Shoot. Share. Socialize.
When you browse the web you often come across rules that “lead” you the way to get your creative business running, no matter if you’re a graphic designer, musician, photographer or even any other kind of company. The most useful set of rules that I found til now is this one from Seattle based photographer Chase Jarvis. He breaks it down to 13 rules and every single one of them couldn’t be more clear. Helpful stuff, have a look.
I dont’t know if I ever really thought about sticking to a rule when I had to make a decision, I believe it was and still is more like following a gut instinct that guides me through all these life-changing crossroads (how poetic!). But still, looking back there are three things that I stick to all the time:
In other words “DO” whatever it is that you do. Talking about photography there is nothing more important than getting your hands on a camera. I realized that when I tried to get started as an assistant. At that time I thought that this would make me a photographer – assisting. It defenitely helps and you can leran a lot about light, gear, people (on the set and everyone alse involved in the production process), engage your network, etc. but you will never know how it is when you are standing behind the camera and the pressure is on you. So get yourself a camera, start shooting, play around with the settings, the light, keep the shutter running. Don’t worry about the gear. In the beginning I told myself all the time that I need this lens, that camera and that light modifier to capture the image that I had in mind. Bullshit, I just needed an apology. You don’t need a good photographers gear to take good pictures, you need his eyes.
Let’s say you followed rule one and you review the pictures you’ve taken everytime you start working on another project to figure out what to do better the next time you pick up the camera. Good step. I do it all the time just to get frustrated and decide that I suck. I have no clue why that happens but it keeps me moving.
What I think is even more important is showing your work to others and ask them what they think, like, dislike about it. If the only pair of eyes watching and criticizing your work are yours, the limit of your improvement is your horizon, your point of view and your knowledge about photography (or cooking, sewing, designing, blablabla..). If you show your portfolio to people with totally different (creative or less creative) backgrounds you will get totally new input and your learning curve and the quality of your work can get a big boost.
What I wanna say is that reviewing and getting your work reviewed is really important and a crucial step to improve your work.
I bet there are nicer words than “socialize” but it goes along pretty well with the other two. You could replace it with: Networking, Meeting people, Tell your story, Shout it out, Show off, Post it all on FB/twitter…,… ,…
There are thousands of doors out there which could give you the kick you need to get to the next level. All you need to do is convince the doorman to open it. So tell everyone what you’re up to, what your plans are, which projects you’re working on. They might have the contact you were looking for.
So Shoot, Sahre, Socialize it is. Since this sounds so compact and smooth and I was desperately looking for a name for my blog. BINGO, that’s its name.
Again, this is how it worked and still works for me. If you discovered that it could work for you too, cool. If not, don’t get lost in other peoples smartass advices and rules. Make your own ones.
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