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Photo Contest Insider Blog

How to Overcome Self-Doubt as a Photographer

October 24, 2016

As with most creative professions, self-doubt can also be rife within the field of photography. Whether you’re an emerging photographer or someone who considers themselves to be a seasoned professional, everyone may have doubts about their career or the work they produce from time to time.

While you can be assured that it is a common experience for any creative, I’m also going to share with you today the ways in which you can overcome self-doubt as a photographer.

Let’s get started!

Gain Clarity

Often, a lack of confidence in your work is due to a lack of clarity. Therefore, it’s important for you to ask yourself some questions. If you don’t know what your end goal is, how will you map out your road to success? More importantly, everyone’s idea, vision, and definition of success will be different, so what does success look like to you?

As I’m sure you already know, confidence comes from within and this ‘within’ stands for your hopes, dreams, goals, and visions of exactly who you want to be and how you want to live your life. Take some time to reflect on these important things, and I’d even recommend grabbing a pen and some paper so you can write your thoughts down. After all, they say that those who write down their goals have a much higher chance of acknowledging and achieving them!


Practice Makes Perfect

Here’s the (not-to-secret) secret to success: practice makes perfect.

This idea applies to the photography world too and you’ll find that successful photographers all have one thing in common – they’re constantly taking photos, even if it’s just for fun.

If you want to gain confidence in the quality of your work and become a better photographer, then you need to be experimenting with different ideas and getting to know your camera on a daily basis. Even if it’s just for 20 minutes each day. It’s that simple!


Evaluate and Think Critically About Your Work

It’s time to really get thinking about your photography woes, doubts, and other issues. What’s holding you back from truly backing yourself and your work? Are there elements of your work that you believe you can do better? What are the elements that you’re really proud of?

Sometimes it can be easy to get caught up in the fast-paced nature of being a photographer, but it’s also important to slow down from time to time and think critically about your own work. When you evaluate the things that are and are not working, you’re more likely to learn from them and grow.

It also gives you a better idea of what areas you might require additional education in, but we’ll talk a little more about that in a minute!


Improve Your Online Presence

When your photography business’ online presence is on-point, the positive knock-on effect it has on you is amazing. Not only do you feel as though your work is being appreciated, but you also notice an impressive increase in your support network, incredibly kind testimonials, and other creatives / brands wanting to interact with you.

All of these things do wonders at increasing your confidence in your work and they spur you on to create the best photography that you can. Yep, all that positivity just from perfecting your online presence!

To find out more about this topic, you can read the following articles from the Photo Contest Insider blog:

Building Your Portfolio: Tips and Tricks

Online Marketing for Photographers

Reasons Why Emerging Photographers Should Get Published in Online Magazines First



Always Educate Yourself:

Although there is great importance on practical experience when it comes to photography, it’s also vital to get education in this field too, whether it’s through online courses, tutorials, workshops or other resources.

Thankfully, gaining helpful education in photography is not difficult, nor does it have to be costly. If you missed my previous article listing the 10 best free online photography courses, then you can check it out here!

Whether you need to learn more about lighting, composition, working with models, or just about anything else that your heart desires – you’ll find an array of helpful, educational courses in the article above.

While self-doubt with your photography might seem daunting at first, I can assure you that it isn’t a big obstacle to overcome, and there are plenty of other photographers dealing with the same issues and insecurities that you are.

I recently created a free 7-day online course for photographers who need an extra helping hand in overcoming self-doubt and I invite you to join me for it here – You’ll also receive a bonus workbook and exclusive access to a secret Facebook community for the course!

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