the kessler theater in dallas texas taken by dallas photographer, jason ulsrud

The High Price of being Inspired

Have you ever found a photographer who totally and completely inspired you? Leaving you speechless and wishing from the depths of your soul you could make images like them?

For me, it’s Composite Photographers like Erik Almas and Erik Johansson who leave me speechless. (funny they’re both Erik’s, huh?)

Every single time I look through their galleries, I’m truly humbled and leave wishing I could be as good as they are. Mastering the art of Composite Photography and so beautifully sharing their Vision of the world in Amazing Images.

Are there photographers who inspire you like this?

Here’s the thing with Inspiration, it’s a double edged sword I believe can have more negative effects than positive.

Let me explain why you should be careful of the Inspiration trap.

Inspiration Leads to Imitation

Have you ever heard the saying, “Why reinvent the wheel”, which really means, just do what everyone else is doing and you’ll get there much faster. Another way to look at it is, “When you Imitate Success, you become Successful.”

In theory, I see how this makes sense, but in reality, I can’t imagine anything worse than imitating someone else’s creativity and success.

Imagine what the world would look like if Picasso would have imitated Michelangelo, or if Steve Jobs would have imitated Bill Gates, or Jeff Bezos would have imitated the Barnes & Noble model of business.

Way too often, being Inspired by creativity gets mistaken for Imitating what has already been created, so let your Inspirations help guide you and resist any temptation of letting them lead you.

Inspiration Limits Motivation

One of the HUGE Risks of becoming Inspired, and I suffer from this at times, is it can create self defeating dialogue that puts out the fires of Motivation.

“Oh, I will never be able to create Composites like that”, so you stop, or “I only wish I could be that good at Composite Photography”, so you stop.

The absolute HARDEST part about creativity is staying Motivated, and in the beginning of your Creative Journey, when nobody seems to be paying attention, it’s Extremely EASY to let Inspiration kill your Motivation.

Inspiration Blinds Vision

Vision is a funny thing, and for most people, it’s Super Hard to translate the Vision within their heads to a Composited image, writing, song, or any other Expression they can share with the world.

When you look at other photographers work too much, you run the Risk of becoming Blinded to your own Unique Vision.

While I absolutely love the work of Composite Photographers like Michael Herb and Joel Grimes, I simply don’t see the world that way, making it impossible for me to create images that look like theirs.

When you can embrace your own Unique View of the world, you can enjoy being Inspired without the Risk of Vision Blindness.

That’s a Wrap

Believe me, Inspiration is 100% necessary, and every Creative needs to be Inspired to Create, but there’s a fine line between letting Inspiration guide your Vision and letting Inspiration become your Vision.

Inspiration comes from everything around you, so open yourself to the world around you, and become Inspired by your own Life.

As a Creative myself, I wrote this to share my own personal struggles, even to this day, with being Inspired by the Amazing work of other Composite Photographers.

Who Inspires You? What Inspires You?

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