#liveauthentic. But really do it

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Time and time again I see stories in my photography groups about people having work stolen. Sometimes it it images, sometimes it is words, or other content. But now matter what there are always feelings of hurt and anger. 

At times these people are just general public, other times it is a business that doesn't want to pay. But in my opinion the worst is when it is another industry person. Another photographer, or videographer, or designer. Someone that should know better. So here is what this blog post is about. 

NO ONE ELSE NEEDS TO FAIL IN ORDER FOR YOU TO SUCCEED 

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You as an individual has the power to set yourself up to succeed. But also to fail. 

When you steal others images in order to gain clients. You will fail. You will get found out and the photography community will rain down a fury that would send Zeus himself into hiding. That would be the easy way out. Worse you will gain a client by showing skills that you do not have, and when images are delivered, they will be disappointed and angry. You may have a lawsuit, you may not. But never the less, you will not last long. You will not succeed. 

This is not an easy job. Yes at times we get to travel and it looks super exciting, and yes we do love it because it fuels a creative fire within us. But what you do not see is the years of working multiple jobs in order to afford gear. The shooting weddings and sessions that were not a good fit, because we did not know any better. The tears, the anger and the despair when after pouring everything into a wedding, the client only has anger and makes you want to quit. 

But all these things are what sharpens you. What builds you up and crafts you into not just an artist, but a business person. You need to make mistakes in order to grow. You cannot, and no one has ever gone from 0 to Pro. It is a long road. 

Adventure Photographer

NO ONE ELSE NEEDS TO FAIL IN ORDER FOR YOU TO SUCCEED 

This also means that when you get jealous, or angry that you are not at ________ photographers level. Or you just want to book more that you can find an easy path. Trying to defamate someones character or business will not lead to your success. Taking copy from a website, or passing of images as you own will not lead to your success. In fact you will fall faster than you thought possible. 

What will lead to your success?  

I am sorry but the only answer is work. Get out and create. Shoot more. 

Be who you are. Don't try and be another photographer. You will not capture their market share or their clients. Go after different ones. 

Shoot sessions that will fuel your soul. Do them for free as long as they work for you. 

Don't shoot for free when it will suck your soul dry.

Practice. Get out of facebook groups that breed jealousy and popularity and contempt. 

Practice. 

As Rihanna says 

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The more you build into yourself, the better you will become.