Sponsored by Eizo
I was going to title this blog ‘Stand Out Photo Forum Wrap Up’, but I don’t think that would have truly conveyed how deeply appreciative I am for being invited to the Stand Out Photo Forum. So… ‘New Friends, New Memories, and a World of Opportunity’ will just have to do.
Next year will make 6 years since I picked up my first DSLR (a small Canon Rebel XSI) and it’s been a whirlwind ever since. While 6 years may not sound like much time at all, truth be told it has been. That’s 2,190 days of victories and failures. 2,190 days of great times and 2,190 days of hard lessons. Adding it all up together, it can really change your perspective on the world.
Time has this unfortunate effect of changing people and making them feel jaded with the world. When I was 22 years old, I enrolled in several workshops with photographers who had a long career behind them, but for some reason or another were no longer as financially successful as they had been in their prime. Jaded minds uttered jaded words. “Photography isn’t what it used to be.”
I still hear that line all the time. “Photography isn’t what it used to be.” Those 7 words irk me to very core. Why? Because it’s like saying, “I tried and failed. If you’re going to try, you’re to fail so why bother?” That’s probably the most self centered thing anyone can ever say aloud in my opinion.
That’s why so I’m appreciative of the Stand Out Photo Forum. It reminded me that there are other people in the photography industry who TRULY believe in the art and who are committed to the business of photography. They are finding their UNIQUE way to leave a mark in the world and I was appreciative of their perspective.
The best part? I would say they were all NEW fresh perspectives... but that's not the case whatsoever. Mr. Albert Watson joined us in Chicago and enlightened us newbies about his 40+ years as a working professional... and all I can say is that I soaked up as much info as I could. Thank you for that.
Clay – I appreciate your story about climbing to Mount Kilimanjaro. It reminded me that if you can dream it – and you’re willing to work for it, then you can do it.
Bella – I appreciate your creativity and bubbly personality. It reminded me to always look at the world with positive eyes. Thank you infinitely for putting up with my shenanigans.
Pratik – I appreciate your truth. It’s a unique thing to see someone so sincere and cautious with their words and equally as meticulous with their vision.
Most of all… thank you to the sponsors who invested in us as artists and who want to see growth in our community. Without you, none of that would have ever been possible.
I wanted to also send a special thank you to Eizo for working alongside me in 2016. It means the world to work alongside a company who truly believes in me as a person, a professional and more so as an artist.