I rarely post my thoughts on this blog but today after Tara’s Loving Our Selfies post, my messages blew up.  Obviously, it was something that I needed to read right NOW.  So I sat down at the computer and read her post (btw in case you were wondering I read everyone’s posts.  It is usually the last thing I do at night).

Initially, yes, at first glance I could see why my phone was blowing up.  But that is just one side of the story.  As I read deeper into it I saw the true meaning of the blog post today.

People will naturally and understandably be upset when they do not win the HOT 100 or whatever image competition they enter.  Unfortunately, that is the nature of a image competition.  You will have images that are technically proficient, composed well, etc.  And then there are images that  do not receive as high of merits.  Trust me, I get it and I don’t take it lightly.  I enter image competitions and submit my work.  Sometimes my images are selected and other times they are not selected.  Yes it stings, but I then go and look at what won and realize that their images or their submissions were pretty amazing.  That knowledge is then channeled into how can I raise the bar so it can be me next time?  It is difficult as creatives to put our work out there.  Not winning feels like a personal attack to ourselves…which btw is never the case but again I understand because I know how hard it is to put yourself out there.

Remember, an image competition does not reflect your character or your personality.  It is about the image not even your whole body of work.  It is about the image or images you submit to the image competition.

Apparently the million dollar question was…what were my thoughts on Tara’s post (which btw this is not the first time she has addressed image competitions and submissions in her blog posts for us)?

So hear goes…I felt it was exactly what we strive to put out into the industry.  It was raw, it was transparent, it was REAL.  Anything less would be discounting how those who have not won a image competition feel.  That is not what we want to do at SSG.

We embrace other blogs and publications whom we feel are working towards bettering this industry. So I am happy that she put out there unedited what she felt and shared her inner angst choosing images for Seniorologie’s contest.  And yes, I am glad she is entering.  This shows true growth.  She is not letting a loss be the end of her or a setback.  She is moving forward and putting herself out there.

If I didn’t get back up after each and every no, I would not have SSG or my photography business.  My motto is and always will be…”No means not yet”.  If you let NO define you there will never be the opportunity for a YES.

I also spoke with Tara and I know where her heart lies.  She eloquently wanted to motivate anyone who was feeling down for not winning any image competition or not being picked up for a submission in the past.  She wrote from the heart and did not strive to have any malicious intent toward SSG or any other publication out there.  This is why she is a columnist for us.  She quickly offered to alter her post while we were on the phone and I told her she was not to touch it.  Editing it would be censoring how she felt.  It would also be discounting what others felt.  Our job is to acknowledge not discount others.

Tara said she was writing out how she felt and what she was going through so she could share with our readers.  So hopefully they could relate and be motivated by the simple act she is putting herself out there again.

Had it been censored it would have been a one sided blog post.  She does not write one sided blog posts.  And anyways, how boring would that be?  Imagine if we only got one side of the news on every channel and every website?  As members of the photography community it is our jobs to get the whole story…and my friends here it is.

Happy Holidays,