Even though I’ve been sharing my life online for over 6.5 years, there is so much that goes unpublished. There’s only a fraction of what goes on in my day to day that I post about. I’m just not a natural over-sharer. Lately I’ve been pushing myself to step outside of my comfort zone a bit and open up more. I’ve learned that I don’t have to spill my guts to connect, or be talking into a screen all day. I’ve really enjoyed getting some of my feelings out and communicating and connecting with all of you, beyond just fluff stuff (I do love fluff stuff, though!). To continue with these weekly posts I’ve been sharing, I wanted to make a list of things you probably didn’t know about Gal Meets Glam.
- The question I get all the time is: what does the “H” stand for? Is it Engel? Or Hengel? The reason why my Instagram handle is @juliahengel, not @galmeetsglam was back in the day when I got on Instagram, I thought it was just a filter app. When I signed up, @juliaengel was already taken, so I added the ‘H’ initial for my middle name, not knowing that it would become such a big platform for Gal Meets Glam. I can’t even count how many times I’ve received emails addressed to Julia Hengel, PR packages in the mail or even readers coming up to me saying “Excuse me, are you Julia Hengel?”. Each time, I quietly giggle inside, but know that it’s an easy mistake to make.
- When I first started Gal Meets Glam, Thomas and I knew nothing about photography. We began with a tiny, inexpensive point and shoot camera. After a while, I quickly realized that we needed to upgrade (the iPhone cameras were nowhere near the quality they are now). After doing a bunch of research and testing out different DSLRs at a camera store, my grandpa helped me buy a Canon 60D. It was huge investment and lot of money, so I spent that summer giving half of my paycheck to him, slowly paying it off. He always jokes now that he was the first “investor” in our business!
- I’ve met readers in the most unsuspecting places- from the top of Machu Picchu Mountain to the middle of Alaska. It’s amazing to look at our analytics and see readers from almost every country across the world. The internet is an incredible place. To date, we’ve had over 6.3 million readers visit our site! I can’t even wrap my head around that number!
- We have received thousands of requests for more video content, and it’s not that I’m not listening to you (because I am!), it’s that I have ‘video stage fright’. After 6.5 years, I’ve become really comfortable in front of a camera, but the moment we start recording a video, I freeze up. I find it really unnatural and have to talk myself through the whole process. I hate the feeling of being “on” for a video, I want to come across as myself and as natural as possible, but it’s just not something that comes easy for me. We have backlogs of half-finished videos, which is so unlike me and just goes to show how scared I get. BUT I am working on it and we have more video content coming soon!
- You probably know that Thomas and I have worked together for the entirety of Gal Meet Glam’s existence. What you might not know is that working together isn’t always the easiest. I’m tad opinionated and he also holds his own opinion in high regard. So when differences come up there’s rarely a winner, although we both like to think we won. Truth be told, the final result is usually better than if we had just done it my way. Pushing each other’s boundaries always leads to some great ideas…even if there is some bickering in between. Sure I’ve “fired” him a few times, and rehired him minutes later (don’t tell our HR department), but we’ve learned we’re actually really good at working together. Luckily, we’re comfortable enough with both being able to share our opinions without taking offense, while also realizing what our strengths and weaknesses are so we know what our main focuses should be.