What We Learned In 2018

2018! It’s gone!

We typically don’t get too hyped about New Years resolutions, but now is as good a time as any to reflect on the past 12 months. A lot has happened. We questioned and then decided to continue pursuing photography, we went through some crazy hormonal-therapy related depression, we moved into our friends’ house, Joe quit his full-time job, we decided to build this website, our worldview was shattered, we left everyone we knew and moved to New York. 

photos by Sara Byrne + Phil Chester

This has been a really significant year for us, both personally and professionally, and we wanted to wrangle our thoughts into a single, concise post that might serve as a good recap of the year for us and hopefully a source of encouragement for you!


In 2018 we learned that…

  • “Perfectionism” is often a fear-based crutch that I hide behind when I’m too scared to share my work. Doing something right now is often better than delaying to doing something perfectly.
  • Everything good takes so much longer than you think. We’ve constantly been frustrated that things aren’t happening fast enough. But we’ve learned patience.
  • Creative people figure stuff out on their own. Sometimes I need to stop searching for the answer and just try something.
  • If I have a negative emotion that doesn’t make me a bad person. I’m not ill-adjusted to life. I’m human.
  • The people who are “more successful”/”further along” than me are just people too, with many of the same fears, desires, problems, and thoughts as I have.
  • Growing up I always thought “believing in yourself” was the corniest sentiment. Now I realize how important it is.
  • It’s OK to feel. I have a right to my feelings. They are not bad or wrong. They do not make me less worthy, less spiritual, weaker, or less rational. Feelings make me feel alive; they help me make good decisions; and they help me understand other people.
  • Nudity isn’t a big deal.
  • Cold-emailing clients to get paid work is much less effective than putting all my efforts into just producing art that I love.
  • There isn’t some hidden secret to success. Just persevere.
  • Nobody is going to believe in me if I don’t believe in myself. 
  • My mindset is possibly the most important key to enjoying my life. And it takes regular, consistent effort to maintain a good one. Read good books, listen to good podcasts, have conversations with good people – the time and effort is worth it 100x over.
  • My perspective on life, politics, art, religion, morals, everything, is far narrower than I’d like to believe.
  • I can only control 2 things in life: my thoughts, and my actions. I am at my best when I let go of everything else.

We wish you all the happiness and success in 2019!


Katie + Joe