When I first dreamt of being a professional photograher, I thought of Robert Capa on the beaches of Normandy. I saw Steve McCurry on assignment for National Geographic capturing the exotic and rich culture of India. And I had visions of Andy Rouse perched in an Arctic wilderness creating stunning images of polar bears in the dawn light.
What I did not envision was that seven years later, I would indeed be living the dream of being a 'professional photographer'. And that said dream would involve ironing Hello Kitty products.
Firstly, it's only early days.
Secondly, to be a professional photographer you have to be a professional everything-else; ironer, accountant, decorater, marketer, administrator, researcher and much, much more. It is SO much more than just taking pictures.
Thirdly, there are plenty of jobs within specific fields that aren't as glamorous as they may seem. For example, a job in football doesn't necessary mean being Robin van Persie or the Editor of FourFourTwo - it could mean being behind the bar at Anfield or working on the line in the Arsenal merchandise warehouse. Being an actor doesn't mean being Brad Pitt (unless, of course, you are Brad Pitt). Likewise, being a photographer doesn't mean being Ansel Adams.
Finally, it's worth mentioning that I didn't actually mind ironing Hello Kitty products. I accept it's all part of the 'bigger picture' (pun intended). It's good to see it in perspective and treat it all as a bit of fun. There are far, far worse jobs out there anyway.