Although I am aware that I am in the baby stages of my new career, I can't help but want to excel straightaway. Silly, but true. And now that I have the beginnings of a portfolio (yay!) and am about to start advertising more for brides and other private clients (yay yay!!) I'm trying to choose my best images for promotional purposes. And let me tell you - I'm having a rough time.
After doing so many shoots and working every weekend for free, I thought I would have a plethora of work to show for it. And that part is true. But the quality just isn't there. Sometimes I feel it's my work that lets the images down, others I feel the photographer/model just hasn't captured the concept. Or the worst ones are the images that I thought were really good, and then I get feedback telling me otherwise.
It's quite disheartening to look at six month's worth of time, effort and product and have so little to show for it. It's hard to stay positive and enthusiastic when it seems that you always have so far to go. It's even making me nervous about taking on private clients - am I ready? Can I give them what they want? Will they be happy with my work?
I know this is a passing notion and something will happen soon to lift my spirits and confidence back up and all will be right with the world again. But I'm starting to realise that this road is probably a little bit longer and tougher than I originally thought. I need to start focusing on the positives that have already occured to remind me how far I have come and what I have already achieved, and this can buoy me up on the days where the glass is half empty.
So my list of achievements so far includes:
* Finishing my Cert IV in Makeup - five months of after-work and weekend study was a social-life-killer and relationship strain. By the end I was sleep-deprived, emotionally exhausted and totally broke. But I got through it and now I have my first tertiary qualification!
* Racking up almost 60 hours of work experience in 2.5 months - the requirement for my course was 40 hours. I smashed it. Hell yeah!
* Registering my business name. Seems silly, but the day I walked out of the Office of Fair Trading with a certificate claiming that Bella Chic officially existed was amazing. That's the moment it became 'real' to me.
* My first 'nailed it!' moment - at my second-ever photo shoot, when we were taking the last images after three outfit changes. The photographer and model were just amazed by what I had done (even though I look back now and cringe!) and as I watched the model pose I got shivers. I had nailed it. And it felt amazing!!
* My first 'OMG - that's MY work?!?' moment - opening an email from a photographer after a shoot that I was so excited to work on, and the images were better than I ever thought they would be. Again, I look back now and see improvements that could have been made, but it's about the feeling I got opening those files and gasping out loud.
* My first portfolio - I only blogged about this a few weeks ago, but creating my portfolio was really magical for me. It was the first time seeing my work in print instead of just on screen, and it really changed my view of the images (some were better, some were worse). But it also made me feel like a real 'artist' in comparison to a 'hobbyist'.
What are your achievements to date??