The Myth of Overnight Success

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset

I’ve never been (and will likely never be) an overnight anything. For the most part, I prefer the winding path because it affords time for creativity and contemplation, which are two of my favorite things (see Action over Analysis post for possible side effects). This is not to say that I’m content to be stagnant – far from it! My path is bursting with grand ambitions, hard work, and high hopes. So it should come as no surprise, that even from this happily meandering route, I am not immune to a twinge of envy when I read what seem to be overnight business success stories. Who wouldn’t? The meandering path can be a tough way to pay the bills, and a chubby bank account sure would make life easier…but I need to remind myself that those stories are few and far between – that’s what makes them remarkable and not mundane. If all it took to attract legions of followers and through-the-roof sales was putting up a website and signing up for Instagram, there would be nothing noteworthy about it and we’d all be millionaires, and easy street would be packed elbow to elbow, standing room only.

what a shame it would be to dim your own light because someone else’s is shining brightly.

Some humans are better at it than others (what ever that “it” may be), but what a shame it would be to dim your own light because someone else’s is shining brightly. The logical side of my brain understands these things, but sometimes logic is undermined by fluttering doubts and misconceived notions about how the path sounds like it’s a whole lot easier for this or that person (usually spurred on by an article about someone I don’t even remotely know).  I have to remind myself that there is no such thing as effortless success, and there’s certainly nothing effortless about sustaining success. Everything looks easier once it’s done – a finished product all shined up and neatly presented with a linen twine bow. We don’t see the late nights, the too much coffee jitters, the hair-pulling head-scratching problem solving messiness that comes with the execution of all great things.

So, if you have these green-eyed moments too, and are starting a blog, or have had one for years but have only attracted a handful of readers, or have an Etsy shop, or small product line that is paying for your supplies, but is far from paying the rent, take heart. Try not to get discouraged. Business, and life in general for that matter, is not easy for anyone. For every headline about seemingly effortless rapid growth, there is a mountain of preparation and sweat behind it. Remember that there’s always more room at the top – so what if it takes you longer to climb the mountain? Just keep plugging away, one foot in front of the other on your journey and your chances of success will increase astronomically, and every so often, take advantage of the slower pace, pause mid-hustle, and take in the view.

Referenced

Action over Analysis

This is part of our series documenting our journey with Foto Rx. It may seem like we are moving at 90 mph, with a whirlwind of product releases, classes, collaborations, – and we are right now, but we have been chipping away at this venture for 3+ years and hope to keep working on it for many more!

Author / Miss Michelle P.

Miss Michelle P. is a photographer, and the co-creator of Foto Rx Premium Photoshop Actions. She lives in the Pacific Northwest. Her muse is light.

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How to install Photoshop brushes

how to install photoshop brushes

The other day a friend of the blog and a self professed newbie to Photoshop had downloaded our aqua skies action and had a bit of trouble loading, we directed her to our videos we have which we hope are easy peasy. That Friday we gave away free flourish Photoshop brushes and she emailed an S.O.S. saying they weren’t working (we did a little troubleshooting and found out she was trying to use the steps for installing Photoshop actions for her Photoshop brushes). Michelle and I both know that Photoshop can seem like an incredibly daunting + intimidating program, but I promise you that it doesn’t have to be!

My unsolicited advice? Don’t try to learn everything in Photoshop all at once, you don’t need to know how to do everything if you are a newbie to Photoshop (or even an expert), you just need to learn what tools and tasks you need to complete your given project. Even though I am a .PsD (that’s basically like having a Ph.D in Photoshop) there are many tools I don’t know how to use, don’t use or don’t care to ever use (for me it’s some of the awful filters, the 3D capabilities and web design tools like slicing. What you don’t know about slicing? Exactly).

I thought I would tackle installing Photoshop brushes today with some of the easier tutorials. We use Photoshop brushes a lot around here and we have made many to download for free, so I hope this helps!

//How to install Photoshop brushes//

This is an older post, but I think it’s still a very simple + easy explanation.

A little more advanced but still easy to understand.

P.S. Michelle and I will be teaching a ‘Photoshop for Lettering Artist’ class in the very near future, if you want to learn the step-by-step on how to get your lettering from paper to pixel sign-up to be notified of class launch here!

P.P.S. I used brushes on this image I edited by Nicolai Bernsten. When you really have a handle on Photoshop brushes they will help you create magic within your images. I also wanted a good excuse to practice developing our B+W Photoshop actions, it’s going to be a lot of experimentation until we are ready for market, wish us luck!

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.

Around here…

around here matte and glow actions via besotted blog

It seems each week has it’s own set of crazy obstacles that leave me breathless, this week proved to be no different. Michelle and I are in full-on prep mode to get ready for our ‘Photoshop for Lettering Artists’ class launch (the launch date has been pushed back to June). The more I think about it the more nervous I get and the more I wonder why we decided it was a such a good idea in the first place. I know it’s a good idea (because I get about a 100 emails on this subject a day), but I wish my clone (if I had one) would do the class for me, being on camera is terrifying!

Our friend Sanae launched her first children’s book- Little Kunoichi last Sunday, and she is prepping for book number 2 now which is a sewing/memoir hybrid (she is a creative Jedi). We will be interviewing Sanae extensively soon because I think you will be happily surprised to find out how this blogger got her book deals!

