Last night Sheila and I caught up to good buddy, Roberto Valenzuela. He's in Sarasota to shoot a wedding today and in spite of trying to get together both here and in Ohio over the years, his schedule has always been nuts and it's never worked. When he told us he was going to be here, our response was simply, "We'll take whatever time we can get."
We got out to dinner together last night and as with every time we've ever been together, we simply had a blast. We covered just about every topic from religion to the industry to publishing and back. Way too many laughs at our favorite restaurant in town, Indigenous. He had a buddy from Chicago, Collin Pierson, assisting him who we got to meet as well. Collin fit right in and added his own touch of humor to the evening.
Here's my point...this is an amazing industry, but as I've said a few hundred times in the past, the best thing has nothing to do with photography, but the friendships that come out of everyone's love for the craft. It's the relationships you have with other members of the photographic community that make it fun and the special business it is.
Your clients are important...constantly raising the bar on your skill set is important...pushing your creativity to the max is important...but nothing trumps the importance of investing time in your friendships.
So, to my good buddy, Roberto, who posted his own shot like the one above on Instagram...great to see you...good luck today on the wedding and come back when you've got some time to just relax. To the "new kid", Collin, welcome to the family, you've got an open invitation down here any time.
And to all of you, my readers...thank you for your support and feedback and in so many ways, friendship. Have a terrific weekend and as always, hug somebody special or for that matter not so special - they probably need it more.