2016 was a weird year.
I think I can speak for all of us when I say it was an unexpected year to say the least. 2016 just seemed to have a blanket of malaise through the full year. There were lots of ups and downs but wow a whole lot of downs. We kind of realized the world is a lot scarier than we gave it credit for. In the age of smart phones, tablets, plugging in, luxurious tech solutions shaming this and that social media memes viral marketing keeping up with the Jone distractions, we kind of got hit in the face with our own mortality, the mortality of others, and the fact that no matter how progressive we think we are as a society we make HUGE mistakes. (See what I did there?)
Freelancing in 2016 was interesting as well. We saw more freelancers join the market more than ever. It’s great that folks are once again taking it upon themselves to carve out their own niche. Isn’t that what modern society was built on? People saying NO- I got this? Creatively I had so far the best year of my career. I met so many wonderful people, worked on many great projects, and improved my portfolio in ways I couldn’t even dream of when I started in 2013. It makes me hungry to do more and hungry for the future. That being said – success doesn’t come over night. I’m personally not at all where I want to be now but instead of jumping the gun I’ve come to grips with walking before I run – even though I have a very run run run attitude. The cream always rises to the top (Oh yeah!) as they say. Freelancing has many bumps in the road but the goal should be knowing that you’re doing what you love and are able to support yourself and your family. Being in New York we have the added bonus of fighting with the city that never sleeps and wrestling it into submission because you know you can conquer whatever is out there waiting. But guess what – New York doesn’t want to beat you down. New York is the Howard “Fats” Brown (From the Twilight Zone Episode “A Game Of Pool.”) New York is the best there is BUT wants to be beaten. It needs you to alleviate the stigma that comes with it. The song rings true “If you can make it there – you can make it anywhere” and I think if you have the mindset to make it in NYC and follow through – you’ll be just fine kiddo. I encourage anyone with a passion to jump in two feet first and ruin their lives trying to make something of themselves in this city.
We lost a lot of great people in 2016 and I’d like to think we gained a lot of perspective. Life’s too short to be an asshole to anyone. Maybe we should be as good as we can to one another and hope that 2017 is the most kick ass year we can have regardless of how you feel about certain things. My mindset is to engage and rearrange. We could also use a serious overhaul on our way through life and what better time than now? I have the privilege of working with a lot of great creative folks and more often than not I get texts, emails, and have conversations regarding the same feelings across the board. Hopefully we have an artful 2017 with tons of laughs, great success, and a lot of fun. Don’t let the haters tear you down. Onward. Forward. March.
Headshots Can Help
We all have dreams. Some of us follow those dreams. Some of us don’t. That’s a fact. If you ever wanted to be an actor, model, or entertainer and decided to quit your day job to pursue your dream full time then more power to you. That one solitary spark of ambition already sets you apart from the pack. There are tons of great resources out there for a young actor,model or musician to get their foot in the door and many great websites, podcasts, blogs to steer you in the right direction. However, the one thing anyone breaking into the entertainment industry needs is a good headshot.
Headshots can help. Why? Well, there are a thousand reasons. They show casting agents that you are serious about putting your face out there. They are a great way to get attention to your social profiles (which ever one you use), and they are a tool to get you where you need to go. Don’t think of headshots as a luxury. Think of them as a vital part of your process to fulfilling your dream. They are also a great add on to your website, which you should have regardless of what field you’re in. If you have founded a niche company and want folks to get to know you a bit with a personal touch then add a photo to your “about” page. Investing in professional photography for your personal headshot goes a long way in this day and age. We live in the future and everything is a click or swipe away. You need that image to have an impact that people will remember.
Once you have a photo or set of photos; those images will be your go to for a surprising number of connections. If you subscribe to a site like helpareporter.com many times the writers looking to interview you for a specific topic will require a headshot. That means don’t send them the photo of you from Halloween that you think looks sexy. It means send them a professional looking photo that lets everyone know that you mean business. What do headshots mean for business? It means clients can attach a face to brand. What do headshots mean for an aspiring actor or model? It means they now have a way to communicate their money maker to potentially interested parties.
If you’re starting your entertainment career, leaving an old job to start your business, or even if you just want some photos to reflect yourself to others then I suggest getting some professional headshots done. It’s part of the experience of going out on your own and saying “Here I am.”
This post may almost be two weeks late but that’s OK. That’s what the internet is for. 2014 was so far the best year I have had professionally. I’ve met tons of great people, worked with some amazing folks, had some fantastic opportunities, and became a better shooter. I also adopted a very die hard can do attitude and a more positive lifestyle (which my wife calls “fucking postile” (Thanks Pantera!) – Aggressive positivity.) And yes I just used parenthesis within parenthesis (I’m the writer here and I make the rules!) I’ve also come to realize that as human beings we are nothing without each other and need to spread love and kindness whenever we can. Here are some things I learned in 2014 that I want to share with you guys that might help!
1) Positive thoughts lead to positive things.
It’s true. If you are constantly negative and cynical your life will reflect that. If you know your worth, know who you are, know why people like you, know what you’re good at then that’s what counts and concentrate on the good things in your mind, which will eventually lead to better things in your life.
2) Abandon negative people.
I cut ties with a few negative folks in my life and am all the more happier. It helps. Why be stagnant when we should be moving forward?
3) The harder you work at something the more you get out of it.
That’s a simple truth.
4) Care about your health because you only have one body.
I lost 50 pounds in 2014 due to a diabetes scare. It opened my eyes to a few very important things. We should all pay attention to our habits and stick to a goal. We should lose weight and exercise because we love our bodies not because we hate them.
5) Be yourself no matter what.
I will admit to a sort of crisis of personality during a lot of 2014 between who I was, am, and want to be. I got lost in a bit of a formula and woke up one morning to abandon that mentality in order to inject myself more into everything I do.
6) It doesn’t hurt to be open, loving, and kind. Cherish the people in your life that matter.
I wear my heart on my sleeve and tell people who matter that I love them whenever I feel like. Spread that around.
A badeep badeep badeep I guess that’s all folks. Those are my two cents and even if one person reading this got something from it – I would be a very happy camper.
Live Long and Prosper.