My trip to New Zealand earlier this year helped me remember the importance of forcing yourself out of your comfort zone for self improvement. Whether it's climbing a mountain or escaping a blizzard, the feeling of vulnerability challenged me and helped me better understand how I react under pressure.
I was standing on top of a mountain in New Zealand in the middle of a blizzard, feeling cold, disorientated and alone; this was totally out of my element considering I had spent the last year sitting in an office in a nice suit sipping coffee all day. I found that my natural instinct when the blizzard first hit the mountain was to do what felt most comforting to me - hide from the wind behind a rock and huddle up.
Nobody would have come to my assistance that day and I had no means of contacting other people for help. I would never have made it down the mountain that day and helped my friend (who I later discovered had passed out in a hut at the base of the mountain) if I hadn't broken through my lack of comfort. It made me ponder about my own comfort levels in various situations - both at work and in my personal life.
In retrospect, getting through that day reminded me of the attitude I had when first starting this journey and I came to the realisation of how complacent and weak minded I had become the the year before.
When I was a 16 year old boy, I would always strive to experience new things and not let certain social ideals confine my decision; I would throw myself into new surroundings without a second thought. These experiences helped me gain many valuable skills that aided me later on in life, especially the interpersonal skills. These early risks helped me make significant leaps in my career, that enabled me to achieve many years worth of experience before my friends even graduated high school.
To the people still studying, this isn't a recommendation to leave school; you must be able to appreciate the importance of education, yet not be hesitant to question it. A course or an online tutorial will not lead you to success but provide you with the relevant knowledge to achieve your goals. There is no defined trajectory to reach your goals. The knowledge your mentors provide you are the metaphorical bullets that you must aim at the desired target.
Andy! What what the fuck did I read! I want to know about cameras that improve my photography n shit not this wisdom bullshit. You're such a fucken scam omg fml just wasted 5 minutes of my life reading irrelevant stuff. Bring back the pics! No more posts with big words
Meet Steezy. He is named after my teenage alter-ego.
Steezy is not a magical camera that will change your photography overnight, merely a tool. I bought this camera from a Ukrainian bloke name Grevorg a few months ago to challenge myself and force myself out of my comfort zone. It is a manual focus, manual exposure, manual winding film camera. It weighs a ton, it's unergonomic, it's known to be unreliable and you look like a creep carrying this around; however, it is a tool that has aided the improvement my photography dramatically. Shooting with this camera and it's unusual characteristics has helped me become more methodical and precise in my art marking process. Each time I load a roll of film (which costs a fortune) I only have twelve shots; I cannot delete the image if I don't like it, nor can I see the image until it has been developed and scanned.
It has taught me to value each frame, a lesson that has passed over from my personal projects to my professional work, vastly reducing my workflow and increasing the quality of my work.
Following my path may not lead yield similar improvements in your own photographic process, but taking a jump into the unknown and continuing your photographic journey will.
This isn't a #humblebrag success story, this is my journey. Like you, I still have a long way to go.
Share this journey with me.
People of interest
To my two lovely former bosses who re-inspired me to take the jump and do something bold
and supported me with unwavering enthusiasm even when I was sometimes doing a shit job.
And to my collaborator, business partner and friend with whom I travelled New Zealand with.
Many of my achievements in the last year would not have been possible without your input.