As I’ve alluded to in a few previous posts, some BIG CHANGES were afoot. I am pleased that I can (finally!) announce that my husband, my cats, and I are moving to Asheville, North Carolina! Although this move has been in the works for several months, it has always felt like it was perpetually two months away. Now, all of a sudden, the move is staring me in the face. My husband is moving in a week and I’m heading out in two. My mind has been absolutely consumed with details: hiring a mover, updating our address, visiting as many friends as possible before hitting the road. We have both turned in our notices at work, and my husband already has a job waiting on him in Asheville.
But the best part? Thanks to a lot of saving, and the endless generosity and support of my husband, I am going to be a full-time photographer! (I feel so pretentious saying that, but whatever.) I’ve rented a little studio in the River Arts District of Asheville, and I’m going to work for myself. This has been a dream of mine for years, and it’s still something I can hardly believe is actually going to come true. I hope to build up a nice little business with good clients and have the opportunity to explore more with my fine art: not only my macro images (which I have some big plans for), but also to experiment with drawing and painting and maybe even combining those mediums with my macro photography. I also want to really buckle down and study graphic design and build up a nice portfolio, in case this whole photography thing does not work out. I am at a point in my life in which I crave change and I really want to follow a different path, just to see where it leads.
I will be back soon with pictures of my new studio, as well as information on where you can find me in Asheville. In the meantime, it’s back to endless packing, endless phone calls, and tying up a few loose ends. Please wish us luck!
I used to sit at my desk in college and dream. I would dream about the future and the exciting job I would some day have. I don’t think I ever imagined that my career would involve a series of bland cubicles, wasted time, and frustrating coworkers. Does anyone dream of spending their most vibrant years trapped in a gray cubicle for forty hours a week, doing mind-numbing work that in the end, doesn’t seem to matter all that much anyway?
I remember being in elementary school and attending a local church daycare a few days a week in summer. Sometimes I would walk to the bathroom on my own and I would pause in the walkway, staring outside at the cars traveling on the road ahead. I would wish with all of my might that I was inside one of those cars, free and easy, driving under the gleaming summer sun, instead of stuck inside, under the thumb of some authority I neither respected or cared for. I never thought I would do the same thing as an adult.
I used to be so certain that I was going to make something of myself. I was going to be a famous poet and writer, maybe even an artist, and no one was going to stop me. But I guess life steps in and at some point you realize that the chances of your being able to do what you love for a living and actually getting paid for it are fairly slim. So you dial down your dreams a notch or two, thinking that someday soon, once SOMETHING happens in life, you’ll get back to them. And then a few years pass, and you turn the dial down just a little bit lower, and then lower yet again, until you’re left with nothing but dryness and an ache in the empty pit of your stomach.
I was sitting in a meeting the other day, and people were discussing the minutia of this or that, and as they were speaking, I looked around the room. Who among us had dreamed as a child that we would some day be little office drones wearing nice little office suits and talking about dull little office concepts? No child ever says they want to be a businessman or woman when they grow up, do they? We always want to be something fantastical: an astronaut, a ballerina, a doctor, a singer. Sometimes we’re kept from our dreams by inescapable physical realities: the would-be ballerina who has a leg deformity, the would-be singer who is tone deaf. But most of the time, I think we stop ourselves because it’s too hard or too scary to step outside of our comfort zone and be the person we want to be, or even the person we know we can be. We hide our authenticity behind a facade of happiness, because after all, why shouldn’t we be happy? We have a nice job in an air-conditioned building, decent hours, a good salary, and nice benefits like health insurance and a retirement package, and all the while our souls die just a little bit more every day.
But I am tired now of waiting for the future. I am tired of putting what I want to do on the back burner. I want to live for myself now. I don’t want to live for anyone else. I don’t want to answer to anyone else. I want to do something that makes me feel important, needed, and fulfilled.
I want to die failing spectacularly at something I love, instead of living successfully doing something I hate. And I am taking steps to make that happen. Much more to come.
I have lots of dreams, hopes, and wishes for this little photography venture I’ve started. LOTS. Everything is still in an embryonic, thinking stage, but it’s exciting to dream about.
I would be remiss if I didn’t share a couple more of my new macro flower prints, because they are just THAT lovely! All new images (as well a some new ones I’ve yet to share here) are available in both my Etsy shop and my ArtFire as well! Enjoy!
After spending months and months thinking about it, I finally decided to bite the bullet and buy the .com domain for Facing the Lens today. It feels good to have ownership of it at last (I purchased it from BlueHost), and I’m quite excited at the prospect of having a fully-customizable web site where I can do whatever I’d like and break any rule I choose to break. Muwahaha.
I decided a while back that I wanted to use the WordPress content management software and install it and run it from my own domain name. From what I understand, you can do ANYTHING with the WordPress.org software, and I’m looking forward to figuring it out and exploring this new world. I used to do a bit of HTML coding at a job in the past (and know a little bit of .ASP and Java), so I’m hoping that this small bit of knowledge will help me have a smaller learning curve. Additionally, one of the reasons I went for BlueHost was the fact that they have one-click support for WordPress installation and anything to make this migration easier for me is a plus. I’m going to have this blog link up to my domain name once I get everything sorted out, so you can still come to this address in the future if you wish.
Another plus is that when I get new business cards made, I can put my own URL on the card, instead of taking people to Etsy or to ArtFire or anywhere else. I will be able to truly define my own identity and establish my own presence on the web.
I’m very excited!
I actually have a photographic goal for the week! Huzzah! It’s certainly taken me long enough, no? And really, when I admit it, I don’t have a PHOTOGRAPHY goal this week so much as I do a PHOTOGRAPHY SELLING goal. No, I don’t want to sell X number of photos by X day. Instead, my goal for the week is to get all of my photographs finally listed on ArtFire. Etsy has been pissing me off a LOT lately, and you can read about some of their most recent inane screw-ups in the following threads:
- Listing Fees and Pagination – Even Less Value for Money Now? – Oh, so if I don’t renew constantly I won’t even show in customer searches? NICE.
- New Profile Pages – Thanks for giving people another outlet OUT of my shop, Etsy!
- The New Social Etsy?
- Reasons Why the Front Page DOES Matter To Your Business – Etsy promotes the same sellers on the front page, day in and day out. There are even treasury teams dedicated to promoting each other constantly to get to the front page. No one else has a chance!
- More front page woe threads that were closed.
- Unbelievably dumb coral article.
- No GOOGLE SYNDICATION!! Why is it that Etsy can’t get me into Google Shopping AT ALL, but ArtFire can do it for every one of my items within MINUTES???
It feels more and more like it’s time to jump the Etsy ship. The only way to be seen on there is to renew your items constantly, and those twenty cents add UP! Instead of fixing their horrific search engine, they urge you to renew, renew, renew. Bah! I’m done playing THAT little game! I don’t think I will ever leave Etsy entirely, as it’s somewhat of a known name at this point and it has SO much potential if only the folks in charge would get their act together, but I am less than thrilled with it right now. Way less than thrilled.