SODO Stories, Made in SODO Series: Easton Richmond Photography

The SODO Stories, Made in SODO series, is a collection of stories about business owners who create, design and sell products that are made in SODO. The businesses featured in the Made in SODO series are all featured in our Made in SODO video. Each story/business is unique, and they help to create a vibrant community here in SODO.  To watch the video, it can be found here: Made in SODO Video

Story: Jillian Celich

SUNNY ARMS & SODO HELP FREELANCE ARTISTS ACHIEVE THEIR DREAMS.

Tucked away on South Snoqualmie Street, nestled between industrial businesses, lies a cooperative (co-op), named Sunny Arms. Sunny Arms is filled with artists who live and work in this 17-unit building that was once a former shoe factory. But Sunny Arms is more than just a building, it is a creative community that allows artists to turn their artistic ambitions into reality. For Easton Richmond it did just that. With the help of Sunny Arms and his hard work ethic, Easton was able to launch his own photography business, Easton Richmond Photography.

Easton Richmond’s path to photography wasn’t linear, he attended the University of Washington and majored in communication. After graduation, he went into advertising, but quickly burned out, and decided to leave the field. In need of a job, Easton went to work at a winery. Easton enjoyed working the harvest and traveled to Australia and New Zealand to work in the wine fields there. During this time, Easton started playing around with a camera and fell in love with it and returned to the United States to take intro photography classes at a community college, while continuing work at the winery. He decided to pursue photography full time, and attended the Seattle Art Institute, and after completion, worked at Nordstrom’s photo studio and assisted other full-time photographers. Eventually, Easton decided the timing was right to open his own photography business.

Easton has been able to combine all his interests and mostly shoots for wineries, distilleries and breweries to promote and build their brands. In 2014, Easton did a personal project of shooting the wine harvest and published a book of his work that he now uses as a marketing tool. Although he has autonomy with his work, Easton must wear a lot of hats as a freelancer, which can be hard. He does his own promotion and marketing while also running the business side of things and taking the photographs. Even with setbacks, Easton knows that it’s a leap of faith to support yourself, and for him, the positives outweigh any negatives.  

Easton can’t imagine being anywhere else other than Sunny Arms in SODO. He loves that SODO is less hustle and bustle than downtown, while still being close to the freeways and other gateways to the city. He also loves the industrial feel of our neighborhood because it provides unique and interesting places to shoot. For him, he has discovered a network of other photographers here in SODO, where they get together and bounce ideas off of each other. He loves that he was able to carve out a quiet space for himself and his business, and knows SODO and Sunny Arms helps to provide that environment. This is why Easton Richmond Photography is Made in SODO.

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A special thanks to Seattle’s Office of Economic Development Only in Seattle Program for sponsoring a portion of the Made in SODO project.

With a focus on building up small businesses and strengthening our local economy, Seattle’s Office of Economic Development works to foster an economy where no matter who you are, who you love, or where you’re from, you can achieve your career and business goals right here in Seattle. OED’s Only in Seattle program supports SODO businesses by partnering with the SODO BIA to advocate for the neighborhood, build community capacity and fund neighborhood programs.