - I’ve been anxiously awaiting your new branding and oh my gosh!! Love love love it! And I love that you have the bird as your separator between posts. Super cute!

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:17 am

    mel - perfect… (everyone else started their comment like that, i didnt want to feel left out!).. though i really liked the caption bubble! :-O but this is really cool. the pattern in the background looks dope with it too! the bird is perfect, esp on the lil ledge! i like the font. we are huge fans of all lowercase. maybe you couldnt tell by how i dont know how to capitalize anymore when writing. hA. congrats. so excited!

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:18 am

    :-P. Brynne - LOVE IT!!!

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:20 am

    lauren c. - openField. - YAY for you!! it’s looks great!! so happy for you : )

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:27 am

    Annie - I love it! I’ve been DYING to finally see it, and it is wonderful! (And ditto Bobbi on the snarky comment. Whatev, get a life!)

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:34 am

    Shelly Valentine - I LOVE LOVE LOVE the new look!!! SO MUCH FUN!!! ADORABLE! It makes your amazing pictures look even more amazing!

  • March 18, 2009 - 3:23 am

    Lohren Deeg - Love your new logo, Betsy!! love it!!!!

  • March 18, 2009 - 3:28 am

    julieleak - LOVE the new logo!!! you don’t know me but i follow your blog and “met” you through cassie beer. seriously…soooooo ca-yute!

  • March 18, 2009 - 3:54 am

    Abra - I’ll admit that I didn’t get the meaning behind the logo at first, maybe because my head is inordinately full of snot, sorry for the visual, but once I read your post the lightbulb went off over my head and it made MORE than perfect sense. LOVING it. Glad you are finally free of what other people think you should do. Just don’t lose focus and remember it’s up to us what kind of cage we make for ourself…and sometimes it’s nice to come home to a nice cozy one. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • March 18, 2009 - 4:29 am

    Gail - It’s been so great to see this logo develop Bets. It probably feels like 3 years ago we sat at lunch with Bobbi and talked about what defined you and this definitely is it! Love the concept. BRAVO, BRAVO ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 18, 2009 - 10:27 am

    April - Betsy – Your story and the new imagine are PERFECT! You are a true inspiration to many. Keep rockin’ on!

  • March 18, 2009 - 10:30 am

    Brooke - Wow, it looks great! Congrats on branding yourself with something that is meaningful to you…you’ll really live and breathe your business b/c it IS you! Anyways, I’m a big fan of your site even though this is my first post (I was a Bobbi bride and found you through her site). Good luck this season…I’m sure your schedule is going to be PACKED!

  • March 18, 2009 - 12:29 pm

    ida in qc - The logo is beautiful, but with your story it becomes even more perfect! I love the image of you as a little bird… I look forward to seeing photos from the first shooting of the year!

  • March 18, 2009 - 1:20 pm

    sara - oh man Betsy, I extra big puffy heart love it. The symbolism is incredibly sweet and I love knowing how meaningful it is to you! Your story is touching and something I think a lot of artists have gone through…you clearly are one strong and talented individual. Want to know my favorite part? No? I am going to tell you anyways, the little birdie on the line above every post…swoon. Great job on everything, right down the the font! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:37 pm

    Betsy - THANK YOU SOOOOOO MUCH for alll the amazing emails (even the one who said she hated it. Though I think you hurt my designer’s feelings more than anything!) and support. I am feeling VERY loved as I start the 2009 season!!

    LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!

  • March 18, 2009 - 2:56 pm

    Ryan - I bet your designer has pretty thick skin and understands that you cannot please em all (though 44/45 aint bad). I suppose he is absolutely thrilled that you have something you are proud of.

  • March 18, 2009 - 3:15 pm

    Betsy - Ha Ryan, I should have added, “Ticked off Bobbi more than anything!!” : )

    It’s all gooooood stuff. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 18, 2009 - 3:16 pm

    Joanne - What a really heartwarming story. I think it’s cool you put so much thought into your new logo and branding. You will have much success!

