Hey there! As my regular readers know, I’ve been posting about finding your personal calling or your “personal legend” since last few weeks. Today is the fourth post in this series. (You can check out previous posts here)
DREAMING Versus DOING
As I said last week, actually trying out something is very different from dreaming about it. You think you like to do something but if you do it consistently and regularly, you might feel differently.
Take my example. I thought I liked photography to the extent that I would make a career out of it. I decided to explore career opportunities in wedding photography. Turns out, professional photography is more about getting clients and post processing than actually clicking pictures which I enjoyed. I volunteered at one of my cousin’s wedding and the pictures turned out horrible. I couldn’t keep up with the demands of his parents and the wedding ceremony was moving pretty fast. Moreover, there were a lot of people who wanted their pictures clicked and I was the only photographer. I couldn’t take the pressure.
I believe that somebody else who is used to dealing with crowd and pressure of missing out important moments would have worked wonderfully in my place. The job wasn’t that tough but I didn’t like it. I decided not to pursue wedding photography anymore.
Where I failed
I wasn’t prepared enough
To start with, I didn’t have a good camera. Yes, I didn’t. How could someone be such an idiot as to forget the most important thing? I was overconfident. I thought my camera was nice enough. I was afraid if I bought a new one and failed, I would lose my money.
I didn’t research on what kind of rituals will be performed. I thought I knew how an Indian wedding goes. However, when I actually had to be there, I realized there are a lot of small ceremonies and customs I had never paid attention to.
I didn’t interview bride and groom beforehand. I didn’t know what they want. The bride didn’t know me well and thus wasn’t comfortable around me. It was a major factor of ruining their couple photographs. Getting to know the couple before the wedding will acquaint them with you. Once people are comfortable, they give natural and memorable shots.
I didn’t have any previous experience
This point can be ignored as I was just trying out. It wasn’t supposed to be that great. However, I wish I would have started small with simple assignments before taking a wedding shoot.
Keeping up with the circumstances
When I took this opportunity I had some idea of how difficult the job will be. However I failed to prepare myself for the unseen circumstances. The crowd and the poor lighting, it was a nightmare. No matter how detailed your plan is, something will definitely go wrong. In my case, everything went wrong.
What I could have done
First of all, I could have borrowed a good camera from a professional. I knew some professionals and they would have lended me their camera. But I didn’t ask.
Secondly, I should have researched. I should have interviewed and spent sometime with the couple. I should have prepared a list of the rituals so I would knew what to expect.
Lastly, I should have practiced with smaller assignments first. I should have gone to another wedding and clicked pictures without the pressure of me being the only photographer.
What I learned
It is this kind of real life experiences that let you discover more about yourself. You discover the particular aspects of something you actually like and can do under pressure. You may even discover new interests. I discovered that I should not be overconfident but I should always believe in myself. sometimes, taking a few deep breaths is all you need when you are under stress.
I assume you are working on your interests. If you already found something which clicks, congratulations! But if you have not, keep on trying. A week is a very small time to judge. Take more time. Keep on looking until you find something you both enjoy and get something out of. Something will go wrong, make a plan nevertheless. You might fail, try again. Change your approach, change your strategies.
The important thing is not to succeed, but to discover yourself.