In an effort to strike up a conversation about education and independent businesses I would like to introduce my first Q+A guests, the owner of Rose & Dale Photo Co., Nina Young and her boyfriend Dez, a talented creative and founder of the label Pig Food Records.
Located in Upstate New York, Rose & Dale Photo Co. is a mobile photo booth and lounge, housed in a vintage 1963 Airstream Overlander that has been completely renovated from the inside out. The Airstream is a classically beautiful space that is available for hire for weddings, private parties, festivals and any other event where a photobooth is needed.
I’m excited to hear more about Nina’s unique airstream and it’s travels so let’s get right into it!
Tell me a little bit about why you started this business:
I from a young age, I have wanted to be in business for myself, it was always just a matter of what type of business. I had been toying around with the idea of a photobooth company, and literally had a lightbulb moment and the concept of Rose & Dale Photo Co. was born. When considering the business, it was extremely appealing that R&D was a mobile company that could be used anywhere. Traveling has always been top of the list for me , and Dan travels for music so this just seemed to make total sense.
How long has Rose and dale photo Co been an idea of yours?
It has been a plan since the beginning of 2014. Around March of 2014, I started working on the business plan and cash flow projections and once that was complete, I started the process of asking a bank for a business loan. Almost exactly one year later, I was approved for the loan. I had taken a personal loan to purchase the Airstream from someone in LA and when the business load came in, renovations began.
In what way is it most important to support Nina and her lifestyle as an independent business owner?
Whatever way she needs whenever she needs it. If I can do it for her, I will.
You seem to have completely different gigs going on right now. How do you guys inspire each other?
We like a lot of the same things. Design, presentation, communication, good people, good food, good drinks. I'm just really passionate about rap, and she's an actual grown up.
Nina, What advice do you have for anyone who wants to do what you're doing.
As far as running a photobooth business, there are a million out there. Making yours stand above the rest is important.
Dez, what advice do you have for any guy who has a lady friend who is an aspiring business owner?
Take your time. Make something you're proud of. Learn from your mistakes. Not too much diary. Hydrate. Seriously.
Rose and Dale Photo co. has a clear inspiration from travel and adventure. If you could list places you want to go with your business where would you go?
I absolutely want to bring the Airstream back out west. The RV culture there is huge so there is a very large support system for it. I am fascinated with the desert and would love to be able to take a work trip for a month or two to spend time discovering. When I drove to pick up, and tow back the Airstream, we took the Southern route, so revisiting New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Arizona is high on the list. Also, I really want to take the Airstream and be a part of the New Orleans Jazz Fest. I was fortunate enough to go years ago, and think it would be so much fun to be able to be a part of it with the business.
Do you have any non business trips planned?
Finland. Costa Rica.
What are some challenges you have had to overcome with bootstrapping your airstream trailer photo business?
There have been a number of them! Managing new stresses while maintaining another full-time job, relationship, financial responsibility, and some sort of a social life has been a constant challenge. I have gotten much better at it, but I still do struggle sometimes with keeping it all together. Also, with no prior rv towing experience, I have had to learn everything about towing and powering the Airstream, which in the beginning was super intimidating. Driving cross country with the Airstream was my crash course and I was terrified. But just like anything, with a little courage and practice, it becomes second nature. I have learned that new experiences will always bring a little discomfort and intimidation, but one step at a time and I seem to get through it. I also have been extremely lucky to have my support system though. I would not have been able to do any of this without them. Dan said it above, whatever I need that he can do, he does, and I am so lucky to have that support.
To book the airstream or find out more about Rose and Dale Photo co. visit http://www.roseanddalephotoco.com/
And be sure to check out Dan’s music at https://pigfoodrecords.bandcamp.com