What I Learned This Year: Jeremy Charles

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Being one of those 'learn by doing' types, I try out ideas and tactics and see what works best. After a crazy year, here are some things I've road tested that I'm SURE about. 

Just Be Good at What You Do
Whatever you do, just do the very best job you can and continually find ways to get better. Drop all the extraneous BS and distractions. People will take notice.

You Will Never Be The Best
So accept it. There a thousand people out there who are better than you in every way. Even thinking this makes me cringe because I'm so deeply competitive. But I've had to learn to accept it - and this gives me the fuel to strive to be better. 

Find Balance and Maintain It
Being a photographer means you have an erratic schedule. 'TGIF' has become a hollow acronym. Throw a family into the mix and you're in the danger zone. I made a decision to set aside time that no client can invade. It also helps to have an awesome understanding wife.

Sleep Is Very Important
Maybe I'm just getting old, but 'Tired Me' and 'Well-Rested Me' are two different people. I like Well-Rested Me a lot more.

Take Responsibility for Your Own Ideas
We're all struck with brilliant ideas, but 99% of the time we let them die on the vine. Nobody's going to discover you. No one's going to wait while you dither. If you have a good idea - make that sucker come to life with your own willpower. You can bend a spoon with your mind, man.

Don't Go Halfway
I'm definitely mangling some wise adage here, but 'The road to greatness is riddled with the corpses of the half done.' If there is one thing I am adamant about, it is - I always finish what I start. This message brought to you by the Character Council.

Be a Servant
Like many young folks, I spent a lot of time waiting tables and slaving in a restaurant kitchen. I wouldn't trade those lessons for my college diploma. I learned to put the needs of others first. Kindness and genuine concern for others comes back to you tenfold. People remember it.

Make Time to Recharge
As Bob Dylan said "He not busy being born is busy dying." I interpret this as the search for inspiration. One of the mistakes I've made this year is not carving out time for dreaming. Making time for discovery and rebirth is absolutely vital for an artist. I ain't making this mistake again.


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