We aren’t just born with knowledge. We have to learn it first. This seems like common sense, yet so many people are afraid of making mistakes they avoid the learning process all together. To get around that, maybe all we need to do is consider the ramifications…
Recently I’ve been doing a lot of work with up and comers in various creative industries; specifically, people who are looking to turn their passions and hobbies into a career. There have been events like lectures, presentations, and portfolio reviews; and I’ve taught a number of visual media classes. Throughout these experiences, I’ve caught myself using a term repeatedly.
Now, you might say to yourself – isn’t that the same thing as a creative professional? It’s a common phrase and it sounds very similar. And I’ll give it to you that each title shares similar traits. But there’s one big fundamental difference. You can consider it grammar or sentence structure, but it all comes down to which trait is most valuable.
So, what’s the difference between a creative professional and a professional creative?
In each title, there’s a noun and there’s an adjective. One of these individuals identifies them self as a professional while the other labels them self as a creative. They both share similar qualities, but depending on the title, there’s a different emphasis. It’s the noun that deserves priority as it defines what the person is, and not a characteristic they possess.
EXAMPLE: Gray elephant. By looking at the elephant, you know it’s gray, but that’s not what jumps out at you. The first thing you see is “Elephant.”
So, that begs the question: which is more important, being professional or being creative?
Dick Weisgrau – he’s the former Executive Director of ASMP. (for those of you who don’t know, the ASMP is the American Society of Media Photographers. It’s basically THE association of professional photographers.) Dick once said “It’s almost more important to be a good business person than it is to be a good photographer”
There are 2 things to walk away from that with: to maintain a career in the industry, you need to be both creative and professional. They’re the 2 most important aspects. However, to sacrifice any aspect of your creativity for the sake of appearing more professional is the first step in removing yourself from your passion.
If you’re a baker, or a sculptor, or an illustrator, or a photographer, or a graphic designer and you have your own company – when you meet someone and they ask what you do, do you say “I’m a business owner?”
No – You introduce yourself by your passion.
Hi. I’m Jon , I’m a photographer, and I’m a professional creative.
Who are you?
It’s the mid-winter reset!
OK so the New Year isn’t a clean-cut video game reset. The past still happened and the ramifications still exist, but that’s not what the whole “resolution” thing is all about anyway. The New Year isn’t for starting over, but for learning from last year and reinventing yourself.
Which is precisely how I’m getting down… now, where to start…
IT’S A WHOLE NEW CITY!
As of a week and a half ago, JonKPhoto is Royal Oak official! Royal Oak, Michigan is my new base of operations. You may not think 15 miles would make much of a difference when it comes to clientele, but it it’s surprising how many companies you notice in an area when you’re always there as opposed to just driving through.
There are a few details that need sorting. Paper work needs organizing. My desk still needs to be relocated – I’m currently coffee-tabling it up. But all things considered, I’m stoked for the new market. What with being a solid half-hour closer to downtown, I’m really looking forward to the new opportunities.
IT’S A WHOLE NEW COMPANY!
Well, yes and no. For about 2 years, I’ve been offering media services beyond just photography, but they were almost entirely by request. As of 3 weeks ago, this site and all my promotional whatnots are firmly rooted in multimedia.
To get a feel for what I’m talking about and to see why multimedia is so incredibly important for the success of a business, swing by my ABOUT page and take a gander at the breakdown.
IT’S A WHOLE NEW AUDIENCE!
In the last 3 months I’ve been regularly requested to critique portfolios, review projects, and speak to media students. Developing into my career I always knew the ability to communicate clearly was essential, but it never crossed my mind that I may actually enjoy public speaking.
Each and every one of my clients and projects requires a unique and completely customized solution. It’s the exact same with audiences. Whether you’re talking with a 45-year old hobbyist about to turn pro, a room full of undergrad students, or an auditorium jam-packed with high schoolers ready to start their education, you’ve GOT to connect with your audience. It’s just the kind of challenge I love.
So 2014 will see the next big evolution in JonKPhoto. Motivational seminars for current, upcoming, and future creative professionals are about to hit Metro Detroit like so much inspiration!
In the meantime, the JonKPhotoClasses site has been totally overhauled and is fully loaded with an array of personalized photo and career development courses, ready to shock-&-awe you right into your new career.
IT’S A WHOLE NEW BODY OF WORK!
If you’ve been anywhere near my site in the last few weeks, you’ve probably heard me mention the fully re-vamped fine art site. If you haven’t, then let me elaborate…
I began my photographic education as a fine art photographer. In the process, I got bits and pieces of experience with the skill sets and lighting techniques essential for commercial photography. The rest is history. But that’s not to say I ever stopped shooting the stuff I simply like to shoot.
Over the past years, my portfolio amassed a rather sizable selection of work. While organizing and reconstructing the site, I realized that while I refined and adjusted my techniques and styles, the subject matter never really changed (at least on a broad scale). It became apparent that nearly all of my imagery is of Michigan.
