The not-so-secret brand strategy photographers don’t do

There were two photographers. Both from the same school, starting business the same year, shooting the same thing the same way: weddings in New York City.

But one had twice the bookings and twice the pay.

Why?

It sounds like one of those riddles that leaves you banging your head against the wall, because you can’t figure it out. Except it’s real life.

What makes the difference?

What a spectacularly overpriced burger tells us about value

This hamburger costs $175:

burger

When I first heard about it, I couldn’t contain myself. “What? Who the hell pays $175 for a burger?!?!” The couple sitting at the table next to me looked over like I was a mumbling nut job.

Then I realized … Read more...

Don’t steal unless you’re willing to do this

Talent is useless.

It’s a label we slap on something beyond words that suffocates that very something. As Duke Ellington often said, it’s beyond category.

Every so often, I get an email like this:

OK, I get it. I get that voice matters and all that, but how am I supposed to develop it without copying?

You don’t.

You just rip people off until you’re so you, no one sees it as ripping people off.

Isn’t that what learning is, after all?

stealwell2

And, yet, instead of ripping people off until we become different, we’re taught to rip people off until we become alike. We steal for the comfort of sameness, instead of the empowerment of difference.

That’s ass backwards.

In … Read more...

Why is it so hard to live a personal life?

It’s that time of the year.

Again.

Back-to-back shoots. Projects left and right. Trying to get to it, barely getting through it. Gotta do more, be more, learn more, see more. How do you survive?

And why is it so hard to live a personal life, when there isn’t really any other life to have?

presentfuture

Of course, we all have the answer. We’ve all tasted it, held it, been there, and lived it. Somewhere, at some point, we had it, and most of us let go.

But if the task is hard, the answer is simple.

Have courage.

Find joy.

Open your heart, share your mind, and go get shit done.

No matter who you are and what you do, the … Read more...