Sometimes you’re just one decision away from experiencing something amazing. I have lived the majority of my adult life within the warm constraints of my cushy comfort zone, mostly always deflecting the possibility of doing something new… and with that, the fear of failing. You see for a perfectionist like myself, the fear of not producing good enough work is my kryptonite and possibly the biggest road block to my professional growth.
While I was out celebrating a friends birthday, the wine was flowing & I was approached to shoot a luxury catamaran, interiors, detail shots and lifestyle… Having never shot any of these things intentionally during my past 7 years as a studio photographer i gulped down my fear of failure (possibly it was just another mouth-full of wine) as I made the split second decision to say YES. The next few weeks were a barrage of thoughts and emotions about what could ultimately be an epic fail, until the day finally arrived.
It was a sunny Saturday, I got to the boat early and scoped out every inch. Trying to get my head around how I was going to pull this off before a flood of people arrived for lifestyle shots and what was to be a super cruisey ride around Sydney Harbour. As I arrived I was introduced to a Stylist to which I openly admitted ‘i’m out of my depth here, I’ve never done anything like this before’. I think I felt this might cover me slightly, in the event I looked like a complete fauxtographer… In my mind I was screaming ‘I’m a professional photographer, I swear!’ To which she replied ‘don’t worry, I’ve never done this either’, I let out a literal sigh of relief. At least we’re both in the same boat (see what i did there). The day went by without a hitch as I started with detail shots, moved on to interior shots and once we set off around the harbour, I snapped what felt like a thousand lifestyle shots of everyone enjoying this glorious boat. As the day drew to a close the stylist whispered in my ear “not too bad for a couple of amateurs”…
She didn’t know how right she was.
Half way in, I recall thinking “man, I cant believe I’m getting paid for this” because in reality it really was a dream job. Not that it didn’t come without its challenges as all photoshoots do, but in that second i had a moment of self-realisation. The reality is that I have turned away countless jobs over the years, not because I didn’t want to do it, but because I thought I couldn’t possibly do it. I now see just how limiting that train of thought can be, and so here I am making the public pact that I will say YES MORE OFTEN and I urge you to as well… even when your head is telling you not to, when your anxiety is telling you all the things that could go wrong, take a sip of wine and say yes. And even if it isn’t the best thing you’ve ever done, allowing yourself to get outside of your comfort zone is the only way to truly evolve.