We were able to secure photographer Tam’s services to take a series of stunning portraits of young entrepreneurs to mark our milestone of supporting more than 10,000 people to start their own business on the New Enterprise Allowance scheme.
Moving around our Manchester studio, eager to capture the celebratory mood, Tam photographed Ricardo Vilela, 40, who has launched a new digital media consultancy, make-up artist Dawia Hivadost, 22, plumber Asif, Beth and 28-year-old Emma Wallworth.
We selected Tam because she knows as well as anyone the exhilaration, as well as the tension, that comes from setting up a new company. Just last month, Tam launched her own photography business, Tinska, with the support of Government’s New Enterprise Allowance scheme.
Tam, 23, of Prestwich, explained:
I think the biggest thing that came from PeoplePlus was my confidence. They gave me a real understanding of running my own business, including basic accounting which I would never have grasped otherwise. They helped me gain a clear idea what I need to earn and what the goals would be and because of that I felt reassured that I could make it work.
The New Enterprise Allowance provides support and mentoring for unemployed budding entrepreneurs and is available to claimants of Jobseekers Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance (or their partners) and lone parents or sick on Income Support.
Tam said: “I studied photography at college and after that I had a few different jobs, working with models, and a few corporate pieces and a wedding. But it was just things here and there, so I was doing bar work and I even worked as a post-woman for two years.
Once I started on the NEA scheme, my enterprise coach Liz was particularly helpful, getting me to do market research, examining what the photographers in the area are doing and what they charge – and seeing what I could do differently. I know that I am quite unusual – being young and female in quite a male-dominated industry, and that encouraged me to market myself in a different way.
Tam’s stunning images on her new website beautifully demonstrate her skill across a wide range of subjects, including landscapes from Stockholm and Canada and closer-to-home locations such as Tatton Park in Cheshire and Holcombe Hill, near Bury.
Setting up a new business can be daunting, and involves an element of risk and uncertainty. But it’s clear that Tam is in it for the long-run. Since Tinska’s launch, she has secured corporate work for NHS England, and a number of portraiture commissions. She is also available to teach amateur photographers who want to get more out of their cameras. The only thing she doesn’t do is weddings.
Tam added: “My favourite job so far was photographing a guy who is a story teller, Yan Tan Tethera, and works in schools and theatres. He wanted me to do a series of portraits for his promotional work. It has given me lots of inspiration and I’d like to go on to build a strong portfolio of work with artists like him.”
“Being in the Manchester studio with PeoplePlus was a lot of fun as well. Everyone was so friendly.”
Tam is available for commissions and can be contacted via her website or via social media.