Wednesday, August 25, 2010
RustyNut on failure. RustyNut on Success.
RustyNut. Shit. What the heck do I do now?
I am really good at spending a lot of time planning things. I usually put way too much time, energy and thought into making sure that everything is going to be perfect before I'm ready to pull the trigger and really give it a go. Sometimes that perfectionism is a little…paralyzing.
I had been taking photographs for my entire life and I knew that I had some good, interesting stuff. Then, Brian came along and the two of us worked at really fine tuning our work and creating a specific vision for it. So about a year ago, I opened up Rusty Nut Studio on Etsy. I say opened but really all that I did was type in my email address, upload a banner and let the shop sit there, eternally empty. I convinced myself that I wasn't really ready to open up a shop, that I needed a bigger inventory, that I wanted to know my audience, that I had to cull through all of my photos and choose only the extraordinary ones. I was in
"planning" procrastination and self doubt mode.
Photography is the way that I express myself. I'm good at words but there are just too many things that I cannot say so I take pictures instead. If you ever really want to know what is inside of me, my pictures are the closest you'll get to knowing. So I was scared to put them out into the world for fear of rejection. I knew that was what I was doing but still, I resisted.
Eventually I pulled up my big girl panties and said enough is enough. I spent weeks choosing photos, writing clever little descriptions and stories, creating labels and tags, uploading images, writing shipping policies, starting a facebook group, joining street teams, marketing, advertising, promoting, and finally getting my butt in gear. It felt so good that I wondered why the heck I had procrastinated for so long. We were getting hits and mentioned on blogs and lots of positive reviews. We were in tons of Treasuries and we even got our first online sale. I was proud of myself.
Then I realized that I had been remiss and I really needed to backup all of my photography so that I could better protect it
I took down most of the images in the Etsy Shop (a few still remain because I have print outs of them already prepared). I stopped marketing and I wallowed in my own stupidity for a while. Until finally I said screw it, picked up my camera and decided to start over. I might not be able to get my portfolio back but I had progressed so much over the years that I knew I would be able to shoot like never before. I was determined and even a little bit excited to start shooting with an intensity that may have been slightly lacking before. And then……my camera broke, my beautiful Nikon. Fixing it would cost nearly as much as a new one. I declared tha tI was finished and the the Universe was jumping in to save me from failure and that obviously I wasn't good enough to be a "real" photographer and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
That was a month ago. I haven't taken a single photograph since July 23rd and it feels like I am missing a limb. 2 serious Epic photography failures 3 days apart with no immediate solution.
But you know, I'm determined. I'm going to try to sell the remaining stock in the shop to start funding the purchase of another camera (quick, hurry, run over there now while some inventory remains!). And in the meantime, I'm reading and studying and planning my next photo shoots. And in the end, I know, without a doubt that I'll be back in the saddle again. I don't have a choice, photography is like breathing and I don't know who I am without it.