Uncompromising.

Uncompromising is a word I respect.  It means you create your own style and your own vision and you stick to it.  It means you deliver what you say you will.  No fluff, no drama, no changing it after the fact.  One of the photographers I respect most was like this, his name was Helmut Newton.

Part of him getting to where he was in the industry was based on how he ran his own photo shoots.  If he delivered an image it was a success simply because he was the one who shot it.  We really don’t have anyone like this today, there are a few who are pretty close but they still compromise their work to land the job.  Once again, money wins out.

In this world of excess and this shallow industry it really is about who you know.  It is no longer about who can deliver the best image or even who can deliver an image that can actually sell something.  If you know the right people or just happen to be married to an executive who calls the shots, you will get the job.  Even though your qualifications are crap and you have no clue how to use the equipment at your disposal, you will get the job.

What does this tell people?  It means there really is a casting couch for everything.  You can sleep your way to the top or just mingle at the right party or social event and hang out in the “right” bars, success will apparently come to you.  But what happens when you get it?  Can you actually keep delivering a quality product to keep working?  Or are you going to just rely on the few people who are your friends to keep you busy?

I’m all for making connections, but learn your craft too.  Otherwise you are wasting your 15 minutes of fame.  Learn to make those 15 minutes last.  Do not compromise yourself.