"The process of connecting what you love to do with making a living takes time. You can go down some strange roads, but ultimately, if you keep your eye on the prize, you will find new doors opening to wonderful opportunities."
For 20 years, Nancy Jo Iacoi worked as a photo editor and director at magazines such as Rolling Stone and Esquire. In 2010, she left to co-found a photo agency, which she ran for four years before becoming a freelance consultant and editor for projects and publications including Condé Nast Traveler and The Atlantic. She travels, cooks, meditates and takes pictures.
My current path is staying open to all creative possibilities. I left a very successful career as Director of Photography at Esquire in 2007 to try my hand at being a photography agent. I started a small agency called Plum Reps with a partner in 2009 and learned a great deal about that part of the business. After 3 years I felt myself reevaluating my interest and drive in that business. I decided to leave and consult and edit on a freelance basis. I found that by allowing myself freedom to choose what kinds of projects excited me, I discovered my own creativity and drive towards my own projects.
Photo: Andrea Gentl.
I've been so fortunate to have many mentors! To name a couple: creative director Ann Kwong gave me my start in magazines in 1987 and taught me so much about creativity and how to navigate the world of publishing with honesty and integrity. Healer Abdi Assadi really cracked me open and helped me heal past trauma in order to know who I am and follow my truth.
Anywhere in nature! I feel instantly at peace when I am surrounded by natural beauty in all of its forms. I spend a couple of weeks during the summer in Maine. I've been going there since I was 20 years old and it is one of my most favorite places. I dream of going everywhere on this planet!
TRUST! The process of connecting what you love to do with making a living takes time. You can go down some strange roads, but ultimately, if you keep your eye on the prize, you will find new doors opening to wonderful opportunities. Trusting the process is essential. Make mistakes. Start again. But keep moving forward.
I am still endeavoring to find the perfect mix of work and creativity that will help and serve others. Cooking, health and healing, and taking pictures make me the happiest.
All images used with permission of Nancy Jo Iacoi.