It is already the third of February in 2014. Holy shit. I mean seriously, when did that happen? We have been so busy over here in the Photogen Inc studio that I haven't even had a moment to connect with all of you blog readers, so hopefully this post can catch us all up! We have had an incredibly busy start to the year. As I thought about this post, my first thought was, "How can I possibly even explain exactly what we've been up to?" Then I remembered a specific photo I took on my phone, sometime last year, to write about the every-day-hustle that is being a business owner, a leader and an artist. I wanted to show this image, because frankly, it's normal. It's not pretty or perfectly styled. It's about as real as it gets. Some days I take fancy pictures that end up on newsstands, printed beautifully on glossy pages. Some days we are a part of a couple's beautiful wedding day and we deliver a gorgeous album of photos that will make their hearts swoon for a lifetime. However, most days, we are in the studio or holed up in a coffee shops on our laptops, feverishly editing, answering the never-ending-emails, answering phone calls, updating social media and making sure that our clients are taken care of. It means early morning and late nights. There's a controlled chaos and structure that goes hand-in-hand with running a business. There are routines, lots of meetings, time management and logistics that are involved behind-the-scenes to make sure our beautiful work happens.
With all of this said, if you follow my Instagram account (and if you don't, you should), I often use the hashtag #livingthedream. This is also reality and also the truth. No matter if I am out shooting or mopping the studio floors, I am incredibly fortunate to live my dream - day in and day out. This is an incredible opportunity that I feel very grateful for. Not only do I have the trust of my clients, but they allow me to create and carry out my visions of what I think the best is. They trust our team, our experience and our process and our finished product and they allow us to truly be remarkable. The end of 2013 and the beginning of 2014 has really made my take a hard look at myself as a leader and ask myself "How can I be better?" Now, I admittedly always have lofty goals and high expectations of myself, but this is something that I want to be even more intentional as the year goes on. I'm asking myself, " How can I be a better photographer and artist? How can I better impact my industry? How can I lead better for my team? How can I grow as a person?" So, in these winter months, before the crazy-awesome-wedding-season-of-2014 begins, I've been a bit more quiet. I've been traveling a bit, reading books and photographing many project that are leading me, in their own way, to be a better creative. I'm also starting to feel re-energized to blog again.
Connection with our clients, readers and vendors has always been incredibly important to me, so hopefully the photos below can catch you up a bit on all of our adventures. Our 'slow season' really hasn't been that slow. The editorial projects that we have been working on have been more-than-amazing and I encourage you all to check out the recent work and posts on the commercial site. In the meantime, I am going to leave you with a quote from a man named Bruce Edwards, who is the Executive Vice President and Chief Creative Officer of FAME. He was interviewed by The Minneapolis Egotist on "What I learned in 2013" and I loved these words on #livingthedream:
"What I learned in 2013.
Doing great work is hard.
It’s like running a continuously uphill marathon. In the biting below-zero-ness that is January. You stop for water, which is being shot at you from a fire hose. There’s a 40mph headwind, and the road is embedded with glass. You’re barefoot, of course. On the bright side, people are lined up to watch. On the less-bright side, they are throwing snowballs at you, and every quarter mile someone nails you in the nuts. Intentionally. Borderline gleefully.
Yet we do it. We love it. We live for it. We are smitten by the pursuit. And we revel in the completion of something we deem worthy of our craft. Occasionally, we’re even able to make it look easy. (Bonus points for fakery.)
What I look forward to in the coming year.
Sick. And wrong. And yet here we are again. Here’s to the next marathon."