Progress: Gaining more self-confidence in your photography and art.
The only way I would define ‘progress’ in photography is whether you are becoming MORE self-confident, or LESS self-confident.
Self-confidence is our creative life-blood
The way I see it– the more confident we are as artists, the better.
The more confidence we have, the more art we will produce. The more art we produce, the happier we are. The happier we are, the more we (continue) to create art. And not only will that art help us (it brings us joy) — but we can share that joy with others.
The best artist is a happy and productive artist.
Ways to become more confident in your photography
1. Gain physical strength:
I am convinced that there is a physiological connection between body strength, mental strength, and artistic strength. The more we build up the muscles and strength of our body– the more confident we will feel when shooting in the streets.
We will take more risks, because we know that we can take a punch to the face. We are more supple, nimble, and quick when shooting. We react quicker. Our senses are sharpened.
Therefore, I recommend doing deadlifts at the gym, chin-ups at the park, yoga at home, or just going for long walks.
2. Spend less time online:
I find that personally — the more time I spend online and looking at the art of others, the less confident I am of myself. Why? Because I am comparing myself to the art of others– rather than being true to myself. There is nobody to measure yourself against– you are your own ruler.
Only measure your progress in your art– by comparing how good you are as a photographer today compared to yourself a year ago.
3. Have more fun:
The philosopher Heraclitus said all life is just a child playing at the beach– building sandcastles. The best artists are the most playful (just study the life and work of Pablo Picasso). When we are children, we play for the sake of it. We play because it is fun. We don’t play because we will be paid. We don’t play because our parents ‘force’ us to play. We don’t play because society tells us to do so. We do it for intrinsic, self-driven and self-motivated reasons.
The same should be for your photography– treat photography like your visual-play thing — your visual building blocks, and you are free to put them together, break them apart, or re-configure them however you want. The more fun you have as a photographer, the better your pictures will be.
Everyday — use the day as an opportunity to play. Play with your camera. Play with the visual world. Play with the chance to bend reality– to make it curl.
The world is your oyster; so make a perfect pearl.