Being a photographer, videographer or just a creative in general has its ups and downs. The challenges faced by many different creatives are not really spoken about or shares. To be honest, many of us are not sure if there is a right or bad way to be creative but we all sometimes share a common interest or a common problem. Thankfully there are a few rules or guidelines rather that can be used to have a healthy and fulfilling creative life. In this article, I will be talking about 8 of those rules that can help to guide you or someone else down the path to thriving as a creative in the field of photography. Let’s begin
One of the first creative rules I will share with you is to not rely too much on your talent. Recognizing your talent as a creative can sometimes be a bad thing depending on how you interpret or react to recognizing that you have a gift. Many of us become complacent in our abilities to create amazing images so much that we don’t realize that we can someday hit a wall.
Hitting a creative wall is something most experienced photographer or creatives, in general, have experienced and not know how to handle it. This is because we have become so comfortable with our abilities that we don’t even test yourself or try to put our spin on something new. Exercise your creative abilities and explore other things so that when the times comes, you can turn it on and off when you need to. This comes with experience and much practice.
To be a successful creative in the field of photography you can’t take your foot off the gas. You have to keep improving and learning as you go. You can never truly know or learn everything in photography as technology advances so often leaving us with something new to learn almost every day. Of course, this does not mean you should deprive yourself of basic luxuries like sleep and going out to have some fun but nonetheless, stay focused on becoming better than the photographer you were last month or a week ago. It’s this constant drive to become greater than you were that will make you an amazing photographer or creative.
I have heard many people complain that they love photography and it’s their passion but they just don’t have the time to learn the tricks and trades of the craft to improve their own skills. I often don’t believe in this excuse because we naturally find time for the things we love or the things we want to do. I believe we all have time to do many things but it’s just how and where you allocate your time when you actually have it. Making necessary sacrifices for the things that interest you the most will eventually pay off in the long run. One thing I always tell myself and others around me when they feel demotivated about something is that if it was easy then everyone would be doing it. Not many people like to challenge themselves, as a result of that, they become complacent with mediocrity but then get upset about why they’re not where they want to be. Don’t become one of those people, keep pushing and learning.
The third rule I will share with you is to put effort into protecting your creative generator. Many times as creatives or photographers we don’t take the time out to explore other elements of our craft. We usually end sticking with at least 1-3 genres and forget about everything else or don’t try to sharpen our skills in those other genres. Complacency does not generate creativity, therefore you should protect your creative generator and explore different aspects of your craft and try to learn as much as possible about each. For example, if you are a photographer that is skilled in, and extremely talented in the genre of portrait photography then you should flip the script and try landscape photography for a little bit to see what you can do. It’s all about constantly testing yourself to then make improvements.
The next creative rule is to make a habit of acting on your Ideas or capturing them. As you become more experienced and explore your craft you will begin to have ideas that come to you randomly out of nowhere. It’s best to not only write down these ideas but also act on them as soon as possible. You may never know, an idea you have might just be pure gold and result in many business opportunities for yourself.
Reach out and connect with other creatives like yourself or even some that are different from you. Connecting and building bridges with other creatives often helps to give you a new perspective on what it is you’re doing. Building these bridges will help to also offer you meaningful advice or even a helping hand that you might need in the long run. It can easily get very lonely as a creative especially if you’re the only creative person you know. Before you know it, you may end forcing yourself into a sad state because you have now become isolated on your own Island.
Things will happen in the creative world that will get you upset but try to never let a few minutes of anger burn a bridge that could’ve been useful to you in the future. I have made the mistake of going against this creative rule before and it has resulted in me losing a client that could’ve very well be beneficial to me today. Remind yourself that an angry mind is a narrow one and not every situation is worth you blowing up.
Helping others in the creative industry can be so rewarding and makes you feel good to have lent a helping hand. There absolutely nothing wrong with helping those that might be even more skilled or experienced than you. The fact that these other people need your help should indicate to you that you’re talented enough for them to need your help. Your generosity will eventually find its ways back to you and as a result of you helping others, you may find someone being of great help to you.
You will eventually need to have moments where you need to take the time to unplug from social media and everything that happens on your phone. These social media platforms can be very helpful as creative when sharing your work but can also be very distracting when trying to actually create. Practice turning your phone off or putting it on silent for a few hours each day to develop a habit of detaching from your device on a daily basis.