So. I made a goal for myself. It wasn’t a secret goal but I haven’t written about it, yet. It’s a pretty important one so I figured I should write it out for accountability sake, if nothing else. My goal is to make an impression at the NYCfotoworks portfolio review. A coming out party, if you will. Not out of the closet but out into the world of full-time food photography. It’s not as simple as it sounds.

My body of work is anemic. To be fair, it has barely been six months since I decided that was the direction I wanted to go. But I still need a pool of twenty times what I have to choose from for a quality portfolio. So I have a limited time to shoot enough images so that it looks like I’ve been shooting food for years, cull those down to 30ish stunning images, make high-quality prints and custom bind them in an impressive-looking portfolio.

My time limit is 65 days. I know this because I downloaded a countdown app when I first found out about the portfolio review dates. There it is on my phone, counting down the days I have left.

Oh, and if I didn’t have enough pressure, I decided a postcard or little accordion-fold booklet wasn’t a good enough promotional piece to leave behind with the reviewers. Nope. I decided I needed to self-publish a little cookbook for self-promotion. I’m writing recipes and photographing the results for the book hoping that some photo editor or art buyer will find it useful enough to keep it around and maybe hire me.

The financial and time commitment to this goal is substantial but the potential pay-off is huge. It’s an opportunity to meet face-to-face with photo editors from major magazines and art buyers from national ad agencies. The worst-case scenario is I get some valuable feedback from the people who may hire me one day. Best-case, I start a dialog that gets me working. But it’s all a waste if I don’t present myself and my work in the best possible way.

For the next 65 days, my every thought needs to be about getting everything in order for my October 23rd date with destiny. Too corny? Too far? Maybe. But I’d rather overstate and over prepare than waste time, money and opportunity.

I’ll keep you posted.