2017 left a bad taste in my mouth. I think a lot of people share that same feeling for a number of reasons. So I’ll take the feelings and lessons from 2017 and use it to propel me forward.
A few years ago I had a photo agent tell me I needed more story in my photos. Of the ~20 or so images I picked to show she pulled out this one and said this is amazing, go out and shoot more of this. It wasn’t a confusing message but I honestly couldn’t figure out how to shoot more of that particular image. The image was a one-off. A moment in a photo shoot that was unplanned yet beautiful. It was not a “pretty” posed portrait where I had my hands on the lighting, the pose the emotion. I didn’t make that shot, I captured a moment.
How the fuck do I recreate a lucky moment?
It’s been about 18 months since that conversation and it finally dawned on me that I have been shooting with the wrong intentions in mind. I have been shooting trying to impress other people. I have been trying to impress models so that I can attract more talent to work with. I have been trying to impress photo editors in hopes that they hire me. I have been trying to impress designers in hopes that they support my efforts and want to hire me or collaborate on future shoots. I have been trying to impress the masses on social media….I have not been shooting for me.
For 2018 I hope to change that. I’ve started with some housecleaning on social media. I do not need to see any more well-lit, beautiful portraits of really pretty people. We are all bombarded by those images. I need to see different. I need to see creativity. I need to be inspired enough to stop my half-second scrolling view. I also trimmed the fat on my feed. I deleted the countless shots I had posted of pretty people with pretty light. I’ve vowed to try and be willing to fail.