    P.S. I really love reading your blog!

  • March 18, 2009 - 3:59 pm

    Lindsay Hanas - LOVE the new look!!! I completely get it. I’m sure it wasn’t easy finalizing everything but you got it right!

  • March 18, 2009 - 4:15 pm

    Cassie - I know you have gotten tons of comments already, but I LOVE it. It is so perfect and so you in a hundred ways. Love, love, love it!

  • March 18, 2009 - 4:26 pm
  • March 18, 2009 - 4:49 pm

    Janelle Roberts - LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!! So nice to have another little birdie out there in the world. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 18, 2009 - 5:03 pm

    Leandra - Wow, I love it! Seriously, very creative, and from what I can tell from the blog, very YOU! It must feel so good to finally have this part of your business identity settled!

  • March 18, 2009 - 5:06 pm

    Leandra - Ahhh! And i just realized you have a little favicon of the bird. Cute!

  • March 18, 2009 - 5:46 pm

    MOM - You ROCK my world. A great big happy face to ya…I am so very proud, when you express your talents in so many ways. I love you.

  • March 18, 2009 - 6:52 pm

    Alyssa - I love it!! its adorable! &&& I love the font…

  • March 18, 2009 - 8:28 pm

    Barb - I always knew you could fly. Your gift is helping others to do the same.

  • March 19, 2009 - 2:35 am

    nikki - wow – jump down my throat!!!

    that was not at all meant to be a snarky comment but more like the truth. gosh – i didn’t think the font (and if it’s her handwriting then more power to her) matched the personality I get from her company/blog. I’ve never met her in person nor have I ever seen her handwriting – but from knowing her, her story, her family, etc… from the informaton given on this blog – this font did not match that!

    holy crap – down girls, down…

  • March 19, 2009 - 2:49 am

    bobbi - it’s not what we say… it’s how we say it ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 19, 2009 - 3:58 am

    Elijah - Great look Betsy!! You’ve always got the edge on things =) Its fresh and inspiring!

  • March 19, 2009 - 5:03 am

    Melody Carpenter - The new look is amazing and I love how you incorporated your life into it! Makes me love it all the more…yay for you!

  • March 19, 2009 - 12:38 pm

    jess@studio3z - hey Bets! I know I already told you I love the new look, but I wanted to tell you that personally, I LOVE your font (a lot actually!!) and knowing you I think it fits your personality perfectly. Seems this is the place for opinions, so I thought I would share mine.

  • March 19, 2009 - 1:05 pm

    Rachael - I absolutely Love it! I have been struggling for a while to brand myself as well! I finally found something too that I feel like it screams me! I really think this is soooo you and an expression of your work as a photographer!!! Love it!

  • March 19, 2009 - 3:18 pm

    Sarah - Betsy, I feel like it’s been forever coming! I visit your blog almost daily to see what you’re up to and see if your logo had been released… and I like it! I like the hint of yellow, the symbolism and true to you meaning behind it, the perch the bird is on, the uniqueness of it. Congrats!! Can’t wait to see how your journey unfolds.

  • March 19, 2009 - 9:52 pm

    Michael Wachniak - I love it! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • March 20, 2009 - 6:16 pm

    Amy from Cali - Betsy~ I LOVE it! All of it!. I have always felt there was an inner-artist in me. But I have yet to find my outlet. Hopefully one day….. Congrats on the branding. Still wishing you were here in Cali so my sis and I could hire you to shoot our families. It’s a wonderful place to visit in the 3 season out of the year (winters can be a little drab in northern cal). if you ever plan a vacation out here, please don’t forget to call me!

  • March 21, 2009 - 6:50 am

    Brandi - I love it Betsy and your story is an inspiration. <3 You are beautiful!!

  • March 21, 2009 - 3:58 pm

    Emma - Thank you for sharing something so personal. I think its important for our work to reflect who we are. Logo’s should reflect that. Will everyone understand… no… should we let that get us down or change our minds no.

    I think your logo is perfect!

