How To Help Others Follow Their Dreams By Living Out Your Own

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Is it possible to help others follow their dreams by living out your own?  After 2 years of dreaming with 8 Women Dream, I can say without hesitation – yes.

And here is my proof.

A few months ago, we ran a poll here on 8 Women Dream to help me determine where to go on my top photographer dream vacation.  Out of 8 destination choices the winning vote by a landslide was a trip to Anchorage, Alaska.

But I ended up choosing (last place with no votes) Louisville, Kentucky instead.


While I was literally on-line planning my trip to Alaska, I got a call from my good friend who is starting a new business – someone who I’ve helped over the past year with some business advice, resources, friendship and alot of moral support.

Her dream is to save kids lives with her invention that keeps the little ones safe in their car seats.

She was planning a big trip to a huge industry trade show and asked me if I’d go along to help her, as she did not want go alone. It was her first trade show, her first product – her first everything.

As the universe would have it — like some funny joke – her trade show was during the same week in September as my potential dream photography trip to Anchorage.

But without a second thought, I stopped building the Alaska itinerary and Googled “What to see in Kentucky.”

What I saw on various websites was amazing.  I would have no problems at all finding photo ops of all kinds in Louisville.  I said yes, and I couldn’t wait to go.

But my hopes of spending some free time shooting the lush countryside, horse farms, old churches and city-scapes were quickly re-set, as I realized on day one of the trade show that it would be a non stop, indoor-till-dark commitment to her and her business the entire time we were there.

But I brought my camera bag along each day anyway – hoping to create some photo opportunities.

It took some creative rethinking, but here’s what I did to live my dream:

Instead of photographing Louisville’s cityscapes and historical areas, I walked the trade show floor and visited with other small businesses owners, taking photos of them in their booth spaces.  I collected their business cards and many of them asked to buy my images for their own marketing and promotions materials.

The tour of the Louisville Slugger Baseball Bat manufacturing plant didn’t happen, but I was inspired by meeting a mompreneur from California who started a small business in her garage, making wooden toyboxes and children’s bedroom furniture.  I learned that she has some great connections in the film industry, so I’m keeping her business card close by, with the hope of getting some of my images sold for print advertising.

I didn’t dine at a lot of local eateries, but was able to sample all natural baby foods, fruit juices and learned all I ever wanted to know about eco-friendly laundry detergent.  As a mom and consumer, I now have a very different and valuable perspective of the ‘green product industry’ just by meeting and befriending the booth-mates behind us who were experienced business owners and all around nice people.

And on our flight home, I sat in the window seat – something I rarely do – and had my camera out, shooting some amazing arial views on our trek west.  I have started decorating my own home with my work (another rare photographer action) and I find that I like textures and interesting patterns, and these will fit in well.  If I hadn’t taken that flight, my walls may still be bare.

Dreamers, it is possible to live your own dreams while helping others go after theirs.  You just have to look for – and possibly create – the opportunities to make it happen.

What ideas do you have to do that?

It can be the trap of the photographer to think that his best photographs were the ones that he initially set out to get.   – Anonymous

Until next photo,


  • Lisa Powell, Author & Serial Traveler

    Remy – wow – you are such a beautiful and generous soul!!! Bless you for being such an amazing friend, and turning it into a great opportunity for yourself in the process (loved your idea of snapping people in the booths and asking to sell them images for marketing/promotion – genius!). I hope those connections in the film industry materialize for you soon and this trip results in some lucrative sales – Lord knows you deserve it! You are awesome :)


    p.s. loved this quote: It can be the trap of the photographer to think that his best photographs were the ones that he initially set out to get. – Anonymous

    • Thanks Lisa! It feels great to know wonderful souls like you are in my corner! xo Rem

  • Act as if what you do makes a difference.

    • Remy Gervais, Top Photographer

      Lars – you will always make a difference.

  • Ramona Sakiestewa

    I have seen that in any great undertaking it is not enough for a man to depend simply upon himself. ~ Isna-la-wica Teton Sioux

    • Remy Gervais, Top Photographer

      Ramona – exactly. xo Rem

  • I have never been to Kentucky. I think I would have wanted to check out the horse scene while there.

    Tradeshows are mind-boggling exhausting. We used to do one a year when I worked at NAMC and when it was all over I would spend the following weekend sleeping.

    Congratulations on your product launch!


    • Remy G

      well the hotel we stayed at had a very cool display of all of the derby winners with the jockey’s hand prints in concrete – like they do in Hollywood. it was cool. But that is as close as I got. Next time! ps I also slept thru a 75 mph “tornado” and major storm that produced 31 inches of rain in the state in 12 hours. I can check that off the list. We got home after 6 days, a little shell shocked and overwhelmed, but I think we are caught up on the sleep now…Thanks for the congrats! xo Rem

  • Remy,

    This is just super!!!

    Love the ariel photo because I love natural beauty. And just think how short a time ago in the world’s history it was that we had A.) The invention of photographic image capturing or B.) The invention of flight. WOW!

    Also, in response to the final question you posed, I find that saying “YES!” is a good way to get to my dreams as well as, (and/or while I) find myself involved with others’.

    Love, Shellie

    • Remy G

      Thanks Shellie – and saying yes to the things that feel right has been my go to phrase lately…trusting my instincts alot – and just going for it. I cant wait to see your dreams unfold. :) Rem

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  • Heather

    Congrats on the trip! I love adventures, and they usually show up when you aren’t planning for them.

    I think it’s natural to help people along the way to your dream. It seems to happen all the time with me… not really trying or thinking about it. I’m getting in shape, and people around me join in the fun. I’m researching an online venture, and all of a sudden the contacts start connecting.

    Thanks for the story – sounds like it was fun! – H

    • Remy G

      Thanks Heather! Givers gain is a way to look at it…and you are on your way lady! xo Rem