Photography, like nearly all creatives fields, takes time and instinct to cultivate to get to the place where we feel successful. But what happens when we start to lose ourselves?
You can probably think of a friend, fellow creative, or maybe even yourself, who has lost their way along the path of photography. It’s easy to do. Sometimes photographers get caught up in what they want to be or who they think they should be and forget that that idea might not align with who they really are.
Listen to Your Inner Child
You’ve heard it said before, that children are the most creative and innovative, and there is some real truth to that. Children are the most creative because they have nothing to prove, for adults it’s a bit different.
Photographers get swept up in trying to follow trends, find the most popular editing process, and fighting to stay relevant in a changing career path. It’s so important to remember to listen to your inner child and consciously decide to try new things to make yourself stand out.
There are tons of benefits to staying creative and trying new things.
First, is that it keeps your creative juices flowing. It’s easy to become stale when you start creating a lot of the same thing, and that’s not a healthy process for anyone who calls themselves a creative. Trying new things keeps your creative thought processes going and will allow for you to accept taking some risks or going outside the box.
Second, is that you start to get back to the art. You may have started into photography for many reasons, but it’s important to go back to the roots or the desires we initially had in the very beginning of the creative process. It’s an attempt to listen to that gut feeling about something you created. That instinct that you feel when something amazing catches your eye. You have to start making yourself feel that way again.
Don’t Run Your Business Like a Committee
It’s always good to remind yourself that a committee of people does not run your photography business. There is only one real person who makes the big decisions, and that’s you. Now, that’s not to say that feedback and constructive criticism are all bad because they are not. There is always a time and place for advice and helpful tips from those around us to help us in our process of starting a business.
That being said, those people do not get to make the decisions- they can only suggest. This is one of the hardest things to remember and the toughest to keep a handle on. People love giving their opinions and like to make suggestions based on their own experiences, but it’s rare that any situation is exactly like another.
If you make a conscious effort to take creative risks and keep your mind and creative juices flowing and always remember that you are the one with the power in your business, then you are going to have a bright future.
We have to bear in mind that we can’t please everyone. We can’t copy other’s artwork, and we can’t force inspiration when it doesn’t fit. Stop fighting that feeling and take steps to find your inner child and make your craft fresh again so you can get back to that feeling in your gut when you really surprised yourself with greatness. You’re the only person you need to try to impress because that’s when the magic will happen.