Am I Competent Enough?
This is a question that rolls around my head every time I think of quitting my job and going it alone. Am I good enough to follow my passion, give up a well paid, well semi, well-paid job. Give up a car, pension. To become reliant on my ability as a photographer. Bearing in mind there are about 20 Wedding photographers in my town alone. I do not particularly want to do weddings but this is the road I am being pushed. I will need the income. technically I can tell you all the different aspects of an image. Framing, Depth of Field, how I focus attention, shutter speed, aperture. All of these things I can talk about. I can tell you about them and explain them. I can even discuss the merits of focal length. But the phrase keeps coming up. Am I competent enough?
Do my Images have what it takes to stand out in a crowd? When does photoshop stop being enhancing and become too much? Do I do this? Do I push beyond the good and go into the crass, over-saturated with garish colours. Oversharpened, with halos all around the subject. Can I do more than the dramatic last throes of the day?
What am I expecting from all of this? Striding across barren and bleak moorland. Battling the elements to get that one in a million shot. YOU know the one. It has been seen a million times before. I had expressed an interest to an American Photographer Josh Cripps, his website is HERE One of the parameters I laid down was not to go where loads of people went. No honeypot sites. I want mine to be unique. Money caused the issue here so I never went, the request languishes. It is waiting to be picked up. I look at other successful photographers and ask what have they got that I don’t have?
I keep looking at photographers in the UK. One I am aware of, based about an hour away, claims 7 years in the business, I checked out his linked in. Still in Uni. If I put all my experience down then it would come to over 40 years. Film and Digital. Why then do I have this crisis of confidence?
So it comes back to. Am I competent enough? here is my Instagram feed or to my Gallery. Please have a look and come back with some honest comments below. Here is the big question. Do I want to give up my job just to start again 9 or 12 months later? having spent a large chunk of savings to find out whether I can cut it or not. I know what my wife thinks, she thinks I am competent but is seriously concerned about money.
I have Goals I know what I want to do and where I want to be. Can I get there is the question? Do I practice enough and how long will it take. 10000 hours over a year is 27 hours a day. Over 2 years 13 hours a day and, 9 hours a day over 3 years. So forty years does cut it. But then I see so, so many other people all trying to do what I do and the doubts come in. Not as you might think in the depth of the night when everything is quiet. More in the day when I am watching youtube.
It comes down to this.
Apparently, there are a lot of photographers who are mediocre but having a good life based on being just good enough. If you want to do well, just be better than them.
Perhaps the person who said this would like to tell me how.