Thursday, November 12, 2009

Passion, Perseverance And Visualization

  Photograph of my own feet in a boat on Inle Lake, Myanmar.  Ahh the life! This is a concept image about success, financial planning and the way forward.  ©johnlund

Delivery Boy, Substitute Teacher And Photography Blogs
Three things you need to have to succeed in photography: passion, perseverance and visualization.  I say that because success in photography, at least for me, has taken a long time. It took me six years before I could quit my secondary jobs (gas station attendant, delivery boy, substitute teacher and landscape laborer) and rely on photography to support me. It took seven years from the time I started seriously shooting stock until I could give up assignment work. And have been working at SEO (and photo blogging) for a year now and am just starting to see real results.  To succeed in photography you have to have perseverance. To keep doing the things you need to do while waiting for that success you need passion.

Strengthen Your Passion And Perseverance

One of my inspirations is Brian Tracy, a motivational speaker and coach. Brian reports that the vast majority of people quit just before success is finally about to arrive. To even set out to become a professional photographer you have to have some passion.  But what can you do to strengthen that passion, to increase that essential perseverance, and to help motivate yourself to actually do all those little things that need to be done to insure success? One way is to practice visualization.

Trips To Exotic Places And A Million Dollars A Year
Picture what you want your life to be like five years from now. Make that picture as clear and detailed as possible. For instance, five years from now I want to be living in my completed (I am living in a fixer-upper) home in Mill Valley. I want to be taking at least two trips to exotic places around the world each year. I want to have stock photo revenue of at least one million dollars each year. I will have a strong community of friends and fellow shooters. I will be in excellent shape (hmmm, I will be sixty-three years old). I will be able to do fifteen pull-ups, fifty consecutive perfect push-ups, and weigh 178 pounds (I can do now do nine pull-ups, forty consecutive push-ups and I weigh 182 pounds). Five years from now I will be selling at least one hundred or more fine-art prints a year (currently at about 12 a year), I will have one thousand more Rights Managed images online and will have a million visitors a year to my web site.  You get the picture, lots of fun detail!

Visualize Your Goals With Detail

By visualizing your goals with detail you make them more real, you give them more passion.  The more real your goals are the more compelling they become. Also, with detailed visualization, you can plan the steps, the individual goals, that are necessary to make that dream a reality. For example, to get one thousand more Rights Managed images online I will have to create two hundred such images a year. Slightly over sixteen images a month, or four images a week. Now there is a concrete goal for me to work on. I know from my past history that it is an ambitious goal, but is reachable. There is something really magical about setting ambitious but reachable goals. It is also essential to set deadlines for those goals. You can always set new deadlines if you miss one, but if you don’t set the deadline to begin with then your goal isn’t really a goal, it is just fantasizing!

Your Ideal Life, Passion And Goals

This brings us back to where we started, to visualization. Visualizing your ideal life in detail enables you to set appropriate goals and makes that future life compelling enough to keep your passion high and give you the perseverance to take the necessary steps to reach each of your goals. Speaking of goals, I have made three Rights Managed images so far this week and I need to complete one more tomorrow to meet my goal!


Luis Santos said...

I have been reading your blog since a long time and your are a true inspiration, your speeches are very important to me once I learn a lot from them, just a newbie but with high ambitions! Wish you luck on your powerful work, every concept you create makes me think that I am way way from my goal(s)! But it my concept is more traveling (photographing)!

Cheers and have a nice day!

Todd said...

Whatever you're doing, keep it up - you're doing a great job. You stock photo journey no doubt took a lot of hard work and perseverance, and I am sure it's finally paying off for you. Best wishes, and I'm sure your royalties will continue to come in long after retirement :) Will any of us "truly" retire from stock, though? Maybe slow down, but how can we ever stop's just too much fun!

John Lund said...


Thanks! It is important to me to know that I am being helpful!


John Lund said...


Your right, I don't ever plan on retiring from stock...I have too much fun doing it!