…Eggs in one basket…
There I was springing into the new season with fresh aplomb when boom! News in that the Corona Virus is actually here to stay a little bit longer than we all thought or at least, would have an impact on our lives a little more than we all thought.
With friends who are expert mechanics, getting race cars ready, me getting Big Red (My Series2a Land Rover) ready and an eye on which motorbikes I would start to get a press loan on for stories and events, one by one the photo jobs are getting cancelled, postponed and ignored, and us sole traders being left without payments.
Events cancelled: today I learn that the Goodwood Members Meeting is postponed, I had a nice little fortuitous story going on that one, my Le Mans job was discussed last week ‘that all non-essential activities are being withdrawn’ and yesterday my speaking invitation at The Photography Show was postponed.
What does this mean for me as a photographer? Everything. This was three properly good photographic jobs. Jobs that pay for three months of my life. What with the actual job itself and book and print sales afterwards, not to mention the ongoing networking effects of being at those venues with jobs thereafter.
I am not alone.
Luckily for me I have a couple of ideas up my sleeve, one to finish a radio drama I started – as my excuses of ‘being too busy’ are certainly not applying today, and another to create some photographic tutorials via video- well, we’ll see how that one goes, but neither idea bring in that regular mortgage income, on the day as invoiced, as expected. These ideas are entrepreneurial and is that now the key to us sole traders, who have relied on others to pay for our daily lives?
In 2008 I had to think quickly to change from film to digital (and believe me, the digital cameras on offer in 2008 made me almost give up photography). I retrained as a journalist, so today I utilise both photography and journalism and save the client a fortune – one thought.
Today I feel very 2008, I feel very “re think, quick and fast Platman”
I spent the morning on the telephone speaking to would be clients who, all said the same to me, “Lara, as soon as we get more of a clue on when we are getting the show back on the road then…”
I am lucky. I have a roof over my head. And I have a car that I simply sit in and it makes me smile for hours. I literally do not have to go anywhere, I nut and bolt restored that car and she rocks my world, but this is not financial progression. This is contentment for here and now.
Perhaps that is all I can ask for today.
But please think about the sole traders who really have no security or a love of their life to assist their mood. I am not sure what we can do apart from lookout for each other in this new isolation, for we are always isolated anyway we all work alone anyway, nothing new there except now, we are unable to come and play out properly.
Stay safe everyone and wash your hands.