What’s Your Secret?

I often get questions from folks asking me how I did this or that. Or the most common question, “What’s your secret”? Well, I would love to say, here is my secret, and you could do it too, if you only do this or that. Alas, I can’t say that. What I can say, and will say, is that my success stems from an intense desire to learn and a “no quit” attitude. My journey began the day someone critiqued one of my images on Flickr and pointed out to me, rather rudely, I thought, at the time, the many flaws in my image and technique. Wow, what an experience that was. I was devastated for weeks. My feelings were so hurt. After the initial shock of not being the all knowing photographer I thought I was, I began to open myself up to looking at photography as a never ending learning experience. The one thing that has stuck with me is that no one looks at the same piece of art in the same way. Everyone will see something different. The process continues to this very day, my friends. It is never easy to listen to someone tear apart your piece of art, but, it is ever so gratifying to hear someone praise your accomplishments. Both are equally as important if you want to take ownership of your creativity.

My journey continued, learning to see what others saw and learning to accept the fact that maybe I didn’t know as much as I thought I did, which I might add, was a lesson in itself. I began to look into training courses, and finally ended up taking a couple courses from NYI, which were correspondence courses. It was probably one of the best things I have done for myself, not only because I learned just how much I didn’t know that I didn’t know, but because it opened the floodgates to my intense desire to learn and improve.

2 thoughts on “What’s Your Secret?

  1. Interesting journey of discovery – I'm impressed! I'm afraid I've always had the opposite problem: I assume I know nothing and that my work (be it photos, short stories, etc.) sucks. So I'm always more shocked by positive comments than negative. I expect the negative, so it hurts less when I hear it and I don't have to take it as personally. I'm not sure if this is a good mindset to have, or not… šŸ˜‰

  2. We all have our own stories and ways of learning, don't we? You, Jen, are a talent yet to be discovered. Keep having fun. I read your profile, about shooting birds. Very interesting. Funny how life turns out, isn't it? Thank you for your insights here. I enjoyed hearing about you.

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