Building Relationships, Not Burning Bridges
How helping newer photographers means we all win!
This post is going to be a little outside my usual stuff, but I feel like it needs to be addressed. With that, I hope this finds someone that is looking for help and they reach out because I am all about building people up and educating those that want to learn.
I've been a part of some pretty toxic communities in my day, between online gaming and paintball I've seen some pretty nasty and hurtful comments from people directed at people they've never even met. While I'll never understand how people can act in such a manner, it just seems like it's "part of the deal". I thought I had seen it all to be honest, but that wasn't until I started being more active in some photography groups I had THOUGHT were meant to help fellow photographers. What most of the posts I see really are is photogs complaining about clients using an Instagram filter on their photos (that they paid for) or trashing newer photographers in their area for doing something similar to them. They're so quick to tear someone down who's just starting out and trying to find their way without trying to understand why they did what they did.
Allow me to clarify before I delve too far into this, blatantly ripping off someone's work is absolutely wrong and you should never do it (especially since it opens you up to be sued for intellectual property theft, but that's a whole other discussion for a later date). Having said that, I have personally yet to find a newer photographer that did it with the intent to do harm to the photographer's work they stole. Typically it's more of a "I want to try this" or something along those lines and most of them aren't even aware of the infraction they've performed in doing so. I always take the time to let them know that doing things like that is typically frowned up and can be seen as image theft, especially if it is being passed off as their own work in the process.
I didn't get to where I'm at by accident or dumb luck, it took a lot of hard work and more importantly people who knew more than I did taking the time to help me learn and grow within my craft. While I'm far from an expert photographer, my door is always open to anyone that asks for help. If you have a desire to learn about photography, or even just grow your craft yourself, please know I will always get back to you when I am able to. Don't be afraid, don't be intimidated and don't limit yourself.
Currently Listening To: The Numbers by Rise Against