Do you know the feeling of standing before an imaginary mountain that you have to climb? This mountain being a task to do, a skill to learn or something else. A mountain that can seem almost impossible to climb or at least very overwhelming.
That is exactly how I felt when I in 2022 decided to make a switch from Photography to Videography. I knew I would have to “suck” at making videos while I learned the ins and outs and that’s just after I finally felt comfortable with photography.
You see, I used to be an IT Consultant, as I’ve mentioned in the previous email. Something completely different from the creative space I’m in now. A job I used to love but that I found to be the wrong path during the pandemic when I had a bit too much time to think.
The switch to going freelance as a creative and later switching from photography, which used to be my hobby, to videography, felt like huge mountains I had to climb.
I’ll be completely honest with you here. It’s not been easy. It’s actually been quite the struggle to get to where I am today, which is still nowhere near where I want to be. But, it’s all slowly coming together and some things just take time. And all of that said I’m very happy and proud of my journey so far.
The 3 main things I’ve learned from this journey so far in the perspective of climbing the imaginary mountain are the following:
- You need to suck before you can be great
- You need to do the same thing more than 1000 times to become great at it
- You need to take one step at a time, lean back, enjoy the process and embrace the fact that it’ll take time to reach the top
I know it’s cliché to say “practice makes the master”, “consistency is key” and “enjoy the process, not the result” but I find all those are true. Without those, I would burn out or lose interest before I get to where I want.
All the hacks and shortcuts we’re being fed through short-form content in this day and age are either clickbait or something only very few can achieve. So, instead of trying to go fast and become great in no time, my recommendation is to take your time, invest in your skills and learn from your mistakes. This way you’ll become much better, much faster.
To back up my thoughts on this, here’s a peek at what I’ve done for the last 1,5 years since I went freelance and did my own thing:
- I spent the first 6 months fumbling around with photography and trying all sorts of paths to make money, all from affiliate marketing, youtube, podcast, selling prints and much more. Few succeeded but I learned something from all of them.
- I spent the next 6 months learning how to shoot video and exposing my camera along with diving deep into Color Grading as the step I felt was missing from the start, seeing I came from photography and was used to making the colours look great with a RAW photo.
- I spent the next 6 months re-building my business from scratch, focusing on my new-found niche of Color Grading and figuring out how to market and sell myself and my digital products.
- I will spend the next 6 months continuing what I’m already doing while constantly improving and learning from what I see isn’t working and trying to understand the areas in which I’m doing it right.
So, my path hasn’t exactly been straightforward and I know it won’t be in the future as well but I’m starting to see everything come together and with all my past learnings I am way more confident in my skills as a filmmaker and colourist today. This foundation is what will bring me further but I had to climb those mountains before I could get here - and the only way to do that was to take one step at a time.
So I’ll end this post on the note of whatever mountain you’re about to climb or currently climbing, look at your feet take a step at a time, take it slow and make sure you go at a pace you can keep going at. Keep repeating the same things repeatedly until they become second nature and before you know it, you’re a long way into your journey and have learned a lot more than you ever thought.
🏔️ I haven't climbed a mountain in real life myself but I know that sometimes you have to climb up to get used to the air and then back down a bit to sleep. I also know that you won't get to the top faster by sprinting up the mountain, rather you'll get too exhausted to even get to the top. So, I've applied this analogy to my own life and keep telling myself that every day. Take it slow, one step at a time and you'll get a lot further than if you start off sprinting.
It’s easy to forget to celebrate the small incremental improvements but remember to look back at where you were once in a while and appreciate how far you’ve come already! No matter what kind of journey you’re on.
Thanks for reading along!
I’ll catch you in the next post!