Untapped resources

At the Market

It happened. I finally broke down and bought a real digital camera. While this might not be so significant to a lot of people this is a big deal for me. Photography is my lost love. I've been taking pictures since I was thirteen. I have a degree in photography. I also haven't had a functioning camera in almost ten years. I'm sure you are wondering what kind of person goes to school for photography and then puts down the camera when they graduate? Well, I am.

I could give you a bunch of excuses: I had bills to pay, not enough time, the economy fell apart and no one wanted to buy art. That is not the point of all this. The point isn't even that I'm going to start taking pictures again. The point is why.


Wright and Rede's table at the Cleveland Flea


When I started this business I knew I had a wide array of skills that I was hoping would some how translate into income. I was good at working with my hands.  Leather work was my focus at the time. So leather work is what I started with. Once I launched my business I began to realize that I had a lot more skills I could be taking advantage of.  Skills I never really thought about until I needed them. My background in photography has allowed me to not only take quality photographs of my work (I can not stress how important a good photograph is when marketing on the internet. Your product is only as good as what people can see on their screens after all.) but to write a story about who I am with my images. No one wants to read about how hard my day was. A picture, taken from my point of view (feet up, beer in hand, as the sun is setting) instantly conveys a message and lets the viewer stand in my shoes for just a minute.


Relaxing after a long day


Then I started to realize that I had a lot of other skills that were underutilized. My years spent as a bartender helps me to engage just about anyone I meet. Talking to strangers is hard, but because of my years in the service industry I do it without a second thought. I could even argue that my high school English classes are finally paying off. Having been drilled over and over again on how to express myself clearly (Thanks, Mrs. Morgan) I am able to write in an intelligible manner.


Key rings at the Cleveland Flea


My point is that when I dreamed up this job it was one dimensional: Leather worker.  In reality it is more like:  Leather Worker (photography and bar tending experience required. Must also have a working knowledge of basic construction, inventory management, journalism, and bad jokes). So what skills do you have that you could be taking better advantage of? Did you really like statistics in school? Did you take dance classes? Are you a horse whisperer? Maybe it is time to take inventory and make sure you are taking advantage off all of your assets, not just the ones in front of you. After all, if your business reflects who you are as a person shouldn't it reflect all that you are capable of?