Saturday, 14 May 2011

No Such Thing As Can't

Back in 2009 I worked for six months on a cruise ship that went back and forth through Alaska and then down to the Carribbean. It was both the hardest and best job I've ever had but I am now glad it's in the past! This is mainly because it was horrible when you made friends on the ship only for them to leave and go home and become replaced with someone else. Even worse was the thought of not knowing if you'd ever see these people ever again. Most of the friends I made aboard the Island Princess live in completely different countries and it's really sad knowing we'll never all be together in the same room ever again.

I was going through my photos the other day to make sure I had things organised and backed up and found one of my friend Hannes on what was a pretty poignant day for me. He had become such a close friend in the three months I had known him on the ship and his contract along with another photographer Tim, was coming to an end. I remember us all saying that we couldn't complete out contracts without them, it wouldn't be the same, we'd be counting the days until we left.... there was even a tear-jearking video made for their send off! (which I'd like to have linked to also, but it's a bit rude in places!)

With some rare time off in Ketchikan Alaska, Hannes and I headed out for a walk and he told me there was something he'd like to show me that he'd seen whilst out on a run when he was in port another time. He proceeded to walk up the steepest hill I had ever seen in my life, I wish I'd taken a picture. It was a really picturesque place with wooden houses on stilts all the way up. I moaned though (of course!) that there was no way I could make it all the way up, it can't be possible to walk up there!

Then when we got there he showed me this saying inscribed into the wall at the top of the hill outside somebody's house. 'No Such Thing As Can't' and I just had to laugh. At the time it made me realise that of course I'd complete my contract with Princess Cruises and obviously I could walk up a hill. It's just a matter of keeping ahold of that positive attitude. 

Recently I've been beating myself up about things not happening as quickly or exactly as I'd like, comparing my work to others and feeling really demotivated by lack of success where others seem to be blossoming. When I'm having these real 'pity party' days I like to think of Hannes and his optimism and the way he sees the world

Today when I came across this photo it made me smile, because when I finally left the ship I was so worried about what I'd do for a job afterwards. The year following my disembark I tried to set up a photography business and really wasn't getting there so I resided to the fact that I couldn't do it well enough to make it my full time career. I got a job elsewhere and put the idea to the back of my mind. 

Now however I realise that there really is no such thing as can't and the work I put in back then has helped build my portfolio up to where I am now. Without even realising it I was working towards where I wanted to be. Where I am now is happily growing my new business, albeit slowly but I know that this time next year things will be even better.

I should mention that Hannes is an amazing fashion photographer and you should shimmy on over to here and see his work. Also the pictures of the two of us were taken by my friend Katie who is my double living in America. As soon as I can afford to I'm off to South Africa to see Hannes again and walk up some more hills.


  1. I am in love with this post! Thanks so much for sharing I think I will visit it again and again when I need a bit of positive thinking!You should blow this up frame it and hang it above your desk : )

  2. Great post, very inspiring I'm slowly building my photography business in London too so I really appreciated this. :)

  3. Thank you Steven and Katherine! I have it framed already, certainly picks me up when I think about it :D

  4. thats a lovely story Kerrie, I enjoyed reading it.
    Kirstie x
    Flo & Percy

  5. No such thing as can't! Love it. What a great reminder to keep you going. We all have those days and we all need a personal reminder like this to do the trick and keep our positive attitudes on track! I bet you are glad you carried on up that hill now :)