So yeah, here is my second blog piece. I'm writing it on my phone during my commute back from a London shoot. Decided I'd use this time to write than scroll through social media, getting drawn in, distracted, feeling inadequate, feeling anxious..

As a photographer, It's incredibly important to find a balance between complacency and wins. I always want to push on each shoot, just enough without compromising results, to try and do better than last time. What did I learn before. What small positive changes can I make this time? Our years are given to help us improve and grow. Reflect. Try something different if the last thing didn't work. But as an artist , it's also vital that I celebrate successes and reflect on accomplishments and good work. That isn't easy. It's not our go to is it. PAYE jobs carry with them the benefit of supervision, where one can take comfort that good work will be rewarded and training provided to ensure we stay on a measured path for progress. And success. Whatever success means. maybe more on that another time

But how do we obtain that insight when the business team is one.

A few weeks ago I was having a few tough days of self doubt. The critical voice was up front and driving and it was proving pretty tough trying to stay on a clear road. I've had moments like these before as we all of course do, but what I have leant and what I reminded myself of is that things can change from moment to moment and that includes feelings. An emotion isn't forever. We forget that in times of crisis.

But the universe, as it always does, leant a hand. During those few days , I had two enquires in one afternoon from two unrelated individuals who wanted to ask how I had managed to become a full time house photographer for a particular festival. My responses and following conversions had me recount my journey and of course bring much needed light to what I have achieved over the years. It took me out of myself so I could appreciate the effort, sacrifice and will mustered that eventually enabled me to work full time as a lifestyle and event photographer and videographer. Thankyou to those two souls. I vividly remember contacting photographers in the same way years ago, hungry and passionate to take pictures and find a voice and vocation in photography. 

Our races are only with ourselves. The point is to be the best version of ourselves. We never know the struggle an individual may have endured to be able to showcase the type of content we find ourselves feeling jealous of. We also aren't privileged to know what isn't being shared or the extent to which a post or publicly shared information is being vetted. 

We need only compare ourselves to yesterdays version. Challenges are an opportunity to learn. We need to quiet the noise. Slow our breath. Do more feeling and less thinking. And make healthy decisions. That comes from understanding how things really make us feel. 

Remember my opening stating I chose to write this rather than be seduced by social media? Let me be clear. I do my share of doom scrolling. I'm not immune. But I remind myself that I do have utility and I do have a choice. And I choose to feel fulfilled as often as I can. Scrolling through feeds on social networks does not make me feel fulfilled. That indulgent might get me excited, but excitement is not the same as happiness. Those are two different chemicals. Dopamine vs serotonin. People make me happy. Honesty and integrity and kindness. Crazy stories. Vulnerable interactions demanding trust and authenticity. 

So I choose to spend more time having more time with people. I choose to be as close to them as I can. I choose to celebrate them where I can. I choose to support them where I can. And I choose to try and remember the efforts I have and still put in to work with them when I can. 

That is why I am a photographer.