After I wrote my post about how to build confidence as a photographer, I thought of a few more ways and wanted to share them with you.
1. Share Yourself.
I really believe in sharing. For this example, I’m talking about sharing your talent. Most people would say that if they could save anything from their burning home, it would be their photographs. As photographers, I think we do something really special. So I say share your gift. Yes, share, even if you are in business. Here are a few ideas on how you can share your talents:
-Take your camera to a friend’s birthday party and take a few pictures. I’m not talking about 200 of photos of the entire event. Take 1 or 2 of the whole family while blowing out candles so your friend can be in the photos with her birthday child instead of taking the pictures.
-Bring your camera to the park and take photos of your Mom friends pushing their children on the swings.
-Offer to take your best friend and her family to a park and take some photos for them together.
-If you are in business, go to the park for an hour (with your biz cards) and offer to take a photo or two of families spending time together. Ask them to e-mail you for the photo. No strings attached. If they ask you why, tell them you are “paying it forward.” Tell them you just finished up a family session a while ago and wanted to keep shooting. You might have people turn you down—but putting yourself out there is a confidence builder in itself. Conquer your fear of rejection by staring it right in the face. You’ll live. Promise.
I’m talking about maybe 5 minutes of your time. Nothing huge to you. But it usually ends up being huge to them because everyone loves photographs of their family.
Here’s the thing about sharing. It is ALWAYS going to make you feel as good as the person on the receiving end of your talents. The person receiving the photograph will probably gush about how wonderful the photo is and is sure to appreciate it. When I find myself low on confidence when it comes to photography, this is the first thing I do. I start finding a way to make photography about others instead of myself. It works every.single.time.
2. Fail. And then turn it around.
I started a Project 365 in November. I quit on March 31st. No reason, no excuses. Just an epic failure. I thought about just erasing the whole project from my blog because it’s kind of embarrassing that I totally failed at something I said I would do.
And then I realized I was missing something bigger than failing at a Project 365.
I ROCKED A PROJECT 150!
Flip your failures around. Shake them out. Find the lesson. Turn your so-called failure into a temporary defeat.
When I got my very first DSLR, I was so amazed at the kind of pictures I was now able to take. I was pretty sure I was going to be the next Ansel Adams.. When I look at those photos now, I cringe and laugh at how great I thought were.
Every so often, I pull out a photo I took in the beginning of my photography journey and try to re-create it now with all the knowledge and skills I’ve acquired along the way.
It is sure to boost your confidence when you see how much you’ve grown in your craft.