As many of you who follow me on Facebook know, this past week has been CRAZY. I flew to Nashville last Sunday, ended up in Kansas City by mid-week, and finally made it back home sweet home around one o'clock this morning. I'm exhausted and overwhelmed, but so thankful that my job allows me to visit family and friends and experience new places and things.
Last Tuesday, while in Nashville, I had the awesome opportunity to attend theFIX at the aVenue (a beautiful venue, by the way... I'm looking forward to Brittany+Jeff's reception there in the fall). I was excited to be at the event not only because I love Jasmine Star (y'all know i love me some J*... girl's got charisma like no other and is just a fountain of talent and smarts), but also because I knew I'd get to see my girl Ashley, who's helping out as part of the crew of theFIX tour.
Before the event, a group of those of us attending went out to dinner (a million thanks to Cory for coordinating) and I am so honored to have met so many friendly, enthusiastic, talented, and fun photographers that I now call my friends. I look forward to keeping up with all of you (in person and via the web) and watching your businesses grow!
I have mad respect for Jasmine and her openness and integrity in an industry filled with "secrets" and naysayers, and her message at this event provided just the dose encouragement and honesty that I needed to hear right now. Throughout the evening, among other things, she talked about her own business, allowing the struggles to be part of your journey, identifying and emphasizing your strengths, and breaking the mold by being you.
But perhaps the most important thing I heard from Jasmine last Tuesday was the real need for photographers to stop trying to keep each other down and instead, connect with one another. Not just because it will help us survive and thrive in this business (which it will) but because we truly want to see each other succeed. I believe that caring about people and helping one another will get us much further than concerning ourselves with being envious, rude or secretive because of the so-called competition.
We are much stronger together than we are apart.
In the words of J*, can I get an amen?
I know, I know... I'm really starting to sound like a broken record with reiterating this sort of message in my blog posts, but I am so passionate about seeing my peers succeed. I am passionate about helping others. I am passionate about my own business. And I know that we will be more powerful, innovative, and successful as an industry once we learn to not only work together, but to be friends, encouragers, mentors, and supporters.
That all being said, here are a few photos I snapped at the event...
Jasmine, me, and Ashley - aren't these two ladies just lovely? (Please pay no mind to my incredibly fake smile - ahem, Ashley's fault - or the extreme paleness - I need a good dose of Vitamin D ASAP)