Day 105 – I remember why I chose not to be a photographer

As many of my friends know, I used to do photography a lot. Like seriously, I nearly quit medical school to pursue that career path. I carried my camera every day and I absolutely love capturing moments and tell stories through a lens.

But I was also in medical school, I tried doing both, and I failed an exam. Then I was faced with a reality choice, focus on medical school or continue as you are and risk disaster (kicked out of med school for doing poorly in exams).

I actually look up and did some online research on photography as careers. Obviously there are some super successful ones. But most people are average. It is a cut-throat competitive business. And at that time with smartphones was on the rise and DSLR being super popular (this was 2010-11), that path is gonna be so much harder.

I made a conscious decision to ‘retire’ from photography. I put my shutter-bug in a box and kept it hidden from sight. I focused on the difficulty of photography rather than the joy of it. And eventually, I stopped thinking about it.

I’ve been trying to make a come back since I graduated from Medical School. Obviously it is not the same as I remember but everyday, I’m putting some work into it.

In the past week, I’ve been given the pleasure and curse of being the hirer of a wedding photographer. I’ve contacted numerous photographers for availability and quotes. Discussed potential problems and backup systems. Discussed services. And look at a lot of images whilst keeping a detailed opinion notes about each photographer style. Some were obviously not suitable. Some were way too expensive. Some were way too cheap. Some had styles that I knew we wouldn’t like. Like many things in life, it came down to two choices. Reviewed my notes, re-looked at the images, looked at the prices and services. Make a decision.

It is almost like looking at myself in a different universe. A universe where I chose a different passion. And I can kinda see myself, being the photographer rejected. Being passionate but it doesn’t pay back. Even though I was doing the rejecting, but somehow I feel the emotional pain.

I’m still confident with my choice and I don’t think I made the wrong choice, but the emailed I received….god, it planted some seeds of doubt about my choice. But at the same time it made me really happy AND sad about my retirement from photography.

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