A few weeks ago I started tweeting with this hastag #dreambigandleap. It said everything for me; I’ve continued to use it as a source of inspiration for myself.
After I did creativeLIVE in May something changed for me. I had a serious internal shift (I know this sounds crazy but I did) After opening my heart and being completely vulnerable to 200,000 people online and many of you I was forever changed. The act of opening myself up like that gave me the most incredible gift. It emboldened me; it actually made me more courageous and brave. Like Eve Ensler says, “the big door inside of me flew open.” For me it flew so open it made me brave enough to see myself and to see what my next step needed to be to reach my own dreams. But more importantly, it gave me the courage to say them out loud and actually do something about it.
We all wake up at different times and over the years some of my mentors have told me that I needed to be in New York for many reasons. I never really heard them or considered it. But when I was in Boston last month, after a serious conversation with someone I respect in the industry I finally heard it. I woke up.
I realized that if I wanted to push myself- my career- even further it was time for me to go back to New York City and throw my name in the ring again at an entirely different level.
Years ago, I started my career there after graduating from college. Full of enthusiasm, hard work, and ready to sweat I pounded the pavement as a photographer. I was at the bottom of the bottom. Assisting commercial and magazine photographers in New York. Barely making a living, squeaking by to pay my rent and bills while sharing a 2-bedroom apartment with 2 friends on the edge of Alphabet City and the East Side in Manhattan. My parents, convinced that I couldn’t get good tortillas and salsa in New York City would send me monthly care packages filled with corn and flour tortillas from their favorite tortilleria and there would always be homemade salsa. A little bit of home.
After a few years doing that I left the city and photography for a small period, maybe 6 months. I travelled to Central America, wrote a lot and thought really hard about what it was I wanted. In the end, well… we know how it turns out. I came back to photography.
And so, here I am. Having hard but beautiful conversations with my loved ones, family and friends about being inspired, creatively growing- dreams- and reaching for them.
I am moving to New York City as a professional photographer, but this time the game is different. I’m established with years of experience under my belt and working relationships with some of the top editors and publishers in the industry.
I say to all of you, whatever it is you want to do, let that big door inside of you fly open, be brave enough to hear it, see it and have the courage to actually do it.
Come with me on this journey, dream big and leap.