So the site was overhauled and is now the home to a body of work devoted to images of and inspired by Michigan – my home state and pretty much the most awesome place I’ve ever known. To get an eyeful of Great Lakes goodness, check it out at JonKArtography.com
EVEN SOME NEW PICTURES!
You know me – a conclusion isn’t a conclusion without a bit of shiny new eye candy.
In the recent holiday season, my parents gifted a lovely set of forged-steel Wusthof blades for my culinary endeavors. As with any sparkling new metal instrument, some pictures were in order. Drop me a comment and let me know what you think.
And have a glorious new year!!
A QUICK NOTE: THIS POST IS A BIT LENGTHY, SO I’VE CUT IT DOWN TO THE NITTY-GRITTY IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO READ THE WHOLE THING, THE STORY CONTINUES AFTER THE PICTURE. IT’S A FUN-FILLED BACK-STORY OF HOW I FOUND MYSELF WORKING MULTIMEDIA FOR INDEPENDENTLY OWNED BUSINESSES.
NOW ONTO THE POST!
I’ve decided to make an official upgrade in my business. Up until now, I have primarily offered photo services, with additional media upon request. JonKPhoto is now actively marketing a full selection of media services, from photo and video, to advertising and social media.
Basically, if you think your company could stand to have a classier look, market more effectively, and acquire more customers, give me a ring and we’ll chat.
In the meantime, I’ve been working on a brochure for the multimedia services. It’s a bit of a read, but there’s a pretty solid rundown of the primary forms of media that companies need and why they’re important.
… and now a little bit of back story.
When it rains, it pours. When it rains dogs… well, speaking in meteorological terms, that’s impossible, but the idea of it is straight awesome.
The last three posts were all about our fuzzy, drool-covered, blanket-hogging, best friends. So I see no need to stop while we’re on a roll. Here’s dog post numero 4.
Back in another life (it was something like 6ish years ago) I worked at a dog training company for about a year. Recently I got back into the whole Rescue League scene and organized a pet adoption fundraiser (That post down there has all the nitty gritty). Well, in the process of organizing the whole thing, I found myself in touch with that very same trainer.
You’ll never guess what happened.
OK, you probably will. I mean, why else would I be writing a post about this? So to answer the question that’s clearly been screaming from the dark recesses of your mind: YES! Yes I have taken even more pictures of dogs. Not only that, but I also re-branded his company. It looks pretty spiffy if I do say so myself.
Also – not sure how many of you fine folks have adopted or are about to adopt, but I would like to mention that Canine Resolution has my highest level of approval when it comes to learning how to make the best of your time with your best friend. Tell ’em Jon Kopacz sent ya.
Here’s some pretty stuff. Have a gander!
You may have been on the internet recently. Heck, you may be on the internet RIGHT NOW. So in all likelihood, an internet aficionado like yourself may have noticed 1 or a few hundred thousand trends rocketing their way around cyberspace.
Ignoring “Grumpy Cat” (whose name is Tartar Sauce), Gangam Style, and Reality TV, you’ve likely noticed there is a – close to overdone – trend rocking Youtube. I am, of course, reffering to Electronic/Dubstep-soundtracked montages of things like action sports, skate boarding, or people hurting themselves.
Well, try as you might, you’ll never leave ME out of the loop!
Unfortunately I am not mind-bogglingly athletic. I am neither surprisingly, moderately, or remotely athletic. This isn’t to say I weigh in at a svelte 750, but more that if I attempted an inverted kick-flip followed by a dark-house nose-grind, I’d likely find myself in a crumpled heap at the bottom of the half-pipe, soaking in the snickering humiliation of 2 dozen overly-developed tweenagers.
But back to the point…
I don’t have an affluence of athletic ability. I DO, however, have a golden retriever.
His name is Murphy and he is possibly the coolest person you’ll ever meet.
He is TOO a person…
Hey! I made a book!
In fewer than 2 months, a handful of things will happen: Christmas pandemonium will be upon us, I will engage in my first “holiday break” in years without molecular bonding between myself and a Zelda game, and I will participate in a portfolio/career show – where I will be presented to prospective contract-ees much like a slab of cow-meat is waved at overweight Americans on the 4th of July.
But I suppose I’m clinging too strongly to my personal feelings about the whole thing. In the end, I could wind up in a contract with Diesel Jeans or something… I guess we’ll see.
The super-awesome-fantastic-great-plus side of the whole ordeal is that it has forced me to finally make the portfolio book I’ve been avoiding for quite some time (years). Of course the benefit of me waiting this long is that the thing is rather up-to-date.
I could explain the finer aspects of the ProLine Paper, the beautiful image-wrapped cover, or even the hours of nervous twitching as I meticulously determined which image to place next to which. But, in the end, you probably don’t care and may not ever touch, caress, stroke, or in other words fondle this glorious, printed, eye-seducer.
So, I’ll just show you an Issuu render of the thing.
(OH- and in you’re interested in a superb coffee table book, shoot me an email and we’ll make some magic happen!)