Some photographers are so good at what they do, seeing their images makes me want to hang up my camera and call it a day.
But I don’t.
Honestly, you could replace the words “photographer” and “camera” with any creative art and be right on target.
Writers and their pens.
Artists and their sketch pads.
Musicians and their instruments.
We must overcome the desire to compare our work to that of others. On a practical level, too often we compare our raw images to their processed featured images. Or we compare our images after three years to their images after thirty. Or we compare our studio work with their photojournalism. (Feel free to replace “we” with “I” in all the previous sentences!)
If you are a photographer, declare yourself the best photographer.
I’m paraphrasing Ernest Hemingway’s character in Midnight in Paris who said the same of being a writer. He also said, “You’re too self effacing, it’s not (wo)manly.” I agree with both statements. Declaring yourself the best doesn’t mean that someone else isn’t, it means that you are the best photographer you can be at this time, in your given set of circumstances, with your current equipment list, and level of experience.
Embrace that truth and you’ll challenge yourself to make incremental improvements so that your best becomes better each and every day.
You have a voice. You are the best person to express that voice to the world through your images. Don’t let anyone else tell you differently.
If you can acknowledge and accept the potential of your story showing up in each image that you capture, you will find your creative eye liberated and push your boundaries to learn and grow at levels you may not have experienced before.
You knew this before you grew up and forgot. My son is six and he embraces it without hesitation:
“My name is Joshua and I’m the best LEGO builder in the whole wide earth.”
Who are YOU and what are you the BEST at?
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