by Skip Cohen
Over the last few weeks, I've repeatedly thought about writing today's post. I've avoided the topic because I honestly didn't want to contribute to what we're all dealing with already. Sheila and I fast forward past the news that adds nothing to our lives. It used to be anything political; now it's the stories about the virus. We've got World News down to a 7-minute watch!
The truth is, the world has gone mad. I'm not suggesting that Covid-19 isn't serious. Still, as I watched dozens of people at Costco loading their cars with cases of water, toilet paper, and paper towels I couldn't help but wonder what's going through their minds as they attack their fears with the same concern as a class 5 hurricane!
While I'd love to share my frustration with the media, politicians, and those at the forefront of the pandemic - my concern in this post is focused strictly on the business of photography.
Yesterday I got a call from my good buddy Jared Burns. He's in Seattle, essentially at "Ground Zero" for the US and the virus. The business has dried up - weddings and events are gone, and even family portraiture is a challenge. Fear has taken over the country and Jared's in the front row.
Well, he had a brilliant idea - getting a group of photographers together for a panel discussion of what to do through the pain of this horrible down-time. The seasonality of the business of photography has moved, and it's global - there isn't a place on the planet that isn't feeling the pain.
I've known Jared going back to one of my early "Skip's Summer School" programs, and I've watched him grow as an artist and a business-owner - right into going full-time into photography. And besides having respect for his skills as a photographer, manager, Dad, and husband - his approach is always the same: he's always searching for better solutions.
So, think about what we do know at the moment about the business:
I don't have a lot of answers, although there are some obvious things every photographer could be doing now:
Jared and a bunch of us are going to meet online on Wednesday night at 7:00 pm EST to talk about the challenges in photography. I can't catch Jared right now because of the time difference, but I'll share the link for anyone who wants to join us right here later this today. If you've got an interest, just type, "Count me in" in the comment section below so we know who's got an interest in joining us.
Just to wrap up this post, Sheila, has this quote framed and on a wall of our home where I see it every day. I can't think of a better thought to close with. You've got to have faith in things changing for the better...
is being sure of what you hope for
and certain of what you do not see.*
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.