Even now that he’s older, he’s still got that smile! I love George Clooney … but that’s not the point of this blog post. The point of this post is more about what George Clooney SAID. He got up in front of a whole room full of actors, actresses, producers, etc. and explained this. He said that award shows are always the same. You show up on cloud nine. You’re excited because you’ve been nominated and then two hours later, over 80% of the people in the room are immediately losers!! You go from being SO confident to being a LOSER in a matter of two hours! He admitted that it’s not the best feeling to lose but then he said something that stuck with me. He looked out at a room full of celebrities and he explained that really, there are no losers in that room. Everyone in that room is doing what they love. The fact that they are doing what fires them up and they are using their gifts means that they are living an extraordinary life….. they aren’t losing. Now I know there are a TON of celebrities that live empty, unfulfilling lives despite their money, fame and accomplishments. Ultimately, our true joy and satisfaction can only come from a relationship with Jesus. However, I still think there is a lesson here that can apply to the photography industry.
Now obviously, I know that we’re not all famous actors and actresses. However, I was reminded of a slight parallel in his speech that relates to our world. As I listened to George Clooney… one of the best actors of our time…say that “winning” isn’t really what it looks like, I thought about our industry. So often “winning” or “succeeding” is defined inaccurately. One of the common examples of this is when I hear photographers say “Well if you want to really make it, you have to teach one day!”. Welp, I have to say that I disagree whole heartedly.
Not everyone is a teacher… thank goodness for that!! Can you imagine how crazy our world would be if EVERYONE thought that they needed to TEACH someone something?! It would be unbearable! Not everyone was created to be an educator and that’s OK. It’s so important to realize this. I want the photography world to step back and really evaluate this. How did we get to a place where the ultimate “step” as a photographer was to host a workshop? That has just been the trend in the last few years.and while I’m a HUGE advocate for education… I don’t want anyone to think that they need to reach that level to “win”. Like George said, winning may not look like what you think it looks like. There is SO much more to aspire in our industry. Teaching for me is life-giving and encouraging but I didn’t become an educator and immediately felt “complete”…. like I had “arrived”. “Winning” in our industry can be defined in so many different ways and I just want to encourage photographers and any other creatives struggling with this to stop defining their steps by those that are a few steps ahead of them. There is such a FREEDOM in creating your own trajectory… and even greater freedom when you allow God to plan your steps!!
Happy Monday friends!