Today’s Contemplation

Red Dots

I’ve been think­ing about my pho­tog­ra­phy a lot late­ly. I do want to make it a career but I just don’t know if I have what it takes to be a pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­ph­er. I know I’m a good pho­tog­ra­ph­er, as in I have the eye. What I’m lack­ing is the peo­ple skill. I’m not very good with peo­ple. Hell, I’m SCARED of peo­ple. That’s why I pre­fer tak­ing pic­tures of land­scape and ani­mals to tak­ing pic­tures of peo­ple. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, there is no mon­ey in that. At least not for me since I know there are many oth­er pho­tog­ra­phers who make a boat­load of mon­ey from land­scape and ani­mal pho­tog­ra­phy. I like to think that I just haven’t got to that stage YET (my sad attempt at pos­i­tive think­ing) but what if I’ll nev­er get to that stage? Peo­ple seem to like my work but appar­ent­ly not enough to want to own it and hang it on their walls (except for the few peo­ple who do have my work hang­ing on their walls or have bought my work, you know you’re awe­some).

I real­ly need to get over my fear of peo­ple. Not real­ly an easy thing to do if you were me. I grew up in a soci­ety where peo­ple are super judg­men­tal. Grow­ing up, my father seemed to care more about what our neigh­bours think about us than what WE think about us. I’ve had the idea that peo­ple are evil because they judge, because you’ll nev­er know what they say about you behind your back, plant­ed in my head for so long that it’s become almost impos­si­ble to pull out.

Now that I’m liv­ing in anoth­er coun­try and anoth­er soci­ety, I know I should give peo­ple anoth­er chance, espe­cial­ly since I need to mar­ket my skills to peo­ple in order to help the fam­i­ly econ­o­my (not that we live in pover­ty or any­thing but we do need to trav­el). I’ve also met some super nice peo­ple here whom I know won’t judge me or talk nasty about me behind my back. I know that by fear­ing peo­ple, I’m being judg­men­tal myself, which makes me one of those peo­ple I fear, and it’s so screwed up that I don’t know what to think about that. In fact, I’ve nev­er thought about it before. Oh the won­der of stream of con­scious­ness writ­ing!

I guess what I need to do is: (1) stop judg­ing people/seeing them as mon­sters; (2) fig­ure out what I’d like to focus on in my pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­phy (I’m think­ing fam­i­ly, mater­ni­ty, pet, and chil­dren, and maybe small wed­dings); (3) revamp my port­fo­lio site to make it more busi­ness-like and put in some new work that I’m proud of; (4) do some mar­ket­ing; (4a) make some busi­ness cards; (4b) maybe put some ads some­where?; and last but not least (5) prac­tice talk­ing on the phone (I’m tele­phono­pho­bic — when I’m talk­ing on the phone, my brain shrinks to pea-size).

On an unre­lat­ed note, I fell in love with the music of Frances Eng­land today (I’m a suck­er for sweet, folksy, kid­dy songs) and would some­one please buy both her CDs for me, kthxbai.

5 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I think you should def­i­nite­ly go for it. I know what it’s like to be scared of peo­ple. I think the secret is just prac­tice. It sounds absurd–practice talk­ing to peo­ple, prac­tice talk­ing on the phone–but I think it real­ly works. It will be hard, for sure, but as long as you take it one step at a time I think you’ll do great. Your goals in the fourth para­graph are a great start, as well. If you can break those down into small­er, more incre­men­tal steps I don’t think any­thing will stand in your way.

  2. Fir­da — you are so tal­ent­ed it would be sick if you gave up! And you are also incred­i­bly artic­u­late and cre­ative — peo­ple skills can be learned — I’m scared of peo­ple too, espe­cial­ly with the judg­ing. But — seri­ous­ly — your work will stand and speak for itself! I sup­pose it is the bal­ance between com­mer­cial suc­cess and your own artis­tic incli­na­tion. Not that these are always oppo­si­tion­al, but I can see how one can pay for the oth­er. I would love to own more of your pho­tos — some­day I will. Too bad yr not clos­er to Cal­gary! My sis­ter has got­ten loads of com­pli­ments on her wed­ding pho­tos!

  3. Hey me again. We are in the same boat. I shoot as well and would LOVE to take into a career some­day. I can­not stand doing por­trait work but know the mon­ey is there. I have looked into stock pho­tog­ra­phy but can­not get a clear pic­ture of how it works. I would rather shoot a still sub­ject and see it plas­tered on a wall some­where. I have 2 kids under 5 and peo­ple are always com­ment­ing on the great pics. When i take pics of oth­er peo­ples kids they are just ok… Must be a com­fort zone thingy… Any­way I am glad I found this blog now LOL
    Cheers

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