So why is a commercial photographer writing about positivity and faith? Well, why not? In order to pursue a career in the creative industry you will need to stay positive and have faith in your work. Sometimes, I’ll find myself on a 4 to 5 hour shoot and have to spend up to 25% of that time problem solving because of an error caused by myself and/or the client. You will also find that early on people are going to cancel/reschedule, you are going to make mistakes tons of mistakes, your clients are going to try and take advantage of you and your social media following may take a while to build. Those are just a few of the obstacles you will come across as you start to build your experience, but there are a few things you can do to retain your sanity.
For starters, don’t linger in the negatives because solutions do not live there. There is a great quote by Stephen Chbosky that goes, “We can’t choose where we come from, but we can choose where we go from there”. The situation is what it is and unfortunately, we do not have a Back to the Future DeLorean at our disposal (at least I don’t). Zone in and develop those next steps. Now, I understand that this all sounds easier said then done but it all starts with having faith in yourself and your abilities as a photographer/creative. There have been many moments in my young career where I just wanted to give up due to a lack of motivation. It is not that I was lazy, but I found it was difficult for me to see past the other talented and successful competition. I built these metaphorical pedestals and put other creatives on them. I was convinced that there was no room for me in this industry.
Now, some of you may already know this but I actually gave up photography a few years back. I sold my camera and all of my equipment. I went on to waste my time working a job I hated and spent too much money living a life unguided. It wasn't until I discovered a creative by the name of Andrew Kearns, that I pieced it all together. Photography is an art form, and there is more than enough room for everyone's creativity to shine through. At the end of the day, you may not be the only passionate photographer out there, but I can guarantee that no one has the same creative vision as you. Know your worth and preach it, because if you don't, no one will.
Lastly, I'd like to discuss the importance of accountability. Accountability is important for a few reasons. You need to own your obligations and when/if you fall short, you'll need to inform the client. Look, life happens and our clients should understand that. There have been a couple of occasions earlier in my career we I was unable to deliver a client’s photos on time. I just needed to remain calm at the moment and be completely honest. Additionally, it helps when you can conjure up a few solutions to offer the client.
Accountability, faith and positivity will allow clients to see you as an honest, confident problem solver that can handle their project. Start today!
Thanks for reading!