It's great to be progressive. Being ahead of the crowd and the current trend. Being foreword thinking in your approach to life does has its benefits but also a difficult task in continuing to stay current. What happens when the trend dies down? Do you automatically look for the next one and ride that wave? Or do you suffer the loneliness of building your own? Chasing what's "in" can be a lost cause in the long run. Understand that time is not just what is only unfolding before you. It's also a collection of what has already been. The bulk of my work has been built on the minds of many masters before me. The only thing that's new is by personal take on the timeless concepts and subjects. Figuring out the foundations created by the giants passed has helped shaped my unique style. Using, molding and transforming ancient ideas into a modern context.
“Create The Future Through The Past ”
We all can try and reinvent the wheel. But most of the time someone else has done it before. Photography hasn't been around for long. There's already a number of people who have innovated and set new standards for the art. If you wish to be one of them then it's your job to seek who these individuals were and are today. Be it in fashion, fine art or photojournalism, get to know the characters behind the spectacular works of art. Any visit to your local library will show you many examples of great artists and get to know your history. That way you'll be able to peek into the minds of those who have dedicated their entire lives to the art.
A lot of times you'll discover not just amazing work, but the exceptional characters that these men and women have. Observing their lives has given me an insight into the creed and oath they lead and the passion they have for their work. Studying the best has made me realize that their work and their life are one in the same. Many talk about work and life balance but most of the cases I've seen have been quite the opposite. Work and the never ending search for the vision is what drives them. Day, night, cold, hot or anything in between. No checking out after 5pm here. Passion overrides all social rules in the search for that next level in mastery. It takes a lot of work to become an originator of an idea. Many have become great copyists but there's something about that slight edge to become someone who has achieved an original idea and even more courage and conviction to pursue its completion.
“Authenticity Comes With A Dare To Be Yourself”
Being unafraid of your style no matter all the obstacles is a tough way to live your life. Your style and voice is what defines your work. Even when your not loved for it. Coming from an authentic place will eventually make your work stand out but it requires a lot of courage to stand firm in your true expression. There are millions of creatives out there all trying to make a mark on the world. Many looking for those desperate 5 minutes to shine in the spotlight. But a lot of the best ones out there will never be heard or noticed. The fact is, all the fame and recondition is secondary to the reasons why they create. The work they create is the ultimate satisfaction. Nothing more. Everything else is just icing on the cake. If they could keep creating the work they love and continue to live that way then the prize has already been attained.
These same people create the new standards in whatever means of expressions they're called to. Any era in music or art is built upon an original idea used collectively. Which in turn creates the trend. But the true master never succumbs to the wave forever. They will always be searching within themselves to find the evolution of the vision. Which can disappoint the fans and followers along the way. There are many pitfalls and traps when continuing your journey for mastery and requiring a tremendous amount of will power and discipline to continue on this journey.
As you get better in your craft know that you can always refer to those who have done things before you. Studying the works of the masters will help you find the ideas that you have probably already though yourself to be refined and complete. It's up to you to take those same ideas and make them your own. Standing on the shoulders of giants may seems like your taking an easy shortcut but in fact what your doing is creating a new bridge to have future masters stand on your own. Make sure the foundation you build is sturdy and strong enough for the next generations to come.
Chris From MKMI Photo