Portraits in Black & White
Stephen F. Dennnstedt
To see more of my Fine Art images go to Indochine Photography
Creative people (you) who don’t or won’t express their creative natures (denial) are committing spiritual and emotional suicide. You might just as well put a gun to your head and pull the trigger. One form of suicide is just slower than the other (denial or gun, your choice). Make the effort, do it for yourself. You don’t necessarily have to monetize your effort, but at least make the effort to explore your God-given creativity.
Remove the naysayers from your life, extricate yourself from the toxic environments that preclude and hamper your creativity, rid yourself of those unnecessary burdens (they serve no useful purpose). There will always be someone to tell you that you can’t, or that you’re not good enough. That person is often a family member (spouse) or a close friend (and that’s bullshit).
Who needs it (or them)? Instead surround yourself with positive influences, no one needs the negative in their life. Life is precious and way too short, especially for creative people. The new Indie-artists (photographers, writers, painters and craftsman) are a breed apart. Not waiting to be discovered, they have struck out on their own to pursue their dreams (their goals).
If you’re an Indie-artist then I congratulate you. If you are trying to convert your creative talent into hard dollars then I doubly congratulate you. You’ve got guts and determination, because it’s not an easy road you’ve chosen. It requires not only creative talent (an artistic mind), but a certain degree of business acumen. It’s the whole left-brain versus right-brain conundrum; few are blessed (or cursed) with a 50/50 hemispheric brain split.
Do you sometimes feel that it can’t be done? Join the club. I am here to tell you that it can be done (and at any age or stage of your life). At age 64 I renounced a successful, thirty-year banking career, a toxic twenty-four year marriage and left an equally toxic political, cultural and economic environment in the United States to pursue my dreams of becoming a professional photographer, writer and world traveler. That was four years ago.
Having left the States bankrupt and penniless (but free of all constraints and happy) I have accomplished the following: I own my own photography business, Indochine Photography, at www.IndochinePhotography.me, I write this international blog, Expat Journal, followed in 125 countries around the world and I am a full-time, location-independent, global slo-traveler.
I was “the” staff photographer for The Yucatan Times newspaper in Mexico for a year, and I still contribute as a freelance photojournalist (retaining my press credentials). I was the official photographer for the Kaxil Kiuic Biocultural Reserve and Puuc Jaguar Conservation. I’ve sold my Fine Art prints in Soho Galleries, Cafe la Boheme, and around the world through my online gallery at Indochine Photography.
I am no longer penniless. I am no longer one of Henry David Thoreau’s [M]ass of men who lead lives of quiet desperation. I have pursued, captured and continue with my dream of becoming a professional photographer, writer and world traveler. I am now 68-years old (closing in on 69), and I’m freer and happier than I’ve ever been. I dodged the bullet: I did not commit spiritual and emotional suicide. I followed my creative dream. You can too.
Stephen F. Dennstedt
Photographer, Writer and World Traveler
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