As part of the Southwestern Photojournalism Conference in Texas this past weekend, the speaking faculty had the honor and privileged to mentor some young student shooters. For part of the day, I shadowed Megan Bailey from Union University in Tennessee, offering bits of guidance, as she shot photos in the Fort Worth Stockyards. Her chosen subject was The Stockyards Up Close. This profile portrait of one of the cowboys won her the Judges Award. I would also like to bring up a point that all photographers need to consider.
As creatives, we tend to fall into the trap of comparing our work to others. Here is a hint for long-term survival in this field: Do not compare yourselves to others. Comparing yourself to others is a sure route to depression and paralysis. If you fall into the comparison trap, you will become so fearful that it will block your imagination. You will freeze up and produce nothing of value. You will be paralyzed and unable to flow in any kind of creativity. Sounds pretty harsh, but I have been there. I know from whence I speak!
The only reason I bring this up now is that once I saw her portrait on the computer monitor, I was tempted to be jealous. I was tempted to compare her shot to my work. Great work, Megan, and congrats on the award. I think I will just enjoy your photo and not compare anything!