I honestly can't even count up the number of times I failed this year. When you are your own boss and there is no corporate training, you learn as you go, and mainly from failure. I completely missed an important shot at a wedding, mishandled a client, and shot an entire session out of focus. But you better believe I won't make those same mistakes twice.
Freelancing is a difficult uphill journey. Striving to be innovative and creative in a sea of talent can be overwhelming and discouraging. It's a rollercoaster of emotions. The highs and lows and happen so quickly, they give me whiplash.
Being a professional creative can be a foolish path to take. You are constantly subjected to criticism, both valid and invalid. There are always those more talented and successful to compare yourself to. And at the end of the day, good or bad, you are your own product. Your identity is wrapped in your performance and work.
But against all logic, we must be determined to find confidence and pride in ourselves and our work, not seeking validation from others approval but from our own growth and journey. For it is because of, not in spite these struggles that creative work can be filled with power meaning and depth. I'm grateful for the year full of ups and downs, for each moment brought opportunity for growth.
In La La Land, Mia is at her ropes end after endless rejection and a failure of her one woman show. When she finally gets a big audition, she sums up the cycle of struggle and success in a creative's life, and why they are both necessary to honestly create.
Here's to the ones who dream
Foolish, as they may seem
Here's to the hearts that ache
Here's to the mess we make
She told me:
A bit of madness is key
to give us to color to see
Who knows where it will lead us?
And that's why they need us,
So bring on the rebels
The ripples from pebbles
The painters, and poets, and plays
So here's to 2017, 🍻, May you grow and learn from your past self, and may it be full of fulfilling success and meaningful failures, mixing into a stronger, deeper and more beautiful life.