Today we’d like to introduce you to Cortney Lancaster.
Cortney, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I guess I always grew up loving the arts. Despite being extremely timid and shy, I auditioned and stared in enough musicals throughout middle and high school that I became outgoing and LOVE the spot light, well… not so much, but still, I am so much more confident than back then. It was at that time, I started to learn how to sew with my grandmother and took an art class. It was a representative coming to my high school at The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising that changed my mind from “being on Broadway” to something creative. Because I hand my hand in many areas, I chose the most broad major, Visual Communications. From there, I have worked with high-end Fashion Stylists in Beverly Hills, managed in Retail, held many Graphic Design jobs, and manage social media accounts. I started planning and throwing private parties and events with my mom when I was young and after graduating college and starting my career, I decided to start doing this Event Planning thing on the side. To be honest, it takes time, money, and grit. You start by doing a lot for free if not, spending money, but every wedding, event and/or party is so worth it to me! I can’t wait for the day that I am a “stay at home” mom who runs a full-fledged event business!
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
My advice is to take your time but do not stop! That seems contradictory but it is not. What I mean is, if you stop you might not start again. I remember going straight into college 2 weeks after graduating high school because I knew that if I waited I might not go! I saw many people take breaks in between semesters, etc and then never come back! So, stay productive, do not let the days take advantage of you. But at the same time, don’t feel the pressure to have your days looks a certain way. If you don’t know exactly what you want to do yet, take general ed classes and get a part-time job. Try out some internships, I had 3 in 2 years of college! And even once I started my career in Graphic Design, I went through a season of working at Starbucks! I just needed something different and honestly to see if it was for me or not… it wasn’t. Now, my heart is split, between graphics and events. Sometimes, they work hand in hand, sometimes not, but I am SO glad I remained in motion, moving forward because I know I will always find success that way, even if it is different than I thought!
We’d love to hear more about your business.
My honesty! I have always been known for my honesty! And it might seem weird but I think it affects EVERYTHING I do. I like to help people create their best day ever, not take advantage of what they don’t know. So, if they have a specific budget, I find better ways to do things, make suggestions, etc. If they are unsure about something, I give my honest and professional opinion. In my opinion, my job is to make you look good, make the party the best, and leave you feeling taken care of not just check things off a to-do list.
Anyway, so if you haven’t gathered, I do EVENTS! I plan and coordinate parties, corporate events, and weddings. I am also a Graphic Designer, currently, for Foothills Christian Church and freelance, I am teaching myself web design, have done personal styling, social media, and marketing/advertising.
Do you recommend any apps, books or podcasts that have been helpful to you?
Oh, my gosh, yes! Not books… I don’t really read… except my bible. But I love Todd White podcasts. I also obviously use Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Lightroom CC, Slack, Dropbox, One Drive, Planning Center, Chase, Venmo/Squarecash, and EMAIL! – Ladies, go check out Jordan Lee Dooley on Instagram, you’ll thank me later!
- Website: cortneylancaster.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/crtvcort/
- Other: https://www.instagram.com/cortalan/
Shianna Cook Photography