I’ve been telling myself all week that I really had to begin focusing on writing that 2013 wrap-up blog, if not for the VonWonglings that have been loyally following me over the last couple years but for myself…

Recaps are important, to take the time and figure out where you are in life, how things have changed and… if indeed, you’ve been going the right direction this whole time. 2012 was an exciting year of change, evolution, possibility… but what about 2013? Could it compare?

Objectively speaking, I can’t help but feel like 2013 was somewhat of a disappointment. It was a great year, no doubt, with adventures, travels and projects galore but somehow, it just feels like I didn’t reach my full potential.

Despite my 48 blog posts from this year bringing in over 420,000 views, 44 videos on youtube bringing in over 1.1 million hits and almost doubling my fan base on Facebook from 15k to 28k I can’t help but feel like I have stagnated in my growth as an artist.

Creating regular blog posts, viral videos, teaching international workshops and becoming a public speaker are elements that have taken the front row seat and while they have undeniably yielded some amazing results, I can’t help but feel that I have made no concrete tangible steps forward in my career.

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Yet looking back there is nothing that I would have done differently because I have always followed my heart to do what felt right, reached out to grab opportunities as they presented themselves and worked through every challenge, obstacle and heartache that came up.

From…

  • collaborating with companies across the world: launching the new SmugMug, creating promo imagery for ioSafe by lighting their drive on fire, promote the revolutionary Light Blaster, push the Elinchrom Ranger Quadra system to its limits with Vistek, and combine the LensBaby with water guns to name a few.
  • Co-directing and producing a Game of Thrones fan fiction with an amazing crew of people
  • Creating my first Viral video ft. 13 Nikon Cameras and the amazing Andrew Kesler.
  • Getting my first billboard shooting a campaign for Antoine Laoun in Montreal, Canada.
  • Playing Creative Director in the world’s largest Where is Waldo shoot in Traustein, Germany
  • Teaching workshops across Vancouver, Kelowna, Michigan, London, Toronto, Edmonton and talking on Creative Live, WPPI, PPOC and Profusion.
  • Getting published on the cover of Nikon Pro and featured in PhotoLife among a few others that I can’t quite remember…
  • And last but not least having Adobe fly out to do a four day documentary on me (results in 2014)I don’t think I wasted 2013.Life is a journey, and mine in particular has been a roller coaster.I do plan on doing things a little bit different next year, and in a sense, that’s the purpose of this post. I have reached the inevitable conclusion that you cannot be everywhere all at once, and slowing down the frequency at which I make BTSV and blog posts will be critical to growing as an artist and as a creative.Similarly, workshops and speaking engagements will have to be sliced down as I’m finding myself travelling so much that I hardly have any time to put things properly together.

    Shooting Nicole and bringing her dream to life, has changed my perspective on things and I’m realizing that it’s possible to not only inspire and teach, but also to create images that matter, all at the same time.

    I am not sure where it will bring me, and I’m not sure what the future will bring… but one step at a time.

    Thank you all for being a part of this journey, through the ups and the downs, the smiles and the tears.

    None of this would have been possible without you.

    All the love.

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