This quote couldn’t be more relevant for me right now especially since I’m juggling various projects, both client and creative projects of my own. What freelancer wouldn’t want to over prepare and be two….three…ten steps ahead of the game?
Over-planning makes a world of difference in getting work, being prepared for lulls in business, and keeping clients happy.
I’m a guilty over-planner and it’s not a negative admission by any means…it’s like admitting perfectionism as a weakness at a job interview…I mean, really? ; )
Being super prepared is what rockstar freelancers do and it’s a valued mark of professionalism…but what if, in the process you sort of prioritize the plan and overlook the essence of exactly what it is that draws clients to you to begin with?
In the context of shooting pictures, the most amazing shots will sometimes emerge on their own. It happens during casual blogger shoots or family shoots…it even happens in the most structured of photo shoots. For instance, a model taking a quick break with her feet kicked up on a sofa might actually end up making a better lifestyle shot than the original one intended of her acting like she’s relaxing (kind of a true story).
Art is really just an imitation of life after all.
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Recently, I had a call with a potential client who told me my style resonated with their brand, whose mantra was along the lines of “perfectly imperfect.” I loved that, it seemed so appropriate for how I like to shoot.
About a week later on a completely different call, my client jokingly suggested that they just purchase the images from my Instagram feed since they felt those simple, casual moments best captured their brand.
That was an eye-opener…the realization that clients are automatically drawn to the work I make when I’m technically not working and just making pictures I really like.
So lately I’ve been carving out time for creativity and for play…a throwback to the days when I photographed without any intention of anyone ever seeing my work. I’ve been shooting more and keeping that work to myself.
Since I’ve started creating more intentionally for myself, I’m already starting to notice a little bit of a difference in my creative process. For one thing, I’m better at being creative on a moment’s notice because creating intuitively becomes so ingrained in how I think if I do it for myself first. Also, carving out time to be creative has totally helped me reinforce my style, recognize the importance of not being afraid to experiment. This has allowed me to be more confident in throwing impromptu ideas during client photo-shoots when I think it makes sense. It’s like the cherry on top of a delicately layered sundae.
So yeah, I’ve been more appreciative of moments of serendipity and have started to take my personal time more seriously, allowing some magic to slowly creep back into my world. – xo , CM