Ever since I read about The Cure beauty product I can’t get it out of my head, I must try this stat! If you have already, please let me know what you thought, from the Amazon reviews this product is a miracle worker!

Because I can’t seem to focus on just one thing (even though I truly do try), I have been tinkering with our future Photoshop action sets (and a little Lightroom play as well). We know we want to do a B+W set, and one to do with light (hmm? cryptic enough), but we have also been toying with the idea of a mini matte set, the look is so popular right now and we think it’s subtle enough that you won’t look back on your edits a few years from now and cringe (that’s how I feel about some of my early photo editing, yikes!) Hint, this photo was originally destined for the trash bin, it was too cool, too dark and altogether trash worthy but with a little light therapy and matte Foto Rx actions I think it really recreates the feel of early morning summer light. Do you like the matte look? Or do you think you would be more interested in achieving beautiful light in your images?

Have a favorite book and love a good font? Don’t forget to enter to win Laura Worthington’s hefty new font collection here.

P.S. Want that beautiful glowy light today?  Michelle has the most awesome (and easy) tutorial here.

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.

AROUND HERE….

around here besotted blog end april 2015

When we were making post suggestions for the week, I mentioned to Michelle that we hadn’t done an ‘around here’ post in forever so here it is…

This week I had an epic panic when I thought our site was down, I 911’d Lindsay our coder and she checked that everything was just fine–phew! She gave me this link so I can check it in the future.

My friend Whitney is learning French the easy way, she’s using this company and I think I might start too!

I have a not so secret obsession with The Walking Dead (yes, zombies!) I finally got Michelle to watch and I feel such victory. To me the story is about never giving up and I love that theme. My husband and I just finished the last season and now I am a bit bereft of what to binge watch now, any suggestions?

Michelle and I are getting ready for our launch of our newest action set for lettering artists, it should be finished and ready to launch on May 5th, it’s time for a happy dance. Be the first to know when it’s in the shop!

I stumbled across what seems to be a pretty vibrant writing community with workshops, interviews with published authors and general writing encouragement (I want to take their grammar refresher course).

Maybelle suggested the Being Boss podcast.  I haven’t listened yet, but I am sure it’s a good one.

With high hopes I tried this new hydro-boost gel-cream for extra dry skin, spoiler it didn’t work for me, but it turned out to be a great primer!

If you haven’t already, you need to check out the comments from yesterday’s question- Is there a book you would recommend that has inspired you to go out and do/make something? I am chomping at the bit to explore every one of the suggestions!

Thank you for your visits and encouragement this week, it’s always so appreciated!

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.

photo by tristan b.

How to turn blue skies aqua

how to turn blue skies aqua via besotted blog

Michelle and I are dedicated to the idea of being as transparent as possible on the blog about our processes, we love sharing what we learned and to share both our failures and successes in the hopes that it gives you a shortcut to the latter. We are learning as we go along on our new venture and thought we would address the mailing list for anyone that has one now or is considering one for their business. We created ours with the idea of happy + useful mail in mind, we didn’t want spam email or used car salesman-esque emails urging you to buy, buy, buy, we wanted our list recipients to get an email from us and be excited, it’s something on the forefront of our minds when we send out our free Photoshop action for the month. Yes, we decided to create and giveaway a free premium action each month with no strings attached. Of course this is all new to us, we have only been doing this for a couple months but so far we feel it’s been a very good way to build not only a rapport with our potential clients but thank our existing ones that are on our list. When I do Besotted Brand emails I never send out an email with a sale unless it’s a good one and by good I mean 50% or more off. I know how annoyed I get with constant emails from brands that I often just immediately delete or unsubscribe. What if a brand actually has something that was worthwhile (and free shipping qualifies especially if you have overseas customers) well then, that’s different, right? When I do my sales it’s worth more to me in the time period I get sales then spamming my customers daily or weekly with meager percentages off. Time is money, always try to reach out to your customers in a way that would make you excited and move you if you were the one on the receiving end of the email. Do the other ways work, the pummel the email subscriber until they either submit or unsubscribe? I think it is a model that can work, but it is truly awful. I am no mailing list expert but I do know what I like. Also, in full confession here I do subscribe to some lists because I love to see what they’ll come up with next design/photography wise even though I am not a consumer (like Bhldn and Terrain).

So back to the our freebie for May! Both Michelle and I have been daydreaming about sun drenched locales lately (that will happen coming out of a Seattle winter). This image was taken in Los Angeles when I lived there and when I pulled it up the other night I felt like it didn’t convey the feeling of when I shot it, there was a vibrance and ‘joie de vivre’ missing that I wanted to convey, where was the magic of that moment? It needed a little technicolor and therein began the creation of this Photoshop action ‘aqua skies’ where you can paint on the blue in your image and transform it to a beautiful aqua in a swift click. We made it for skies, but it would work beautifully on bodies of water, eyes (use a subtle hand), clothes, etc. You’ll need to sign-up for the mailing list here to get it for May, but don’t worry if you want to unsubscribe immediately after that’s your prerogative (of course we would miss you dearly).

So tell us, do you have a mailing list now?  Do you have any tips + tricks that work for you that you are willing to share? If you have signed up for mailing lists what keeps you subscribed?

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.

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