  • March 22, 2009 - 6:19 pm

    Gloria - Great site … Love the logo!

  • March 22, 2009 - 8:00 pm

    Amy - I love it even more now that I heard the story. Such a delightful and refreshing look at creating a logo.

  • March 22, 2009 - 9:16 pm

    April Cochran-Smith - I absolutely LOVE it! It’s perfect ๐Ÿ™‚ How exciting that I’m the 70th commenter, by the way? Go you!

  • March 23, 2009 - 3:42 am

    Tira J - Hello Betsy! I found your blog through OSP. How beautiful the story is behind your new branding, just as beautiful as you. I know that each and every client that is in front of your camera is going to be immensely touched by you and your story. Thank you for sharing a part of you and your family with the world.

  • March 23, 2009 - 11:40 am

    Pamela Telgenhoff - Great logo…great story…great pictures!!! I will check back often. Congrats on finding “you”!

  • March 23, 2009 - 2:34 pm

    Velia - You managed to make me cry, I absolutely love your logo. I think the meaning behind it is what makes it extra special.

  • March 25, 2009 - 3:11 pm

    ohana photographers - david & kimi - what an incredible story behind it. love it!

  • March 25, 2009 - 7:33 pm

    Airika Pope - It fits you and your journey perfectly!

  • March 30, 2009 - 10:10 pm

    Nudrat S - Awweeee….so sweet! You go girl!

  • April 1, 2009 - 3:25 am

    Amy Cupp - I absolutely love it… Brought tears to my eyes

  • April 8, 2009 - 3:18 am

    Kelly - Wow. I’m speechless. Amazing story. Super amazing.

  • April 19, 2009 - 6:55 pm

    Faye Hoot - Wow! Extremely beautiful design! Fabulous Fantastic Font! Luv it!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • May 1, 2009 - 6:51 pm

    Abby - Incredible story. I’m glad that you sought after what you love. Lovely logo.

  • August 7, 2009 - 11:37 am

    Maribeth - We have similar stories…like you, I lost my first husband to cancer at a young age. Changes your perspective about everything. Like you, I am pursuing my photography dream. I am so grateful that I can help my children remember their Dad through photography. Catch the moments, hold on to them forever. Best of luck to you!

  • November 17, 2009 - 12:24 pm

    Kim - Wow! Your story and meaning behind your brand is so awesome!! I realize you posted this forever ago, but I just found your website and blog, and I’m so impressed.

  • November 22, 2009 - 2:22 pm

    Tammy - Your story brought tears to my eyes. Your words, “… feel trapped by what I thought other people wanted me to be” really resonated with me! Being an artist, you are sometimes lucky if you have 2 pennies to rub together & it’s so easy to be swayed to jump into the pond & get a ‘secure’ job. But at the end of the day, life is about finding your passion and living your life’s path. It’s so great to hear such an inspirational story and portraying that in your ‘identity’.

  • December 16, 2009 - 11:56 pm

    Amber Fox - You brought tears to my eyes girl. I am in the process of branding actually, so this post caught my eye. But your story is heart breaking and beautiful. Praise God that he has brought you through this and you feel free as a bird. Wow.

  • January 11, 2010 - 1:50 pm

    jenny - I love your design and it’s really cool that you have a real meaning behind it..that makes it even better!

    your work is great!

  • February 5, 2010 - 11:08 am

    Leigh Kinne - it’s perfect. Did you design it yourself? If not, who did you use? As always, thank you for sharing yourself with us. We love it. ๐Ÿ™‚ Leigh Kinne.

  • May 9, 2011 - 10:13 am

    Liz Bedwell - Betsy, I found your site thru a comment you posted to Jessica Strickalnd’s blog recently. I love that you shared the story behind your branding. I’m hoping to start my own business someday soon and I’ve been asking myself a lot lately, “How did he or she come up with their logo/brand? What’s the meaning behind all that?” Your story is such a touching and inspirational story and I see a lot of myself in it. Thanks. ๐Ÿ™‚

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