I hesitated to write a blog post reflecting my 2010 year because I know my accomplishments aren't nearly as epic as some other photographer's that I admire from a far. However, in a recent book I read, a quote caught my attention: "Celebrate every small accomplishment." So, I suppose that's what I'm doing with this blog post. And looking back on this year and on how much I've personally grown, becoming more familiar with my likes and dislikes, how much my personal relationships have changed and how that effects my work, and building more structure and systems into my business to make everything more efficient and consistent, I realize that I've come a long way since December of last year. One decision that I made totally on a whim 8 days before departure was to go to the WPPI convention in Vegas in March. I have to give this convention a considerable amount of credit for making me realize that I had a lot of work to do as a photographer and business owner. Don't get me wrong, I didn't like being there...the disgusting stale smoky casinos, food poisoning from McDonalds right away when I got there, the loneliness because I hardly knew any other photographers at the time, the high school atmosphere of everyone knowing each other and walking around in big groups, etc. However, this all seemed to have worked to my advantage because I had nothing better to do during the day than to go to all the seminars and was too sick to go to all the parties with all the hip photographers that I didn't know. I went to every possible seminar that I could attend, which meant from 8am to 8pm listening to dozens of established photographers all around the world give their opinions about everything photography related. I soaked up all their insights and words of wisdom like a sponge and all year long I thought about them often and still do. I got my new blog up and running shortly after WPPI, surpassed the number of bookings that I thought I would have, ended up having clients that graciously surpassed my expectations, made friends in the photography and wedding industry, got published in MN Bride Magazine here in January (I'll post the spread when the issue comes out), had other weddings featured on blogs, read some pretty good books (post to come), moved to a rad new apartment, got my client room and office all set up, upgraded a lot of my gear (that's never ending I suppose) and ending the year with a just for fun trip to NYC and spending time with friends and taking pictures of a place I've never been.
After working an insane amount of hours this year, I have found a certain peace and joy that can only come from pouring your heart and soul into something that you truely care about, and I realize I still have a long way to go and many more years of late nights and cups of coffee, but I don't mind. Honest-to-God this has been one of the best years of my life and I'm so humbled and thank full for all of this to the point that I feel a little guilty that I'm so happy right now. 2010 was extremely blessed and I'm already looking forward to the weddings and people I get to work with next year! Happy New Year and cheers to 2011!
just a few things that I would like to work on for next year:
-I'm a big fan of systems and structure, so I will continue to build those for my business so I'm working smarter and not longer and harder for no reason.
-shoot more film! I enjoyed the whole process in college, so I'd like to get back into it.
-read 20 books
-continue to do more lifestyle shoots for myself
-take an inspirational road trip
(I have a lot more...and they are tucked away in my notebook for safekeeping)
Blog posts are always better with photos so here are some that I pulled from 2010 in no particular order.