Houston Award Winning Baby Photographer
Well…the last few weeks have been quite exciting here at the studio! Three amazing things happened that are way too much to put into one post so here goes part 1.
Let’s talk about vulnerability for a minute. Obviously, photography is my passion. I eat, sleep and breathe this art and it fills my soul. Turning this obsession into a business 6 years ago was one of the most frightening things I’ve ever done. It took all my courage to put my work out into the world and say “Hello world, this is what I do. I really hope you like it enough to pay me for all my hard work and effort.” The world can be a big, scary, harsh place. I still feel so lucky and honored that so many families trust me to capture their most precious memories. I’ve always been big on education….always striving to do better…to be better. I’m also a bit of a Type A perfectionist so I’m my own worst critic! I want to be a master…a true craftsman and artist. I joined The Professional Photographer’s of America (PPA) years ago for the support, guidance and learning opportunities. It’s been an amazing resource for me. This Spring, I was finally brave enough to enter my first photo competition, the Southwest Regionals. I worked hard on my 4 images and waited nervously for the results. Well…I got slammed! It was a major blow to the ego to put my passion out there for some of the top artists in my craft to slash to bits. One of the four photos barely squeaked into a merit (above average skill) worthy score. Yep…vulnerability at its finest and I was devastated. I’m a failure. I’m a fraud. I’m not an artist. What do I do now?
I will admit there was a lot of pouting and depression. Then came the anger. Wait a minute…my clients really seem to like what I do and I like what I do. What’s going on here? Obviously I’m not the best in the world but I’m not awful and my career self-worth shouldn’t depend on the subjective view of these masters. I talked with mentors and friends in the industry, did a lot of self reflection and a lot more reading. I put my big girl pants on and said I am an artist. I am better. I will succeed in eyes of my peers as I feel I have succeeded in my own heart and that of my clients. And back to the drawing board I went.
In July, I submitted 4 new images to The PPA’s annual International Photographic Competition (IPC). This is basically the largest and most prestigious photo competition in the industry. From the PPA website: “A panel of 46 jurors from across the United States selected the top photographs from nearly 5,700 total entries from July 31 to August 4 at Gwinnett Technical College in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Judged against a standard of photographic excellence, the best of the best were selected for the General and Loan Collections. Images accepted into the General and Loan Collections will be on display at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas, Jan. 8-10, 2017, during Imaging USA, the annual convention and tradeshow for professional photographers. These images constitute one of the world’s largest annual exhibits of professional photography gathered simultaneously under one roof. “There simply is no better way to improve as a photographer than to enter competition and learn from the process during the preparation of the entry and after the fact when receiving the critiques of the images,” said IPC chairman, Randy McNeilly. This photographic competition challenges photographers to grow their artistic and technical skills by creatively capturing and presenting their best images.”
I’m so excited to announce that 3 of my images were chosen for the General Collection and will be on display with the best of the best in January and I’ve earned credits toward my Master of Photography designation. I can honestly say that my first experience with image competition was an amazing exercise in understanding that my worth as an artist is within me and under my control. I feel as though I have grown through this process and while it is such a thrill to be recognized by the masters for that, I understand that only I can truly determine the value of my work. I am an artist.
Thank you so much to all my amazing friends, family and clients who have supported and believed in me. Your love means the world to me!
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The Queen B Photography is a contemporary Houston baby photographer serving Sugar Land, West University, Bellaire, River Oaks, The Heights, Memorial, Sienna Plantation, Richmond, Rosenberg, Spring, The Woodlands, Cypress, Katy and surrounding areas.