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I'm a Cairns, far north Queensland, Australia professional photographer specialising in travel, editorial and environmental portraiture.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Follow your dreams before it's too late.

Today's post is inspired by Sharon Cohrs. I've never met Sharon, only read about her in the paper. She's a local Cairns woman, a breast cancer survivor, and has just climbed Mt Everest. You can read about here in the Cairns Post article on her amazing feat. That makes a couple of Cairns locals who've knocked the big one off now. A couple of years back one-armed Paul Hockey made it all the way up and came back down safely to tell the tale.

The closest I got was a valley over. This image was taken from the top of Gokyo Peak - a mere molehill at about five and a half thousand metres above sea level. Still it took my wife and I three weeks to walk there from just outside Kathmandu and has to be one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

I spoke about my father-in-law yesterday. One of his life's big dreams is to get to Everest one day. Just to see it with his own eyes. My Mum's is to see the Taj Mahal. Neither of them have got there yet. I've been to both and count my blessings every day. If you have dreams - follow them. Don't let them go until it's too late. Do what you have to do to put them in place. If it's all too big and scary do it one step at a time. Just make sure you do it because before you know it there'll be, in the words of John Cougar Mellencamp "less days in front of the horse than riding the back of this cart' and you'll never do it.

If you'd like to see how following my crazy dreams got me to the Himalayas in Nepal then check out the link.


vita.morphosis said...

Thanks for this post. Another post the other day was talking about how hard it was to be a photographer, which is my dream. Being self employed means things like no insurance and no 401k etc etc. It was also talking about how passion was something intangible and did not qualify much as a reason to leave a job and find fulfillment. Your post gives the boost to the voice I hear in my self that says, Go for it. One is all the life we have, and to never take the chance to go after a dream would be a tragedy. Thank you for putting these thoughts together.

Paul Dymond said...

Thanks Aloha. I think it's really important to follow your dreams. Here in Australia we don't have to worry about 401k because everybody gets free medical care but there are certainly a lot of expenses running a photo business.
My advice would be to follow your dreams while making a full-time income. Charge as you would if you were a full-time photographer - that way you'll know if you can find clientele who can pay your prices after you switch to photography full-time.No point charging less if you're doing it only part-time only to chuck your job in and find your clients won't pay the actual money you need to survive with photography alone. Best to charge full prices from the start
If you find that your photography takes off to the point that you're making close to what you do in your salaried job then make a decision which way to go.
It's easy to tell the boss to jump in the lake and then find that photography won't support you. My advice would be to set yourself up financially so that money concerns don't take you away from following your dreams.
When you're not so desperate that you'll take any job that pays you can concentrate more on crafting a career that suits you spiritually and financially.
Good luck with it!