Finding You in Your Work (Replay)

Finding You in Your Work

In this Live Event Replay, I cover the importance of finding yourself as an Artist.  It is imperative to consider yourself an artist.  Labels enable, by labeling yourself as an artist you will be more apt to develop a style that includes more of you in your work.

There are three simple steps that will assist you on your journey:

  1. Consider Yourself an Artist:  You are an Artist First, then a Photographer.
  2. Find Your Motivation:  Double down on your strengths and reflect on your past to find what motivates you.
  3. Go With Your Gut: Rely on your emotions to assist you.  Don’t hide your emotions in your work or your viewer won’t connect with it.



  1. Blake, One statement of yours is both informing me and inhibiting me from calling myself an artist: “You qualify you as an artist.” I have not looked at the title that way and don’t know if I can. There are some titles we bare simply because we are: Father, daughter, neighbor, student. But there are other titles we must earn: professor, lawyer, humanitarian. I earned the title of my profession by demonstrating a competency in the vocation or discipline. I have always viewed the title “artist” as being one I must earn and that it does take others to qualify or grant me that mantle. You are an artist because of the knowledge you have accumulated and translated into work that a consensus of people recognize as art. Many of us are very willing to support your artistry through acquiring your products and lessons as well as availing ourselves of the many free gifts you provide every week. You earned that title and we as a collective qualified you for it. While I have no ambitions to sell any of my work, I am not sure what I have done would be recognized as artistry. I would love to be recognized as an artist, but am having difficulty feeling or recognizing in myself that I have earned, what I consider, that honorable and elevated title.

    Now the so what. Will my artistic and photographic efforts be diminished by not recognizing myself as deserving the title, artist? Probably not.. Is my creativity stifled…maybe, and that is the awakening where your live event has pushed me to go. I frequently feel my capture and processing skills are inferior to others I see. I believe I approach situations with a list of steps and not as a problem to solve, sometimes the steps work; sometimes they aren’t anywhere near what I saw or wanted to represent. Perhaps taking the path of a problem solver–creative artist–I can introduce the creativity and style I want in my images. I am going to make that enlightenment my biggest take-away from your event.

    Thank you for the thought and insight….Bruce

    • …and here we see the heart of the problem – Artist as a title. Is artist a title we do have to earn? If I’d see it that way I’m for sure lightyears away from beeing an artist, with never beeing educated in some way or form of arts. Bruce, a year ago I would have agreed to everything you said here completely.
      For me it was Blakes passionate pleading for considering ourselves as artists when he released Palette Effects. Did I need a ‘damn sticky note on my monitor?’ LOL. Blake is right. We hold ourselves back whe we don’t even TRY!! So I decided to try and in a way I cannot describe some magic happened. Just the decision to try removed restrictions im my mind I had set for myself without knowing: That is not photo-realistic? I don’t need my images to be photo-realistic – others can do that way better. Color grading? Glow? What will the others think? Ermm, does it matter? Let me quote Jim Welninski: ‘and most of the time it’ll scare you half to death. After all, you’ll be putting a piece of your soul out there and everyone else will think you’re a loon.’
      Okay, maybe artists are allowed to be loons (-:
      Just the desicion to go and try some creativity helped me to tear down some of those hurdles.
      Do I consider myself to be an artist? Now, probably a baby artist trying to walk in way too big shoes.
      What do we define as art? Our creative expression? I don’t know if that is enough. I think it is about trying to walk that path.


  2. Blake
    This was really good for me at this stage of my development. Thanks for it.

  3. Appreciate you putting the replay here.

    Great topic! Touched on a few “discomfort” points for me and gave me some things to think about. Especially, where I sometimes let the joy of the photographer-artist be sucked away by the “technologist.”

    • I know the feeling. Man, I get so sucked into my gear sometimes I forget that I used to paint with $1 paint brushes and anything I could get my hands on. I once stretched a $2 wal-mart clearance tablecloth on a 4 foot by 6 foot stretcher because canvas was too expensive. I sitll have that painting, lol

      I need to remember those often when I get in a rut.

      • Nice. You’re making me miss my K-1000 Blake. Basic as they came, but I had the best time time with it. Not that I shoot with anything high-end now. But it brings me joy just the same.

        Like last fall when I was belly-crawling on Virginia Beach tracking a sand piper along the water’s edge. The look on my wife’s face was priceless. So was the smile on my face she couldn’t see. 🙂 Not that she was upset, I think she was just little shocked.

        Something I should probably remember when I need a little inspiration.


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