what i learned in 2017 - november - december

I want to clarify, because I might have expressed the wrong feelings about the college I am currently attending.

I have had a lot of opportunities at Simpson College, especially in November. 

For one, I intern for the PR/Marketing office and I was able to attend special events, create online content, and even run the official social media accounts for awhile.

I also signed up for an incredible opportunity to meet the Indiana Pacers General Manager, Chad Buchanan, a Simpson College alum.

Other opportunities arose, such as meeting and networking with professionals in the arts world.

I met Jeff Fleming, executive director of the Des Moines Art Center.

He talked about finding your way through life and how to “make it”.

“No one know what they’re doing,” he said about professionals in all fields.

Take the risk and make mistakes because that’s how you improve, and you might even end up better off because of those mistakes.

As finals rolled around again in December, I scheduled two photoshoots with models in Des Moines for the weekend.

I found these two models through a local Facebook group.

We decided to meet up in Des Moines and do a mini photo session.

For the first shoot, I was feeling very nervous and incompetent. And the shoot didn’t turn out how I pictured it would in my head.

The second shoot was much more of a success.


Nothing really changed from the day before at the first shoot to the second shoot except my attitude and confidence.

I had a much better vision for what I wanted to do and had more confidence in achieving it.

At the very least, I figured I had nothing to lose.

And in fact, I gained some things:

1.         I made two new contacts with people I didn’t know.

2.         I realized just how much confidence, or the lack thereof, can affect you.

3.         I now know I am capable of meeting a stranger and making conversation and that I am not actually as unbearably awkward as I think I am.



Dear Reader,

Take risks.

Do what scares you.

Don’t let your fears hold you back. Your fears are what will push you forward.

For awhile now, I have been saying I want to go skydiving. My mom has been freaking out about it and other family members have flat out told me not to do it.

But it is something I am very serious about doing, and soon.

It all stemmed from this video of Will Smith talking about fear.

As we start a new year, I  hope you will consider taking risks and doing the things that scare you most.

Here's to 2018!


Daryl Batt

Fearfully Fueled for 2018


That's a wrap on 2017! Thank you for reading about what i learned in 2017! On to 2018!

what i learned in 2017 - september - october

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it.” – Steve Jobs



I thought that volleyball was what my “great work” was going to be.

I still remember the first time I stepped onto a volleyball court for an organized team practice.

It was in seventh grade. School had just gotten out and I ran to the locker room to change. I was SO nervous and shy, but also excited.


I wasn’t very good.

I had never really played sports, so I wasn’t exactly a part of the “in crowd” and I didn’t really have a lot of friends who were also playing. (Years later, some of my best friends would come from volleyball teams.)

After that first practice, even though I sucked, I knew I belonged on the court.

Fast forward ten years: it’s September 2017 and I am playing college volleyball. But that spark… that excitement and passion isn’t there anymore.

I could feel myself starting to really lose interest early this season but it was hard to admit.

I have loved volleyball for so long, that it sort of became a habit and a part of who I am.

The abbreviated version is this: I thought volleyball was my passion until I realized I was waking up in the morning not only not excited for it, but wishing I wasn’t even playing.

For most of my childhood and all of my adult life, volleyball was my way to make friends, to workout, to travel, and to have something fun to do with the people I care about.

I still love watching the game, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not the thing that makes me want to get out of bed in the morning anymore.

During this past season, there were times I would call home crying, trying to get someone to convince me that I wanted to play and that I still loved it.

And sometimes that worked!... for awhile anyways.

I would get this spurt of motivation and excitement to be better and to make volleyball my focus.

But like the Steve Jobs said, my heart wasn’t in it and I knew it.

I was making excuses to convince myself to keep playing! I was settling for something I already knew how to do. There is a lot less risk in continuing something you are already doing to pursue something you haven’t ever done.

Volleyball season ended the last week of October and I was beyond relieved.

Not because of the coaches or my teammates or the time commitment playing collegiately required, but because I was no longer stuck doing something I wasn’t passionate for.

