“Why videos?”

Well, I was explaining to a young woman I knew, that having turned 70, I was looking for a way to build a new sideline occupation for interest and income.

Small businesses are always interesting, I told her. I love people’s stories and enjoy taking photos. My idea is to showcase the owners, as they are such an important part of their success. So, I’m going to a workshop with a company called Great Escape Publishing to learn to make videos.

“Great!” she said. “You can do one for me when you get back and I’ll pay you in my skincare products.”

So, in fact, I was launched before I had even begun… and now I had to seriously learn and become this videographer. 

After the workshop, I returned to my home in rural Australia on a high, after a wonderful week of immersion learning and camaraderie. Now a part of the generous Great Escape community, I had been informed and encouraged. I felt ready for action.

Talking about this at my dance class soon after, one of the women said she’d like to hear more about it. Suzi became my second project, with her small business as a buyer’s agent in the local area, and she paid me in computing help.

This became very valuable, as I negotiated the technical challenges of putting together the videos and editing them. It was fascinating and definitely out of my experience and comfort zone, but so much fun!

I planned each project using an interview/feedback model, to make sure the client knew the result they wanted, and I could find ways to produce that. Then I arranged to shoot the footage, always with an eye on the weather forecast. We had props for atmosphere and even a glass of Australia’s best bubbly one day, when the star was too nervous to talk.

I’m constantly learning. Most recently, I have drawn on general photography skills from the Ultimate Photo Workshop to showcase my property for sale on my real estate agent’s website.

There are also many small videos of grandchildren for the archives. I now reach for my camera, or phone, and capture a few moments as a matter of course.

Success, as a process, comes in many guises. One of the best is recognition of where and how to improve. I now know that video is an immediate medium, which needs to be regularly updated to remain of-the-moment and relevant.

These experiences have kept me afloat during difficult times, and I am now beginning to see my way clearly to the next step. As I reflect on my photographic adventures, I realize that they’re just the beginning…

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