You would think that as a Millenial Photographer that I would be AMAZING at social media. Guess what? I hate it. It is the worst thing ever created and yet it is the best thing ever created. The best part is the marketing of local businesses, the connections of people all over the world, and the beautiful images that come across, specifically, my Instagram feed.
Those beautiful images? Yeah, they are pretty to look at but as a photographer, building and building and growing and growing, you think to yourself, “I will never be that good.”
That, that right there, that sentence above. Hold please, this one: ☝️☝️ ☝️, yeah that’s a damn lie that I have been kicked in the ass to learn. Well, K, there’s your reality check. You can wish and want and dream but nothing will happen until you put in the work. Until you start taking the time to learn, to watch, to ask questions to push yourself, you will always believe that that sentence is the truth.
I have been asked multiple times where I studied photography. I’ll let y’all in on a HUGE secret. Nowhere. I have no college degree. Other than basic art classes in high school I have never taken said “professional training” but you know what? I am f-ing proud of that. Everything that you see, that I see, is self-taught. I used to scroll through Insta and Tumblr thinking to myself, “Man, I could never take a photo like that.” and beat myself up. I would go into this anxious depression and spiral into negative thoughts about how I wasn’t good enough and how I was never going to be good enough and how me wanting to build a business out of this was nonsense. But holy shit was I wrong! Someone that I love dearly, (my husband, but boyfriend at the time) kicked me in my ass (figuratively y’all, he’s amazing) and told me “As long as you believe you will never be good enough, you will in fact never be good enough.” This was shortly after I had my bathroom floor moment. (please please please read that blog post because everyone has that moment.) Where I thought about giving up, honestly for about the tenth time but this time I was serious. I looked up how much I could sell my camera for. I did the math and saw how much money I would save if I didn’t need to keep up with a website and client galleries and an Adobe subscription. I was very serious.
But, with some help from my friends and my future husband at the time, I didn’t give up. I picked myself off the floor, wiped the mascara and tears off my face and poured a glass of wine, and looked up articles to teach myself how to run a business. Here I am 4 years later and I’m a better photographer than I was and I feel more confident than I did.
Social media sucks. It ruins your self-esteem and the confidence you need to have in yourself. But just remember, that you can do it. You are good enough. You are talented enough.
To quote an amazing book and movie, “You is kind. you is smart. you is important.”
Don’t you forget it?
Scroll down to see some “when I started” vs “what I do now” photos.