David duChemin is one of my favorite photographers. Not for his images (even though they are uniformly great) but more for what he says. He writes books for his company, Craft & Vision, and every one of them that I’ve read has reminded me to recenter my focus away from gear and equipment acquisition and back to centering myself around intentions for my image and trying to actually say something with my work. I’m currently reading his latest book “Photographically Speaking”, which is tremendously great.
David put up a post the other day that related less to images and image making and more to the marketing side of photography. In his post he talked about how if you’re going to be a working photographer, you have to identify a need that people have and then help them fill that need:
“If you want to make it as an entrepreneur whose commerce revolves around your photography, that photography has to meet a need. It has to scratch an itch.” – David duChemin
It seems like a no-brainer. Super obvious, right? And yet, I find myself forgetting this all the time. I get so focused on making better and better images, I just assume that of course people will then want me to make amazing images of them. I forget to ask myself what my customer wants. Who is my customer? Where are they, and what are they trying to do? I can scratch a wide variety of itches, if I can just figure out what needs to be scratched. It’s something for me to think about…. a lot.
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