The COVID-19 virus has been hard on our photography community. Many sessions and events are slowing or being canceled due to the continuing spread of the virus, with that comes job loss and frustration of when your next job will be. We don't know how long this will continue, and we know it's a lot to deal with. A whole lot. Too much in fact.
Relax. It's okay.
Many of us have been there, I, myself during the 2008 crisis. Job loss is scary, and since the virus is a threat to everyone's health, it's harder to figure out what happens next.
So what can happen next? What do you focus on if you can't perform your normal daily tasks? It might be time to reevaluate and prioritize. Since it may be a while before your next shoot, this is the time to focus on parts of your business and life that you might have been ignoring.
So yes, while you might be binging your favorite new Netflix shows or playing that new video game to unwind, you have the opportunity to explore new creative avenues you were too busy to do before. Here are some ways to keep your creativity flowing while you're stuck indoors.
Sometimes we buy that new camera and break it in just in time for a shoot, (Guilty. I'm looking at you Black Magic Cinema Camera), but never understand all the features it may have because we're in a rush for it to perform our jobs. Or you know LightRoom but want to understand PhotoShop, or you know PhotoShop and want to learn LightRoom. Pull out those manuals, search user groups on forums and Facebook and check out youtube videos related to your awesome piece of gear or software. LinkedIn Learning (formerly Lynda.com) has a free 30-day trial. There are entire communities that are diehard fans of anything and everyone on the internet, especially tech and camera related. Learning your tools only makes you a better master of them. Use this time to really figure out your settings and options and even connect with others online.
In this time, you can do a lot of test shooting with family, pets, or just getting out of your comfort zones. Use this time to show a different style of portraiture or show off your talents in unique ways. Make a new type of series featuring figurines or even your children's toys. You have the ability to make art with anything anywhere; don't let being in your home be a barrier to creativity. Break out that Greenscreen and do some creative photoshop. Let your imagination run wild.
Most Facebook groups have been asking the same question, "what are you going to do in your downtime?". A lot of the answers have been "work on my website". Yes, this is the best time to focus on your website. Your website acts as your business front, and people are still able to visit you right now. While you may not be able to currently shoot with your clients, you can always get clients to request and confirm for future events. You now have time to update outdated content, refresh your brand, relaunch with a 2021 ready website, and work on all those blogs you keep saying you're going write.
PhotoBiz has made some huge updates to our platform this last quarter. We've added tons of new templates, bulk downloads, and a new scheduling tool. If you haven't moved from the Legacy or Portfolio builders, PhotoBiz 8 will make you look more professional than ever, while saving you money. It is not only easier to use, but it's also more secure with SSL available for your site.
Still not up to it? Our Pro Services can assist you with a website jumpstart, logo design, and tons of other services if you require them. Making your brand ready for the rest of the year is one thing you can easily do from home. Our team is prepared to assist you at all times.
Ok, so maybe you're in a creative block or just don't have the resources for your self to do what you want from home. Or perhaps you need a staycation from your job. You can use this time to do something entirely new. Write a book, create a podcast, start making music, or knit a scarf! There are tons of different ways to be creative, and stretching those muscles are great. You get to explore parts that you might not have had confidence in before or were too busy to entertain as an option. You might be a great painter or a fantastic storyteller but don't know because you've never tried. Now is the time to see how far your creativeness can go.
It's time to cut out all of the distractions of what is happening in the world; it's one thing to stay informed, but finding balance and peace within your life is also necessary to keep you focused on your own needs. Anxiety can keep you from pursuing creative endeavors, but you have to break through it. Yoga and working out within your home is a great way to keep your balance both mentally and psychically.
All those times you swore you'd work on yourself, it might be the time actually to do it. There are many great apps and youtube content out there to help you with your relaxation and exercise. Maybe disconnect from social media for a week or at least a few days. A healthier self can lead to better decision making and creativity.
The most important thing you can do while staying at home is practice safety and staying clam. If you have children, this is the time to be with them and help them understand what's going on. It's also an opportunity to collaborate with them. My daughter is very curious about photography, and now I have a chance to show her how to use a camera and let her do experiments. It allows us to bond over something we both like and spend more time together.
Take this time to care about your self and think beyond your skill sets. Take time to prepare your website, try something new, and relax. But most importantly, be safe!
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