I want to thank everyone on the team for being such an incredible group to end my volleyball career with. I truly have had fun with this team and am so grateful for the friends that have come from it.



Dear Reader,

I want to share two videos that have really impacted me and that I think about often when it comes to dreams, passion, and love.

1. Steve Jobs gives the commencement speech at Stanford University about "How to Live Before You Die"

2. Jessica Stanley give the commencement speech at Forks High School. 😅

I hope that you always follow your dreams and pursue your true passions.

It’s okay not to know what you want to do right now.

It’s okay to love something and then change your mind!


Change your mind again and again!

Find what not only makes you want to get out of bed, but what makes you want to not go to sleep.

Daryl Batt

In the Pursuit of Dreams

Thanks for coming back for What I Learned in 2017- September/October! Check back tomorrow for my last post in this series! Catch up on January-August by scrolling down!

what i learned in 2017 - june - july - august

After two years of not living at home, my parents asked me to come home for the summer between my junior and senior year of college. 

I wasn’t really sure it was going to be a great idea. It is really hard to go back and live at home when you have lived on your own and have experienced “freedom”.

It’s not that I don’t love my family, but I also love being independent.*

Well... I decided to come home.

I live in Podunk-Middle of Nowhere-Small Town Colorado and I was about to spend three months back in H-town.

Yay. Three months.

As a young photographer, I have been trying to decide what area I want to focus in.

I love sports and fashion and portraits. So these were the things I wanted to work on that summer.

There aren’t exactly professional athletes or fashion models walking the streets of my town, so I had to figure out a way to make the best of what I had.

My mom (who once modeled in California) was willing to help me out with some fashion photos.

It was really cute, the whole thing. She let me style her outfits and do her hair and makeup. (I think she was having more fun than she let on.)

In July, a girl I knew from high school was having a fashion show. In my town! I know? Weird.

She had recently graduated from studying fashion in college and was debuting her new line. It is super trendy and modern and you can check it out here.

We didn’t really know each other that well, so I was hesitant to ask if I could come take photos.

She is not only an incredible designer, but she is incredibly kind person and she was more than happy to have me there!

I didn’t know how to take photos on a runway or editorial style photos and winging it didn’t really help me succeed.

The awesome thing about the internet is that you can learn about just about anything.

So I got on the world wide web and went to YouTube!

I started watching videos from current fashion photographers and rising photographers, as well as models and stylists.

I even booked a session with a social media coach and photographer to learn more about what this industry is like.

While I would have liked to been shooting photo sessions left and right, that wasn’t what was available, so I learned what I could and expanded my understanding of fashion and photography.

It’s still something I’m improving on and something I am very passionate about. I want to continue discovering fashion photography but I also want to dabble in sports photography. (Goal for 2018)

My summer wasn’t super adventurous. I didn’t travel, I didn’t go to the club, I didn’t go to awesome pool parties or skydive (another goal for 2018) but when I look back I can say that I did have a good summer.



Dear Reader,

Things are not always going to be grandeur and fabulous.

Things are definitely not always going to go the way you had them planned.

All you can do is make the best of what you have and where you are at.

Spend time with the people you care about and the animals you love.

Log out of your social media for a day and appreciate where you are and what you are doing.

Force yourself to look at whatever situation you are in with a positive light.

If you are failing your classes, ask yourself why? Did you ditch class a lot and never study? Do you suck at Math or whatever subject? Do you hate school?

So you failed? It happens. You learned what you aren’t good at or what you need to try harder for.

As cliché as it sounds, there is always a silver lining. Find it and take advantage of it!

Tiffany found the silver lining. So can you!


Daryl Batt

Just as Confused and Uncertain as You Are

Thanks for hanging in there and reading about "What I Learned in 2017"! Check back tomorrow for September and October! Scroll down for January-May!

*Disclaimer because my parents stsill do a lot for me and I don’t take that for granted.. I just meant being independent as living in my own apartment, not having to report my whereabouts to anyone 24/7, living on my own schedule… that sort of thing.