I was reading through Chase Jarvis’ latest post “Escaping Your Portfolio” and it got me to thinking. I’ve always been a believer of “Showing what you want to be or what you shoot”, meaning that your portfolio should only consist of the things that you want to be shooting creatively. That doesn’t mean we won’t take paying jobs that don’t relate to our portfolios, but the idea is VISION, mean your vision and how you see. This I believe is a definite MUST in our world, and as Chase puts it, a necessary evil. Your vision starts to come together after you’ve been shooting for a few years, and you start to hone in on your style. It takes quite a while to get just a grasp of what that is as an artist, and a process that we must all embrace. Patience is the key. (not that I’ve had much of it over the last few years, but it’s what my mentors keep telling me.) Hiring the right people (consultants, graphic designers, reps, etc) to curate/edit and package your work is the other key. So strive for the perfect portfolio? Not necessarily. Strive to create your style/vision and continue to update your portfolio. If you are shooting all the time, your work and vision will evolve, as will your portfolio.
The point of my post is that his post did push me to think about pushing my brand beyond just “taking pictures” and into the other interests and facets that I aspire to. That’s one reason I’ve never attached “Photography” to my name. My goal is to push my brand into as many creative ventures as I can, and that in and of itself is a process. Is directing commercials in my future goals? Yeah. In what capacity, I have no idea. I’ve already begun a little (see my videos/stop motions). Maybe fine art? Maybe a clothing line, a restaurant, a bar? I have many other dreams and goals that take time and process. Remember being successful at something takes a lot of hard work. (10,000 hours perhaps?) In the end, I want my brand/name to be a creative entity, not limited to just photography.
With photography, the body of work you develop over a few years will evolve and will
progress, and eventually be in your Default Bag so that you can explore
other opportunities. Eventually you will have the staff to free your time to work on the projects you want to.