The Art of the Entrepreneur:
If you have ever attended an event on Capitol Hill or K Street you may be familiar with Anthony Bolognese. In all reality, he probably took your picture as the event photographer. Anthony is the purveyor of Capitol Hill Photo, partner of Capitol Hill Clothiers, entrepreneur, and an example of the many creative personalities working hard to perfect their craft in the Nation’s Capitol.
The textbook definition of an “entrepreneur” is a person who organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risks in order to do so. Anthony is an entrepreneur. On his website appears a great piece of advice for anyone trying to make a career in the DMV, “Get off your ass”. Furthermore for entrepreneurs, “the biggest misconception of being self-employed is that there’s less work involved.” Working to create a brand, managing social media outlets, marketing your skills, and staying competitive as an option for people seeking services can be time-consuming and even a struggle.
I asked Anthony what being an entrepreneur means to him and his response sheds light on the variety of ways can take a passion project on and still pay the rent. “I can’t speak for all types of entrepreneurs, because every industry demands a different type of effort from day to day. For a photographer and clothier, it’s a lot of cold calling to find new clients, a lot of following up with your past clients and asking for referrals, and more than anything, it’s a lot of networking. I actually wrote a blog post on my own site about ways I stay motivated to work, and that pretty decently encompasses what most of my days look like when I’m not actively on a shoot or at a fitting. It’s definitely not the casual coffee shop and brunch in bed every day that influencers may show you (because I probably took the pictures showing them doing it), but every day is something new. A new client, a new venue, a new set of people to impress, and a new story to tell.” Entrepreneurs can also be side hustlers working on many different related or unrelated projects as part of their personal and professional goals.
Capitol Hill Clothiers:
Anthony’s expertise branches out beyond photography and digital marketing into fashion. In January of last year, he met with Robert Ordway purveyor of Capitol Hill Clothiers, who now works on the Hill. Robert owned a retail clothing store in Indiana prior to moving to DC. After several follow-up discussion, they conceptualize Capitol Hill Clothiers to remedy the sea of ill-fitting and poorly styled suits in the DC area. They currently offer fabrics from the finest Italian mills and a fitting process that is among the elite made to measure clothier on the market. Capitol Hill Clothiers is another DC passion project that is an amalgamation of interests, passion projects, and the desire to bring back a piece of home to the District.
Piece of Advice:
Anthony’s best piece of advice to entrepreneurs is that young hustlers need to learn to embrace failure. Learning from mistakes and being unafraid of uncertainty and risk will ultimately pay dividends. In the long run, it will allow you to continue to do what you love and make a living.