Just begin

Actress Will van Kralingen ©Michel Porro

Actress Will van Kralingen ©Michel Porro

It sounds crazy and duh, but by just beginning something you believe in, the rest follows. Imagine a photographer with a very varied portfolio and skills. He is quite good at a lot of things but not really excelling at any one specialty.

He looks at other photographers who made their mark in the business. Succesful and well known. He photographed famous people, writers, actors, singers etc. How on earth can I get to do that kind of work he asks. It was so far of his scope of what he thought possible for him self, he never even imagined him pursuing it.

One day his partner told him; 'Hey, your work is great and you can do that too. You can make them happy with your work and personality. And once you have done one or two, you'll see you may gain trust and others will follow. But more importantly, you'll start believing more in yourself. All those famous people are just people like you and me".

So he started calling around. It wasn't a walk in the park and he almost gave up. Then he received an invite from a kind picture editor at a magazine. The content was aimed at women over 40. Things were looking up and off he went to the headquarters where he met the kind and soft spoken editor. She looked at his book. He didn't think much of it but she looked him in the eye. She said: 'I see that you really want this.' And she gave him a chance to portray his first 'famous' actress. He remembers the shoot like it was yesterday. One of the kindest women he's ever met. The images were well received and soon after he was sent on many assignments for this magazine. Other clients followed and it was the start of his portrait photography specialisation.

What he learnt in the process is that one should never assume anything, ever. "That's not for me". Or, I won't be good enough". That's for others to decide but you have to try first. You can win or learn, you never loose.

That photographer is thankful though that the kind editor gave him a break. That was twelve years ago. The actress passed away in 2012 and he will always cherish that unforgettable experience. You may have guessed the photographer is me.