This title might be a bit misleading but its kinda true: I'm going to stop shooting personal work for a big part. And that is for a very good reason because photography is my job now. I take this decision for two reasons: personal commitments and my clients.
You all probably heard the sentence from people that do their dreamjob, it's not always glitter & glamour and something crucial changes when you do it for the money. I'm INCREDIBLY grateful I can do this & I don't want to do any other job ever in my life. But at the same time I came to a point sacrifices have to be made: and thats personal work.
First of all, it's a choice I make now with my whole heart. No hidden motives, I like to be honest.
I just realized that for the past 2,5 months, I'm unable to keep up with a schedule that has me working 14 to 18 hours a day, 7/7 with no limits or any day off (until today & tomorrow for the first time in 2,5 months!). I'm always retouching, always shooting, always emailing clients or finishing up jobs. And its great, but I feel that my mind wants more and my body can't follow this routine anymore (especially because I had to do a demanding almost full-time job before this and photography part-time! After nine months I think its time to throw the towel in the ring ... even for this 25 years old).
I'm still sitting on a lot of collaborations from the past and some amazing collabs are coming in (or have arrived today!). And thats fine. But I don't want more then that. Its enough. These coming up fill up my creative heart with joy & pleasure because I got a lot of plans for them!
But why the rest? You see, photography used to be my escape (even when paid back when I had a daytime job) from my old job & before that school assignments. Right now the escape has become a full-time commitment. Everything has changed for me in the past two months and with that also the realization that this escape isn't an escape anymore. And I need to find a new "thing" to have a creative escape just for me.
For me that is: living a life outside work, when I shoot for myself = I want it to be next level for me (more details, more preps, more time, more attention, more "being" there and not rushing it) and most important: have all the time I need to bring the best product possible to my clients.
Right now I can do something I've been dreaming about for ages and I have so many plans for my clients I want to be able to put all of my passionated energy for this job in mostly that alone. I have so many plans to make my service even better and there is so much more I want to bring in to make experiences even more amazing! But its a big commitment. And I feel more then personally committed to bring my photoshoots to a whole new level of experience. In my last blog I wrote about being honest & fast in collaborations and the sacrifice I have to make is that collabs and too much free work isn't possible for me anymore to combine. I want to deliver a better quality with more details and thoughts but I also just have 24 hours a day.
I don't want the commitment anymore of that delivery because I do not wish to disappoint designers in quality/time/quantity as this is supposed to be personal work to relax for me from assignments while still being creative. Its as simple as that. I dont want to rush out shoots to meet deadlines for them constantly or have collabs that I don't get finished in time.
I want to focus on the business now mostly. And what I can give and thats what I want to focus on alone. Now my home isn't my workplace anymore (for the biggest part, I got a studio! YEY) I want to take the next step and make my life and routine more then 24/7 working nonstop on personal and paid work. I want to dedicate the time I work to my clients alone and I feel this is one of the best steps I can take for my business & myself.
I will keep shooting for myself. But I want to narrow it down to max one shoot a week (or two) instead of multiples on a day, half of the week I'm not doing client work. Art is my blood and life and air and I need it. I got some amazing opportunities coming up and I want to focus on that to the tiniest details, allowing me to better my skills in photoshop and deliver more detailed work. In the past few months I grown a lot and I feel my personal self has also shifted value in all levels of existence. I also want to be able to live my life more outside my work. I cried today when my best friend because I missed her so much and I realized how much I neglected everything I enjoyed. It has been a crazy year, amazing in all its amazing dips and great heights. And now I want to take the next steps to balance it all out.
This blog has become a bit of a ramble. And thats fine I guess ... This is a personal one. But writing it down has made me realize how much weight is falling of my shoulders. I'm going to wrap up the next few collaborations that have been waiting and prepare myself for the amazing opportunities coming up. More slow (which is still at full high speed for all of you) with a fresh heart and mind and a burning passion to deliver the most amazing experiences to my clients while not compromising my personal cravings to create.
So do I quit personal work? To me it feels like that because I took a huge step back commitment wise from years of doing lots of collabs all at once. But I feel taking the pressure of quantity and put my energy in quality will be the best decision I can ever make. The few collabs I do have lined up ... still dying to get started on them!
Living the dream is a road like any else. And its fine like this :)
Maybe I can sqeeuze in some personal time as well .. Who knows ;)