I’ve just been reading “Professional Photographer” magazine (UK). I was hoping to get hints, tips and insights into improving my photography, especially as I’m giving serious consideration to setting up a part time business, which would allow me to work around my Fatigue.
Did it inspire me?
Did it hell.
After reading a few articles, a couple of reviews and an interview or two I was ready to throw my camera in the bin, stuff my face with chocolate and/or slash my wrists.
Unless you are an award winning, internationally known photographer, using cameras that cost in excess of £10,000 and lighting equipment worth triple that amount, then clearly you are nothing other than an inadequate pretender.
I should have known better.
When I used to run my web design consultancy business, I subscribed to a magazine called DotNet, which was full of everything the professional web designer should know.
Except all it did was make me incredibly depressed. Slowly piles of unopened magazines rose in my office, glaring at me, daring me to open them so they could show up all my inadequacies, telling me if I was true professional, I wouldn’t be intimidated, therefore I must be a faker.
But there are many different sides to web design, from coding to databases to graphic design to marketing strategies to understanding how to effectively integrate all these things with your business. No one is an expert in all these fields, so either you become a specialist in one or 2 areas and employ people, or strategically link with other businesses, who specialise in these other realms, or you try and do it all and come across as amateur in everything.
What this means is, no matter how expert you are in your field, a magazine covering all aspects is going to make you aware of just how much you don’t know.
So it is with photography. Are you a natural with people, objects or landscapes? Do you want your images to be perceived as art, tell a story, or report an event? Are you wanting to shout to the world “look at me” or make other people feel better about themselves? Do you like the technical aspects of lighting studios or prefer quick snaps? Do you like everything to be perfect in the single shot, or do you enjoy the process of manipulating the image afterwards?
Consequently, with a magazine such as Professional Photographer, even if you were an award winning, internationally known photographer, using cameras that cost in excess of £10,000, you would still feel inadequate after reading it. *
The only real way of keeping your confidence is to keep away from critics, pessimists, and (especially) realists.
Far better to be happy in your own world than miserable in everyone else’s.
*And I’m not even going to begin mentioning how I felt after reading “Men’s Health” magazine. How to get a 6-pack in 6 weeks - pah!