The Importance of Showing up and a How-To on Set Building

There are loads of articles and online tutorials showing you how to achieve certain looks or perfect a set technique. But more important than this, for me, is showing up.

This is advice that I have been given for years, but I only just started to listen to it. In a previous life I wanted to be a professional cyclist. I was ok, but I was never going to win the Tour de France. Nevertheless, I recently looked at who was riding as a pro in this country and I saw a load of cyclists who were not as good as I was. Yet they were making a living from doing what they loved. It was at this point that I realized, they continued to show up, whilst people like myself slipped away and went on to try new things. 

The same is very true in photography. Having been in the game for a little over a decade, I have seen a lot of very talented photographers come and go, whilst those who had very little natural ability (I will include myself in this camp) who stuck at it and showed up every day and did a little more, finally have made it to be professionals. 

In this video I go over some advice that was passed onto my from my partner about a famous writer who was asked about what it is like to be a creative writer and how he deals with writers block. To which he responded that it is hard work and even when there is nothing knew in his head, he sits at his desk and churns out work. 

Showing up can take many forms, from making sure that every day alongside your 9-5 that you schedule your social media, or perhaps make sure you create and update a mood board each evening before bed. If you are a full time photographer it can mean being in the studio grinding through the admin or writing articles, emails, invoices, and all of the other un-sexy things that we have to do to pay the bills. 

At the end of the vlog, I go over how I built a corner piece to be used as a set in a workshop that I ran over the weekend. It is certainly something that can be scaled up and down. Also, I managed to make it which means pretty much anyone could do the same. 

Scott Choucino's picture

Food Photographer from the UK. Not at all tech savvy and knows very little about gear news and rumours.

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What brand is the reverse mount octa @6:30? Top right of frame w/ what looks like Bowen on it

I am 99.9% sure that it is a bowens one. You can't get them anymore but elinchrom make a really good one.

That one Broncolor pack and head seem so lonely.

He certainly needs more friends. I only have two heads and one pack. They are pretty old, but put out 3200 watts!

Scott is my spirit animal.

Thanks Bert

I almost NEVER show up for bookings... Is this why my career hasn't taken off?