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Olympus E-M1, f/8 @1/500, 80mm, ISO 400, no filters

Olympus E-M1, f/8 @1/500, 80mm, ISO 400, no filters

In the absolutely fantastic book “Essentialism” by Greg Mckeown, the fundamental concept is the idea that if you focus on what matters, you’ll lead a more meaningful and happier life. He uses the phrase, “less, but better,” which I absolutely love.

In fact it’s an idea that I’ve tried to adopt in my life for quite a while, though I didn’t have such an elegant phrase to describe it. I love the simplicity of the concept, and it inspired me to examine where in my life I can do less, but better.

One of the areas that immediately came to mind is my workshops. It’s something I had been thinking about for a while, but after reading the book I decided it was time to take action.

Starting in 2017 all of my workshops will be limited to five students for the Printing Masterclass (something I already started in 2016), and six students for all field workshops.

The reason for this is simple. I want to have less to manage, so that I can provide the highest quality experience for each student.

For me that means treating each student as a unique person with a unique vision. The best way for me to contribute is to give more time and attention to helping develop that vision, whether through the art and craft of photography, or creativity in general. 

I also want to create an environment where each person feels comfortable and in the best possible mindset to explore their creativity. Where their time, their perspective, their opinions are valued.

Most of all, I care deeply about making a difference. That’s a high bar for sure, but it’s where I’m most comfortable as a teacher and mentor. The best way for me to accomplish this is by minimizing quantity and maximizing quality. Less, but more.

I’ve also had positive results applying this mindset to other areas of my life, both personal and professional. I’ll share those experiences in future articles!

 

RR Jr

Experience your work in the real world. The Printmaker Masterclass is live and growing! Learn more here.

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