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Fear vs My First Shoot

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, "I believe that anyone can conquer fear by doing the things he fears to do, provided he keeps doing them until he gets a record of successful experience behind him."

I had all kinds of confidence as an armature or hobbyist photographer. I would take photos of my friends and their kids, bask in the complements so freely given to me about how "I have an eye" and that I should start my own photography business. I had no real pressure because I wasn't being paid and I was not responsible if the photos didn't turn out. I was doing them a favor by offering my free photography. I had done this for a few years.

Well, the day had come when I got a voicemail that left me ecstatic yet terrified. I was given an incredible opportunity to do a photo session for a publication of a national company. Panicked and full of fear I went back and forth over the decision to do this shoot. I knew this was a game changer for me. Fearful, I nearly said no. No because I now began to doubt myself. Was I really talented enough? Would they be happy with my work? I now had become responsible for how the photos turned out, and let's not forget the fact that I wasn't photographing friends now but a stranger...someone whom I had never met.

The woman who had asked me to do this session recognized that my confidence was rattled. She reassured me that she thought I was more than capable to do this shoot, and that is why she had asked me. I tryed to tell her about some of my "real" photographer friends. She said, "I saw your work, you I asked, you I want." Fear of the unknown, fear of the "what ifs" Fear is what holds us back from growth. If I wanted to grow I needed to break out of my comfort zone and try something different to do something different, something I had not done before. This woman helped me through this fear.

I went to the session, arrived early with my equipment charged and cleaned. I took a deep breath, rang the doorbell, smiled and introduced myself as the client opened the door. The session went very well, the client and myself shared some laughs and the publication was pleased with the sessions pictures.

That was the official start to me becoming a small business owner in photography. I am extremely grateful for that experience, the woman who had faith in me when I was unsure of myself and for the fear I faced. Fear and My First Shoot. What is fear holding you back from today? Who's going to win....you? or Fear?

"Each time we face our fear, we gain strength, courage, and confidence in the doing."


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