Thursday Tips & Tricks | Photographer’s Life – Integrity & Struggle

We taught the kids this past Wednesday night about integrity. I can not tell you how humbling it is to tell kids that sometimes you just don’t have the integrity that you want to have all the time. I want these kids to realize that it is ok to struggle sometimes. That even though struggle is hard, it will make you a better person.

I struggle as a photographer.

I used to struggle a LOT.

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Everyday it seemed there was new equipment…. new tools…. new shooting styles… the latest fad in editing… the latest fad in shooting… people buying as stuff as quickly as possible… new people buying a camera and calling themselves a photographer…

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But for me it was slow. I first knew that I liked photography when I wanted to learn about it in high school but wasn’t able to take the high school photography course. So what was one of my first classes to take in college my very first semester my freshman  year? Yep! I LOVED that class. Thinking back so much was learned in that class. I learned about photography. I also learned how to develop film. I met my (then future) husband in the photography lab for the first time. I also met a great gal in that photo class who helped me in my faith! To say that I loved that class is an understatement. That was now 13 years ago! As it many times does life just got in the way… I always had a camera and was always taking pictures but I didn’t have a ‘real’ camera. Right before Sophie was born I finally got one. It was terrifying. I won’t even get into learning photography. In college I learned the technical, the reciprocals, the book. With experience I am learning photography.

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Today the struggles are a lot less and mostly few and very far between. They still pop up and rear the ugly head of jealousy, ego, and competition in moments when I lose my gratitude. It took a while but I am happy with everything I have. I don’t need a new lens just because another photographer got one. I don’t need to shoot like someone else just because they got a bunch of facebook likes. I know that I am me and I am enough! I am so enjoying my journey in photography. I have been blessed with meeting wonderful photographers in my area and around the US. Some of them have become wonderful friends and trusted advisors. I have learned that my gratitude is now with me even I don’t expect it to be. My struggles are less but still there. And ya’ know what, that’s ok. When I make mistakes (and I do make lots of mistakes) I own up to them. If I have upset someone I apologize with sincerity and love them without question. Honesty in my business is very important to me. If you have never seen this video I highly recommend watching it. He talks about things that at first I didn’t realize people did. I mean how many times do you see others boost their ego with a simple exaggeration? It happens a lot in the photography world. I have learned that gratitude helps the soul.

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We taught the kids that their integrity belongs to them. It isn’t for show, it isn’t for awards or accolades, or for people to like them more. It is for their own hearts!

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