by Skip Cohen
I suppose today's post sounds like it would be better suited for Throwback Thursday. Still, it's a mini-testimonial to great memories, friendships, and the value of your skillset as photographers.
Three years ago, I had to let go of Molly the Wonder Dog. I consider it one of the very worst days of my life, and the only reason it comes to mind this time of year is that it was the day after Valentine's Day. But my point isn't about how much our pets mean to us and the pain of losing them. Instead, it's about the value of those intangible memories turned tangible with photographs.
The two photographs above, which I've shared before, were captured by my good buddy "Vanelli." We were doing a guys' weekend while Sheila was away, and he caught my two most favorite portraits of Molly and me. For weeks after losing her, I'd look at them every day, talk to them like a lunatic and try and imagine life without her.
There's so much so many of you take for granted. You're magicians, capable of taking memories and giving people the ability to hold and relive those moments forever. You forget how important a role imaging plays in everyone's life. Where would the world be without photography?
And while I have hundreds of old photographs of Molly, the hole in my heart has been filled by Lucy and Belle. Of course, Molly will always own real estate in my heart, but her spirit lives on in two more members of the family. And just like Molly, they know when there's a camera around, especially Belle.
Here's my point:
For most of you, it's the slowest time of year in terms of your business. It's the perfect time to think about the true value of your ability to capture memories. Build out your marketing plan for the new year around that skill set. As photographers, every client trusts you to capture those moments they miss with their eyes but catch with their hearts. That carries a huge responsibility to never compromise on the quality of an image, and never say, "That's good enough."
Now take that one step beyond your clients and think about your own family. How often do you miss memories shooting "neurochromes," because you don't feel like picking up your camera? Never miss a memory-making moment for your own family album.
And to my buddy, Vanelli, there's no way to put a value on the gift you gave me 3 1/2 years ago. We all use the word "priceless" to describe those special moments in our lives. Thanks pal!
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.