*Before you read this, I want you to understand that I put my feelings in my blog posts. I am a personal photographer, so it comes easy to me to put my feelings out there. Writing has always been a healthy outlet for me and my blog is the perfect place for that. Even so, I hovered hesitantly over that “publish” button because I was afraid that after reading this post, people might associate negative feelings with my business, and that that is not what this post is about. I have been so blessed with my photography journey. Anyway, read at your own discretion. You’ve been warned!*

I started this business 5 years ago. I was 15. It’s funny because way back then, and even just a year ago, I really thought I had my life figured out. I had the college picked out, the career under my belt, the boyfriend, and the whole fairytale dream. Oh, 15-year-old Taylor, you had no idea. The college isn’t yours, the boyfriend isn’t yours, and the fairytale turns out to be just that… a fairytale. It’s not real.

I’m REALLY good at dreaming. Like, scary good. I can have a whole story written in a matter of seconds… the setting being a beautiful city that I’ve never been to, the perfect guy that I’ve never met, an immense circle of friends, and of course, the perfect studio. It’s a skill, a talent even. But a dreamer’s dream can also be their downfall. I’m not sure if I’m making any sense to you.

I spent 5 years devoting myself to one of my dreams. I didn’t realize I was doing it, ┬ábut my passion has soared with every click of the shutter. My heart has delighted with each vision coming to life… right in my viewfinder, right at my fingertips. I cried a little but loved A LOT these five past years. I’ve never felt like I’ve belonged in the way that I feel behind that lens, and yet, right now, late at night when I’m all alone and the stress of school is looming, I feel a little lost.

See, when you devote yourself 100% to a dream, you make a decision. You make the choice to put that dream at the top of your priority list. That’s how you succeed… you make the decision to do so. You think that when you have reached your version of success, happiness will be at the finish line. And when you notice that your social life has gone, your time to yourself has become minimum, and your motivation is running low… congratulations. Take a look at your dream. It’s thriving, right? That’s where the problem lies. Because you aren’t happy… at least not as happy as you should be, because balance is key in life and that is where I am wistfully lacking right now. Balance. It’s not easy when your dream is your one true love… Not easy at all… but real success IS happiness and that kind of success is only possible with balance.

No, this isn’t quite how I imagined my life to be, but I’m trusting that God led me here for a reason. I’m learning that I’ll probably never have my life figured out, and I’m accepting that that’s okay. Maybe that perfect city, perfect guy, perfect friends, and perfect studio doesn’t exist… and that’s okay too. I’ve found something in life that most people only search for: Passion… and that, I am ALWAYS grateful for.

Yes, that’s a picture of me and my new ink… inspired by, of course, my love for what I do and my beautiful big sister that I miss daily.

xo

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  1. tonya says:

    Absolutely beautifully written. And a beautiful picture. Taylor you are an amazing young woman. Stay strong, keep your head held high; I truly believe there is nothing you cant accomplish and you should be more than proud of yourself. Follow your passion and let yourself be happy. Hang in there. You are an all around wonderful person and deserve nothing but the best.

  2. Meg says:

    Taylor, you are indeed wise beyond your years. Finding peace and not frustration in your discovery of yet another facet of your personality is true maturity! Being open to what life is teaching you and what it has to offer, letting yourself learn through those new experiences is a tool not many 20 year olds can grasp. You are right, be patient…be open…be sure that whatever is meant to happen, will happen in its own time. One of the best things you have learned as a photographer and artist is I am sure…grasp the moment…moments are fleeting opportunities for love, life appreciation, sharing of your vision through that lens. Living through tough, challenging times be they partnership, academic, friends, family etc encourage us to grow as individuals…to be ready to LIVE what life is going to offer down the road. You are a very talented young woman who has been given the tools of determination, hard work, and a love of people to share with the world. I, for one, take great pleasure in watching you grow and unfold.

  3. Amy says:

    Hi,
    I know this dream all too well, you see I have the same dream and live it everyday. For years I sacrificed my personal time to commit myself to my dream. I am a mother of four, and a wife, and a full time student and a photographer. Whew! I quickly became BURNT OUT! I lost my happiness, soon I began to dread picking up my camera. I was overwhelmed and exhausted. I cried and cried when the thought of “letting go” of my dream, almost came my reality. I closed my studio, packed my equipment and locked away my dream for months, until it hit me! What was I thinking? I was taking a marketing class when I realized that a business is not ran by one person. I began to really think about how I ran my business and my dream. Sure, I had the talent, and the loyal clients. But it wasn’t enough to push me to where I needed to be. I was alone, with the occasional help of my awesome husband, but that was it. Then I realized that most businesses are ran by more than one person, and I didn’t have to do it all by myself. Recently, I moved back to my hometown and I have merged with one of my closest friends (who also is a photographer with the same dream). So we have started our journey together! And believe it or not, but other area photographers are also wanting to join our team. Needless to say, we have unpacked our equipment, and are starting over to give our clients even more. I just want you to know that I understand exactly how you feel, but know that you don’t have to do it all by yourself. Hang in there Taylor, your work is stunning and amazing!

  4. Marisa Twigg says:

    Hi there Taylor!
    I just wanted to say.. This is really what I needed to hear. This post is exactly what I feel, and have been going through lately. I needed to hear something like this.
    I graciously thank you for sharing, because you have truly inspired me. Passion is an amazing quality to have. It really is hard starting off young, and finding the balance between school, friends, boyfriend, a job, and everything else that seems to pop up in life. I appreciate the sincerity and willingness to share with the world. Thanks for making another dreamer’s day, Taylor! (:

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