Shoot & Share // THE Contest 2018
Last year, after entering The Photo Contest at the last minute, I swore that I would be more organized this year with the photos that I wanted to submit. Most of the time now I know almost immediately when a frame that I’ve shot is one that I’m going to love, and it was those that I had planned on putting aside, organized into category of course, so that when this years submission window opened I’d be ready.
None of that happened.
December, however, saw the first drafts of the 2017 look book (more on that at a later date) and with that, a file of the years bests and favorite images were complied. Better late than never. Sitting down and narrowing it down to 50 frames though, that was markedly harder.
As I was getting ready to write this post, I read back through 2017’s Photo Contest Posts (which you’ll find linked below) and I came to a realization. A light bulb moment of sorts.
Talk about a subtle nod from the universe to take a second and reflect.
Two years ago, at the end of January, I left corporate America and I haven’t looked back since. (Real Talk :: I’ve probably looked in every other direction, but back sure as hell hasn’t been one of them.)
How cool is it that The Contest and the anniversary of my freedom come at the same time. Talk about a subtle nod from the universe to take a second and reflect.
Looking through my favorite photos from the past year, and then looking through my submissions to the 2017 Photo Contest, gave me a forced then vs. now comparison of my work. I shocked myself. It was so much more than just a moment to reflect, it reminded me how important balance is. From time to time I’ll see others post a then v. now with their work, and it’s always fun to watch and celebrate others progresses with them, but I’d been so focused on the working side of things to really stop and really look at my own body of work.
We can so easily get caught up in the day to day side of working (life) and forget to stop and celebrate our own wins when it comes what we do. And very realistically, if we don’t celebrate them, no one else will either. It’s easy to focus on the details and the minutiae, and to get caught up in them, but we HAVE to take the time to celebrate also.
It’s always fun to watch and celebrate others successes with them, but what about our own?
As excited as I am for voting to open, (and let’s be real, the first few days voting opens, I, like all us, will be glued to my screen voting, and will probably rope everyone I know into spending at least some quality time voting on theirs), that reminder to stop, and take a moment to really look at how far I’ve come in the last two years, I’m so grateful.
I can’t wait to see what the industry has been working on over the past year, because photographer or not, voting will inspire you. And it will hook you.