The great and amazing, Panda with Lil’ P on the bed © 2013 Terrell Neasley
“Control your own destiny or someone else will.”
~Jack Welch 

This last blog post made me recall a conversation I had recently with an individual whom, without going into specifics, lets just say I had to engage him. During the course of the discussion, this individual became appalled at a couple of strong declarations I made in which I described being adamant about life decisions which he determined to be unwise and unforgiving to say the least.

Art Model, Panda © 2013 Terrell Neasley

There are, for sure, some things I am simply adamant about, but I will not say absolute and resolute. One of these is that I have no intention of returning to a regular 9 to 5 job. I follow that statement up with this interjection, that in no way am I minimizing anybody’s job, way of life, or economic choices. We all do what we have to do. My choices are for me because they suite me and are not intended to be a model for anyone else. Right now, that’s not my path. I’ve been there and done it. I’ve made money for other people, given the priority of my time to other people, and sacrificed my own well-being for other people. My choices, my time, and my money are regulated by me at this point. When I have means, I do things. When I’m broke, I sit my ass down.

Art Model, Panda
© 2013 Terrell Neasley

Where I am not so resolute in this statement is when opportunities present themselves where my objectives can be realized via employment under an entity that pays extremely well and there is no significant sacrifice on my time and personal objectives. Case in point…I work 2 days at B&C Camera. I am employed by my friend and fellow photographer, Joe Dumic. I get a salary (not an extremely well one, I grant you), but I also get to work under a genius of a businessman. My time is not significantly sacrificed and when I need more time, I take it. As his friend, I am considerate about this. I don’t just leave him high and dry with no notice. That’s just rude.

The aforementioned individual at the beginning of this post could not understand my position or mentality to commit myself to my choices. I know what is important to me and that means more than selling a product or service that isn’t aligned with my goals. Now its time to work for myself and my own objectives. If I fail, then its on me. I’ve played by the rules with the job thing and I simply can’t leave my future in the hands of a company who’s management operates for the benefit of the owner(s). I am simply a means for a function of profit that is not my own where cutting labor is often a first step towards minimizing costs when management screws up.

“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”
~George Bernard Shaw 

Art Model, Panda © 2013 Terrell Neasley

I feel confident in my faith, my upbringing, and myself. But when I do fail, I am also confident in the fact that I am resilient and resourceful enough to get up and try again. I have a history of tenacity and I think this is my time to give it a shot doing what I love. Photography is not only a means to that end, but also a reason for my passions. Your’s might be fishing. I served with a guy who bought a Dodge truck and a bass fishing boat from winnings he was awarded over the course of a year. That was his passion and he built upon it. Guess what he did after the Army! The man became a pro bass fisherman. He told me it was the best job in the world, but really he meant it was the best job in the world FOR HIM.

Art Model, Panda © 2013 Terrell Neasley

Photography may not give me ALL the means for my objectives. I’m not sure I’ll ever get my Tartan series yacht and circumnavigate the world sailing the South Pacific indefinitely on photography alone. I’m not even sure I can travel to the upcoming places I need to visit by way of photography. [Oh yeah, if you need a personal photog on YOUR travels and excursions, feel free to look me up. I am the bomb-diggidy.] If I can manage this, then that will simply be a dream come true. But whatever means I employ to achieve those goals, it won’t take away from my photography. “Life is either a Great Adventure or Nothing”. I chose the Great Adventure.