Since the start of the internship it has been a learning process on so many levels so I am happy to be a part of this experience.
But its evaluation time!!!!!!!!
So I have to evaluate my progress and the process of this internship.
First of all, let me say I am happy with the internship. I am proud to be a Leah and Mark intern and I think that the confidence that came to me by simply accomplishing the goal of being chosen makes me proud of myself but that wasn’t my only goal.
I attempted to be an intern 3 times before and failed (with a smile). Each time I was rejected I kept pushing forward in my own journey always preparing for this time. I didn’t know why I needed to be an intern for Leah and Mark but I knew something was there that could help me. Now that I am apart of the internship I can say that this gave me the most hands on experience (when I was able to get a spot on a shoot) but most importantly it got me out of my comfort zone and gave me the courage to really pursue photography as a career.
I could wish I could have more shoots or whatever but it didn’t stop me from working on other aspects of my life as a photographer while being an intern.
I believe we are all in different area in our photography.
I am always down to learn new tips and tricks but at this point in my life I want to become a working photographer (emphasis on working). Period. Mark and I sat down and talked and that was probably the best thing for me at this time.
I needed advice and direction and still do.
Its cool to have mentors or look at others business from afar but never do you get a chance to really speak to them honestly about where you want to go. Most of the time they are coming from a perspective that I couldn’t fully grasp. However, through this internship I was able to speak to others who are CURRENTLY walking the path I hope to walk soon. Its is a wealth of knowledge just to soar with eagles sort of speak. I wouldn’t change that for the world.
Working in this internship you learn…..
You learn about yourself. Just trying to keep up with the pack is hard work!
You can see what you are not doing enough of, what you suck at, what you are good at and how to improve and put a plan to action.
I hope at the end of this process I will be working my plan a better plan than the one I thought of when I walked into the internship. I had to Rework and Refocus.
Its all good to make nice pictures but I think I did not have confidence to show and talk about my work or what I do with others.
I admire not only Leah and Mark, but the pluses Elaine, Krista, Mishaun because of their work ethic and that they all have to build their brands and businesses in today’s climate. My hat is off to you all!
Honestly, what truly attracted me to the internship wasn’t only the photography, it was their hustle.
I always say processing and editing styles are all subjective. Photography is OUR art but now to me the art has to be more more about business.
I am at a point in my life when I needed to make a decision and when I happened to run into Leah and Mark.com and looked at their story and backgrounds and I respected that the most. They chased their dreams and seem to be making great strides so I chased mine hoping one day I will be able to learn from Mark and the crew.
So now that I am an intern and our time is coming closer to an end I think HOW DO I FEEL?
Well with One month left and I am sweet and sour but its way more sweet than sour (sour only because I couldn’t get to a lot of events early on).
I do hope we have at least 2 more big photo shoots where we are all together before its over.
I started out worrying about learning how my camera works in various situations under pressure. Then on to getting models and working in various locations with time constraints and gaining rapport with them and work threw jitters to becoming comfortable with working with others. Then editing and processing of my images. Now on to wondering how do you effectively create and grow my own photography business.
So I am still working on learning my camera and working out my jitters and all that but that confidence comes in time.
As a former athlete I kind of been trained to the mindset to “practice how you play” and “the more reps you get in practice the easier the games are” so an internship like this give me ample opportunity to get more practice and quality opportunity to do well so when the time comes to become professional you have experiences like these in your back pocket.
But even if I practice and I make something I like this is about becoming a working photographer.
When, how, and who do I need to show my work to in order to make more work for myself? Those are the questions I have today that I am trying to answer.
What I truly wasn’t ready for was the hustle of it all.
When I met Mark one day to talk because I had a bunch of questions and concerns across the board which he answered with ease and I was very appreciative of that but when we started talking business I was realizing how much I need to do to really become successful as a photographer.
Equipment and editing styles are all subjective.
But how do I make money with my art, with my equipment and with my style of photography?
You see, I realized while talking to Mark, after he pretty much broke everything down plain and simple, that my issues about technical things were not really issues. They were actually masking what I truly had an issue with and that is finally “hoping off the porch” and getting out there and hustling up more business.
I was not showing enough people my work and myself as a photographer.
I simply wasn’t meeting enough of the right people.
I wasn’t doing enough blogging (still have a problem with that).
I have not made goals for how many people to meet and in different markets that interested me. I was just wasn’t being specific i my approach.
I was so concerned about all the other things technically, equipment wise, processing and all that that I shied away from putting myself out there as a photographer for hire.
I wasn’t doing enough meetings. I wasn’t working enough for myself.
That needs to change!
I was not giving myself enough confidence to approach people and offer services because I was worried about what other photographers who’s work I felt was better than mine and I thought . But who cares? Who knows that they are better unless I say so. If I need to
Mark told me “whats the point on sitting quiet there and not asking because its on them to say yes or no.” He told me to, “rework my strategy and keep it simple and keep a focus.”
So since then I been busy doing exactly that.
I made my list of contacts, places and industries that I felt I need to speak with right now.
This has helped.
Another hurdle that I am trying to balance is TIME MANAGEMENT!!!!!
It is hard (but extremely rewarding) being a husband and father of two but I never could imagine how much time it takes to create your own business while balancing that until I started my own.
I tip my hat to ALL who trying to do the same in any field!
I worked retail and other jobs and I can clearly remember myself saying “THIS SUCKS!!! I need to work for myself.” Now that I am, I realize it’s no easier just more rewarding.
“Being a photographer is more about meeting people and building relationships than actual photography,”Mark said..
This is not 9-5.
This is all day, all night, every place you go to everyone you meet. People have to know that this is what you do so you can get business. Then we step back and be cool because after all we are photographers right? We make people, places and things look good (or bad). They need us! We just have to be accessible for them.
Yes, if you ask me today am I a better photographer 2/3 the way through the internship I would say with confidence YES!
But the why I am not working to the level I want to be? Is the question that I hope to overcome by the end of my time with Leah and Mark but that is a personal battle. The last push is upon me and I am hoping to get more opportunities but more importantly I hope to create a few shoots. I need to go all out and set up a project and see it through before my time ends.
So my last goals are to do as many things as I can with the internship and I would want to set up a shoot and see it through. Start to finish.
The only thing stopping me is me all the way across the board.
It starts with me. My hustle. So everyday I’m hustlin.
Last lap folks lets finish STRONG!!!!! #Internarmy