Being in a photography business involves interaction with lots of different people. But putting yourself and your work out there seems more difficult if you’re introverted. In this video, photographers Sean Tucker and Simon Baxter discuss this topic, and their thoughts will inspire all you introverts out there.
Unlike many other videos or blogs, Sean and Simon don’t suggest that you overcome your emotions, habits and needs and pretend to be someone you’re not. Instead, they talk about being successful while staying true to your introvert nature – and that’s what I particularly like about this video.
Personally, I used to think of myself as an extrovert when I was younger. But the older I get, the more I lean towards being an introvert. Of course, I enjoy being around the people I love, but when I need to re-energize, most of the times I can do it only if I’m alone. In the first part of the video, Sean reflects on this, explaining that the introverts get their energy from being alone. This is why, if you’re introverted, you need to find time for yourself.
When you feel drained after a shoot, or you need to prepare for one, you should take at least half an hour to be alone. Sean usually takes a walk in a forest with headphones in his ears, listening to some non-distracting music. I tend to do the same when I need to recharge. And if you can take a day or two to be alone, think and do what you like – even better.
Just like Sean, Simon also emphasizes the walks around the woods as peaceful, relaxing and even therapeutic. He enjoys wandering around a forest with his camera, only he sometimes brings his dog, too. But whatever it is you like doing – as an introvert, don’t constrain yourself from enjoying your solitude.
Building a career as an introvert photographer
Okay, the solitude is your way to “recharge” and we’ve got this covered. But how do you build a career as an introverted photographer? If you’re already on this path, you know it’s not easy.
Sean begins this part of the video by suggesting some genres you may find suitable. As an introvert, you may not feel too comfortable with photographing people. So, if you’re still trying to find your niche, perhaps you should focus on architecture, food or landscape photography.
Still, being an introvert doesn’t need to prevent you from being a portrait or fashion photographer, or any kind of photographer involving people as subjects. You just need to be aware of the fact that interaction with people could take away a bit more energy from you than it would from an extrovert. So, be ready to spend some time alone and re-energize.
Be who you are
I particularly like the focus on being who you are. You may feel that extrovert people with bubbly personality get more opportunities. They find it easier to approach clients and they can be really charming. Still, this doesn’t mean you need to force yourself to be like this or give up on building a career as a photographer. What you need is be true to yourself, and offer what you have to offer, not what you think you should.
Introvert people are usually good listeners, so use this to your advantage. Listen to your subject, their ideas and problems they might have during the shoot, and work with them on solving the problems. Use your traits like thoughtfulness, preparation and problem-solving to get the best shots and make your client happy. And trust me, it’s wonderful how the calm “aura” introverts usually have makes people relax and trust you, even though you might feel it’s not the case. So be who you are, do your best in your work, and both your personality and your skill will be appreciated and respected.
[Making it as an Introvert (feat. Simon Baxter) | Sean Tucker]