I literally read it every day.
“All you give is pie in the sky advice. Everything’s great. How can you say that when it’s anything but?”
“People are awful. You can’t trust anyone. I want to provide quality work but I have to deal with all of this ‘stuff’ within the industry. Why can’t I just shoot and be the artist I want to be?”
And I feel your pain. I really do.
But when I read things like this, I know there is very little I can do. I can’t turn a switch in your brain and make you look at things differently. I can’t rework all you’ve done up until now to come to the conclusions you’ve reached.
I read a great book recently – one I would highly recommend. You can read it in an hour or two if you put your mind to it. It’s a fast read. But the thoughts are incredibly powerful. Thoughts that will make you think about how you approach things.
The book is Risky Is The New Safe by Randy Gage. I’ve followed Randy for years. I’ve attended one of his seminars. I love his “no bull” approach.
In this book, he wrote something I’d like to share. Something I’d like you to take to heart.
“Take the same opportunity and offer it to a broke person and a wealthy person, and I guarantee you they will see it differently. When I was poor, I looked at everything through the lens of the mind viruses I was infected with. No matter what business venture I was exposed to, I approached it with the beliefs that you need money to make money; you need an education and have to know people, and so on. I could look at anything and immediately give you 15 reasons why it wouldn’t work. While I was accumulating all the evidence why it couldn’t be done, people with prosperity consciousness were simply doing it.
For those many years I was struggling financially, I was a cynic. And nothing kills innovation, creativity and ambition faster than cynicism. It’s poverty consciousness.
Wealthy people have a healthy skepticism that causes them to evaluate things objectively and make good decisions based on solid assumptions. Skepticism is healthy; cynicism never is. Here’s why: If you ask the wrong question, the answer doesn’t matter. “
If you ask why the photography industry has changed, why you can’t make money the way you used to, or why consumers are terrible for wanting the digital files, you’re asking the wrong questions.
If you ask how you can change your pricing structure to give people what they really want, look for alternative ways to build your photography packages, or ask how photography will impact people in the coming years, you’re on the right track.
Photography isn’t dead. In fact, it’s anything but.
We read a lot now. But that’s changing. We’re incorporating more than ever into video and audio. We’re a graphic society. We attract through imagery. We’re obsessed with quick pictures. We love color and vibrancy. And that’s not going to change.
But the way our society lives, works, moves and thinks is changing.
Go back a hundred years or more, and it took a generation to get a new idea into place. Now it takes a year, or even a few months.
With that much change, it’s hard to wrap our brains around new ideas. Even before we come to terms with one idea, we’re on to something else.
But don’t think photography is alone. Ask anyone in any industry, and they’ll probably start talking about the chaos. Look at the music industry. Or the publishing industry. Or education.
Watch this year’s TED prize winner – Sugata Mitra and his wish to design the future of learning. Its simple. Its brilliant. And I couldn’t agree more.
Everything is changing. And yes, it’s difficult at times. Mind-blowingly difficult.
But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun and exhilarating and full of potential.
What if you approached one thing differently today? Instead of saying “this sucks”, what if you said “I’m going to do one great thing?”
I know it’s not easy to believe this. I know it’s not easy to do this.
But what’s the alternative?