Recently (on my newsfeed, at least) I've been seeing the hashtag "communityNOTcompetition" and it has really struck a chord with me. I love it!
In the past, I've seen job postings for photography assistants that state the applicant may have "no side/personal projects of their own" and it's extremely disheartening.
"Oh, you're a lover of photography and you'd like to help me out? Yeah, you can't have any joy in your own creativity. Just mine."At least that's the message posts like that relay to me.
We are a group of individuals who've fallen in love with the same general art form, we SHOULD be embracing one another and lifting each other up not stifling the hopes and dreams of those looking to grow.
That's why I love this new hashtag SO MUCH! And let me tell you, the dream of it has really been yanking me out of my shell!
Being a naturally introverted human being, I find it downright frightening to meet new people! If I were to stay inside my comfort zone, I'd never get anything done. But, this past month I have contacted 5+ (almost) complete strangers about both photography and modeling and each one has lead to a new and exciting opportunity! (SAY WHAAAAAT!?)
Invitations to meet, adventure, work with, and befriend like-minded creatives is a dream come true. And thus far, the results have been AMAZING.
So, in conclusion, I wholeheartedly encourage you to do the same! It doesn't necessarily have to be photography related but, go outside your box, talk to someone you wouldn't normally, and expand your community! You won't be sorry!