Tag Archives: passion

Never Give Up

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“Never ever give up; be strong, very strong” – Margaret Harvard

My mother Margaret shared a load of wisdom with me over the years and what she said above was stated more fiercely in her last few months of living.

“Mom, all your effort with me over the years is still paying off; I made it into the Saturday newspaper with a few photos Lol ūüôā ;). I love you lots, thank you” ~ Andy

Dedication 2

If you are taking the time to read this post then please refresh yourself with Dedication 1 before continuing.

So as you would have now seen and read, HDR photography is not that easy and I have come a long way since attempt 1 in November 2012.

My post on 26 November 2012 stated: “One day I will look at my first two ‚ÄúHDR‚ÄĚ photos and have a good¬†chuckle!”. I am chuckling now (one year and two months later) and have done so in the past few months.

I believe that I am at least halfway to nearly three-quarters of the way there; there being when I surpass some of the HDR hotshots in the world.

Robin Sharma¬†is partly to “blame”. He¬†came to Durban on 27 July 2013. I attended his seminar and on the following Monday started waking up at 5 AM. Nothing really happened to start with. After a few weeks I started concentrating even more on my photography.

To continue with this story I have inserted an excerpt of an email I sent Robin¬†Sharma: “The benefits of waking at 5 aren’t known until you actually wake at 5. Even then it still doesn’t click into place until you have a 5 o’ clock mission (something worthwhile to do).
I tried the reading thing and exercise. The latter worked well for me but not the former. Instead, I tried photography.
In summer in South Africa you have to get up at 3 AM if you want to travel and be setup for photos at 1st light.
My 5 o’clocks have now become 3 o’clocks on weekends if the weather plays game. Alternatively I turn on the computer and process photos. Both stimulate my creative juices and there’s a big bonus at the end if what I produce looks really cool.”
I went on to tell Robin that my photography has now met some measure of success, although I didn’t know at the time that three of my photos would soon place well in the¬†VSS CREATIVE virtual camera club¬†competition (more info here).
It’s been revealed that the TOP 10 of every month in every section will soon be published in the biggest “SA Creative Photography Book”.
I was taken aback when the photo below took 2nd place in November 2013.
VSS Top 10 Pictorial_2nd place

Truthfully, I was gobsmacked when the photos below ripped 1st and 2nd place in the same category and month.

Hein Waschefort of VSS, and director of the Photographic Society of South Africa, commented that he believed that it was the first time that someone had taken the top two spots in the same category and month.

Passion

The gobsmacked was 99.9% from being judged “ahead” of what I saw to be some super-hot works of art published by other photographers.

Blessing

The “hilarious” side:

Two of the photos were taken with my “old” Canon 550D camera that is now worth about ZAR 6,000.00 new. Only one photo was taken with my new Canon 6D which recently set me back ZAR 28,000.00.

As I said in Dedication 1: Have a lovely week at work and if the going gets a little tough remember:¬†‚ÄúCourage doesn‚Äôt always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I‚Äôll try again tomorrow‚ÄĚ ~¬†Mary Anne Radmacher

VSS Top 10 Pictorial_2nd place - all

It was really great to meet you Robin Sharma

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I identified this as a must-attend Durban event beforehand: “The Leader¬†Who Had No Title”¬†if one wanted to get overloaded with passion.

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I was right, it was totally awesome!

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Being seated inside the Olive Convention Centre, North Beach, Durban South Africa, shortly before the event started, I was smiling like a Cheshire Cat.

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It was a certainty that that Robin Sharma would soon appear live on stage to share some of his magic.

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The vibe was electrifying. It was wonderful to be amongst so many like-minded people in one big room.

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The event was worth every single cent. A very valuable investment in #1, which would later benefit #2, #3…

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We laughed our heads off, learnt a helluva lot, met each other, said “silly” things (not actually) to attendees alongside us and even gave one another short shoulder massages! Only at Robin’s event I suppose.

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The 3 hours of Robin Sharma energy ended with him and I shaking hands, my shaky voice saying “Hi Robin, my name is Andrew. Thank you for coming to Durban” and getting his autograph on my notebook.

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After that I treated myself to lunch on the beach overlooking a calm and beautiful Indian ocean. What an amazing day!

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Take my advice and connect with Robin on his website or Facebook for some great motivation and ideas.

Listen to him right now (Complete audio-book of Robin’s #1 bestseller The Greatness Guide)¬†right here if you want to give your life a golden edge.

As Robin said, if you want to achieve what only 5% of the people in the world have, then you need to do what only 5% of the people in the world do!

Inspired by Facebook

I watched a movie last night (The Social Network) and was hugely inspired.

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Wikipedia¬†reports: “The Social Network is a 2010 American drama film directed by David Fincher and written by Aaron Sorkin. Adapted from Ben Mezrich’s 2009 book The Accidental Billionaires, the film portrays the founding of social networking website Facebook and the resulting lawsuits.”

