Talk with anyone who plays tennis and they’ll tell you that in order to improve their game, they have to play against players who are better than they are. Tennis players are ranked on a numeric scale, I’m a 3.0 so I like to play against 3.5 or 4.0 players. In doing so, I like to think my game will improve.
The same is true for photographers. Attend any gathering of photographers and there will always be the bunch of “grumpy old guys” in the corner talking about how things “used to be” and hoping those good old days will come back. Fact is, they won’t. Get as far away from that gang as possible, they’ll only bring you down.
Instead, seek out photographers who are succeeding in spite of the economy, in spite of tightened budgets, in spite of all the negativity out there. Hang with them, hang with winners. Some will share what’s working for them and what’s not. A few will give advice. Winning attitudes are infectious. Want to be successful? Hang with winners, observe, listen, and have a positive attitude. Your business will likely benefit!