I need to be honest, I got up this morning and I planned on writing something else but my wife and I had some really tragic news that a close friend, Sue-Ki suddenly died. Sue-Ki was in her early 40's. When my wife found out the news, I slowly watched the emotions of shock, disbelief, and heartbreak overwhelm her. Sue-Ki was an awesome friend to my wife and has been a large part of some of her fondest memories. Sue-Ki isn't the only one who has passed away way. Our friend Stan Rollison and Derek Vandiver have also passed away way too soon. Death has touched our lives with people we know and loved a little to close recently. The common theme among all of them is that they were really great people to be and have around you.
I need to get real for a minute. I also need you to hear me on this and if you don't get anything else out of anything I write, I want to you to fully comprehend this...
Don't worry about your "likes and followers", worry about how many people will show up to your funeral.
What we do as creatives/people come with a great responsibility. We are creating memories/images that MIGHT show up as an image at someone's funeral. Hell, it could end up at your own funeral. I want you to take that responsibility seriously.
If your life is not about impacting and helping other people then it is a life wasted. I tell every one of my clients that an image at your wedding or family session has about a 300-year shelf life. What I mean by that is that image will be important to your parents, to you, to your kids and your grandkids. After that, you will be lucky to be sitting on someone's mantle.
300 years is a long time. it should be a great honor and privilege to be at an event that carries that much weight. It should not stop there. If you have an opportunity then you should find some organization to give your services away with no financial benefit. We can and should be making an impact on someone else's life. It can be anything, a women's shelter, homeless people, a food shelter or name your organization. Our earthly impact will far outweigh our virtual or online impact. Who cares if you have a ton of followers, or you went viral, or you have an image with 5k heart shape smashes. Can you take those attaboys with you to your grave? Will your 56k followers show up to your funeral? The won't and it is why we should be building true meaningful personal relationships with people. It is only then can we impact the world.
We should all strive to be great people.
If you want to donate to Sue-ki Alonzo's memorial you can do so here