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Words to Live by for Photographers/Artists/Creative Individuals

Whether we like to admit it or not, we photographers are in a RAT RACE to become popular; to be noticed; to be on SUL; to be sponsored; to be famous; to be someone and inspire millions. And yes...I am just as caught up in the RAT RACE as any other photographer...some days are better than others.

But than life has a way of putting things in perspective. It started with my beautiful wife +Varina Patel convincing me to stop doing less workshops and do more photography - the thing we love the most. And then couple of days ago +Varina Patel and I listened to Neil Gaiman's speech to the Arts Class of 2012. If you have not done so, I would highly encourage you to do so...Here are some of the things that stood out to me.

**If you don't know it's impossible it's easier to do.
**I tended to do anything as long as it felt like an adventure, and to stop when it felt like work, which meant that life did not feel like work.
**The point where you stop saying yes to everything, because now the bottles you threw in the ocean are all coming back, and have to learn to say no.
**I hope you'll make mistakes. If you're making mistakes, it means you're out there doing something.
**The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can.
**“This is really great. You should enjoy it.” And I didn't. Best advice I got that I ignored.Instead I worried about it. I worried about the next deadline, the next idea, the next story...

Text of the speech can be found here:

Time to go home...and enjoy the photographs from our last trip.

Enjoy & Share.
I think this should be required viewing for every "creative" person here (and everywhere) Stick with this. So worth it.
Particularly the quote "I hope you'll make mistakes. Because if you make mistakes, it means you're out there doing something..."

"...Make glorious and fantastic mistakes"

And, it goes without saying but always needs to be reiterated, Remember to "enjoy it."
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Top notch advice Jay, thanks for sharing...definitely lots of impact here and its all true!
+Rick Diffley Completely agree...I have enjoyed cancelling workshops and focusing on photographing this year.
I agree 100% with all this....when it starts to be work ...stop doing it. For years i worked on my friends computers and did it most of the time for free on day i was asked why i dont start a repair shop and make a living at it.....I said then it would be a job and jobs are not fun and I have fun playing with computers.
Thx Jay, I would like to personally but I can't seem to find him. Hopefully he has heard how popular his speech has become.
+Jay Patel that's a great message for me today since I wrote about how I let a dumb mistake ruin my evening. But the advice is so right. At least I was out there doing something and turned out in the end the mistake wasn't as bad as I thought.
Someone once said "the problem with the rat race is even if you win you are still a rat". Better to opt out. :-)
+Jay Patel Thank you for posting this! For me, photography is just something I do for the pure enjoyment of it. I find myself looking through the photos I have taken and remembering the stories, however minor, of how I took the photo and what I was doing around that time. BUT, my wife +Rochelle Ireland is an independent musician who is trying to walk the fine line between being pulled into the race, and staying outside of it. She will really appreciate this post the most. Thank you for sharing!
I especially like the more-photos, less-workshops part. Although I'm sure the workshops are more lucrative, the world is a better place because of the art you produce. Just a thought.
I'm an amateur, but like taking pictures.+Jay Patel and +Varina Patel and some other professionals gave me here on Google+ some good ideas. With that I can go on with my work far away from the RAT RACE. For you, it could be, that you would find your vision without workshops, tipps on Google+ and on your blog. But you and your colleques have opened me a new world of taking pictures. For that, I'm thankfull, even if I had to spend some money to filters and so on ;-) .
+Benedikt Meier LOL!! We never said "Make More Art" is not expensive....but it will certainly make life more exciting. :)))
Great post +Jay Patel. Thanks for sharing. The speech is inspirational and a part of it helped confirm my decision this year to Cancel some things and switch directions in order to make more art.
Great quotes! My favorite is the one that starts "The one thing you have that nobody else has is you."
Thank you Jay! really thankful that I came by your post....searched "creative mind" and found your post. Thank you. 
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