4 years ago I picked up my first DSLR camera, a Nikon D3100. I didn't exactly have the funds for a new camera after just giving birth to my daughter, but we funded it with a good ol' best buy card. I had dabbled before in the art of photography but with a whole different format-Film- the original art of photography. So this whole digital photography was a new world for me. I started out in auto, taking pictures of my daughter, my family and friends. It was great! people LOVED my pictures even though I didn't know what the heck I was doing. Then I thought what everyone else is thinking..."what if I made this into a business?" Crazy right? I had no clue what to do, where to start or what to charge. I started asking other photographers I looked up to in the industry and let me tell you....their response (if any) were NOT what I wanted to hear. From the moment I entered into this industry it has been TOUGH. The critics are everywhere and ready to tear you to pieces, the competition rears its ugly head allll the time and everyone is fighting over the same piece of pie it seems. It was so hard not to get discouraged, not to give up...it gets a little lonely at times too because after all you'll trust someone only to have them tear you down in a instance. Now 4 years later here I am, Featured + Published....that's a HUGE accomplishment from where I started. Now I have people asking me....yes asking ME questions and words of advice, it's a bit surreal...after all 99% of the time I feel like my portraits could have been better! One thing I will NOT do or tell them is...Your not cut out for this. Those are harsh and undeniably incorrect words to use in ANY circumstance. Everyone starts out somewhere, even if it's with a point and shoot! No one is perfect overnight. Heck four years later and I'm SITLL learning! We all capture a vision in our OWN way...No one's is the right or perfect way because we are all DIFFERENT. Practice, practice, practice. Even if it's taking your camera with you to the local Target and taking pictures of your kids, the lighting is pretty nice in there surprisingly! Don't ever, ever, EVER compare....that ugly green monster can destroy you. Stop worrying about what everyone else is doing and DO YOU. Create your own voice not copy someone else's! Last but not least-there are enough people for everyone to capture memories for...literally. billions. So stop fretting over who you need to compete with, we are all in this little creative boat together & I can tell you that referring is what keeps me alive...when I can't or when something doesn't quite fit with me, I refer it to someone who speaks that lingo. Guess what...they refer back to me too! So if your just starting out, or you feel like you've lost your voice...FIND YOURSELF. Speak YOUR words through what YOU want to capture, not what Beauty & Choas thinks or what Lemonade & Lenses features....FIND YOU. Shoot what you love and love what you shoot, it shows...if that's not what your heart loves to do it's clearly evident in every photograph you take.
Stay true to yourself + Create what you want to create. Be amazing.