Before the movie ended, I was already on the internet checking for more information. It got my mind working overtime. I was in awe.

It was amazing for me to witness a young college student, with or without help, with foul play or not, take the world by storm (PS – I am not sanctioning foul play, if any).

This movie will surely suit those of you who already own a business or others who are thinking of starting one. Even employees will benefit.

It will hopefully show you that you can also think BIG and do GREAT THINGS!

Business Insider gives some information here and the movie review is here.

But forget all of that, trust me ‚Äď just hire and watch the movie.

For a bit of humour, view The Social Network Poster Parody Parade.

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Still on motivation, but closer to home. Here is another reminder for those in South Africa.

There is still time to be at this must-attend Durban event “The Leader¬†Who Had No Title”¬†if you want to get overloaded with passion. One week to go!

Book on Computicket or look here for a possibly better deal (but be quick).

If you can’t make it to the event, then connect with Robin Sharma on his¬†website¬†or¬†via Facebook¬†for some great motivation and ideas.

No time to read his top-class books then listen to some good advice, the Complete audio-book¬†of Robin’s #1 bestseller The Greatness Guide,¬†right here¬†if you want to give yourself a winning edge!

Robin Sharma

I’m going to have coffee with Robin Sharma

This is a must-attend Durban event “The Leader¬†Who Had No Title”¬†if you want to get overloaded with passion.

UntitledIf you can’t make it for coffee or don’t get an invite, then connect with Robin on his website¬†or Facebook¬†for some great motivation and ideas.

No time to read?

Listen to some good advice (Complete audio-book of Robin’s #1 bestseller The Greatness Guide)¬†right here if you want to give your life a golden edge!

Cold Turkey (Everybody’s Free – To Wear Sunscreen)

It was all engines go and roaring for the UK and then Turkey in my last post. It was set in stone Рtickets & accommodation were all booked. I explained in great detail to friends and colleagues how Timol and I would walk the markets and alleyways of Istanbul, and then sit down to rest with a Turkish coffee and hookah. Really now, what could go wrong?

We landed in the UK and had two days at New Barns farm outside Birmingham and exploring London CBD before I received the first SMS / text.

I am sure all of you know some of the Baz Luhrmann lyrics to “Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen)”. The full lyrics appear at the end of this post, but for here & now I specifically highlight¬†“Get to know your parents. You never know when they’ll be gone for good”. This was¬†said for good reason.

The SMS suggested I return home immediately as my Mother was critically ill.

Within 5 hours of getting that message (only 48 hours after landing in the UK), Timol and I were boarding an Emirates flight to head back home. Turkey was out the door.

I didn’t know if Mother would make through the next 22 hours whilst we hurried back home. I sent messages asking that she just hold on a little while longer: that last smile, warm hand, touch, goodbye, word, bit of advice, smell seemed all so very important at that point but¬†definitely¬†not when I¬†hurriedly¬†left Mother about 3 days before, to look after things while I was away.

Long story short. I have been home 9 days, never saw Turkey but did see Mother tonight at the hospital. We watched a little television, shared some memories and how our days went today, got some fresh air outside, sampled the view over Durban CBD, held hands and made arrangements to see each other tomorrow.

Things are not at all well with Mother and the chances of¬†improvement¬†are ultra-slim to nil, but we have¬†shared 9 glorious days that perhaps should not have been ours – I have told Mother that this is indeed our “bonus” time; like in pinball: we are scoring big and I for one love it!

Yes, our days together are surely numbered but I think that they have always been; from the moment I entered this world from her womb. It only now that we appreciate this a little or lot more.

A little advice from my Mother today “savour, enjoy and appreciate that simple cup of tea or plain apple, because you don’t know what it’s like (how terrible and torturing) when you can’t have them any longer”. Mother is no longer able to eat in the conventional manner and in all¬†likelihood¬†will not do so again in this lifetime.

I cannot even begin to describe Mother and the enormity of her heart, the unconditional love, care for all, warmth, courage of a Lion (she is a Leo) and many other talents.

Perhaps the pictures below of Mother and her son (me) taken about 40 years ago will provoke some thoughts.

It’s nearly bedtime for me so let me leave you with the promised lyrics:

‚ÄúLadies and gentlemen of the class of ’99:

Wear sunscreen.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they’ve faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you’ll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine.

Don’t worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blind sides you at 4 p.m. on some idle Tuesday.

Do one thing every day that scares you.

Sing.

Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts. Don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours.

Floss.

Don’t waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind. The race is long and, in the end, it’s only with yourself.

Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.

Stretch.

Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don’t.

Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees. You’ll miss them when they’re gone.

Maybe you’ll marry, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll have children, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll divorce at 40, maybe you’ll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else’s.

Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don’t be afraid of it or of what other people think of it. It’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.

Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.

Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.

Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents. You never know when they’ll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They’re your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.

Travel.

Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you’ll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.

Respect your elders.

Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you’ll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.

Don’t mess too much with your hair or by the time you’re 40 it will look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen‚ÄĚ