After discovering the pure joy of the party photobooth backstage at the Rothbury Festival in 2009, I came home wanting to have one of my own. A little internet sleuthing turned up an emerging industry in photobooth rentals. A couple of thousand dollars of gear and software later, and with the help of a very talented metalworker friend, The Photobot was born.
The Photobot was a crash course in entrepreneurship and making stuff work. I designed and built the device from scratch, constantly adding new tweaks to make it work. I built a website to market it, ran ads on various platforms, drew up contracts, taught myself basic graphic design skills with GIMP, and made honest-to-goodness sales.
Over the course of the next couple of years, I used the machine for about 20 events, including my own wedding and the weddings of some very close friends. I more than broke even on the machine with paid events and had lots of fun with it at parties. Early in 2013 I sold the entire business, including the website and name, to a young hairstylist who already had a solid footing in the wedding industry. I emerged profitable, and had a great time along the way. A successful exit!