Been reading Ming Thein’s blog over the years. He has had a pretty rough year one way and another, and lamented the need to consider life beyond his photographic endevours.
His New Year’s Resolutions always make for challenging thoughts.
This one among other things makes a bold statement, “Few pros last longer than ( 5 years), and almost all the ones I’d met that had were really quite jaded and uncreative by that point – it was just a job” Now I’m not going to take on his observation, and it’s important it is read in context.
But it got me to wondering.
We all go through creative periods when the juices seem to dry up and its hard to come up with a new challenge or vision.
I’m also reading some David DuChemin books at the moment, and as he went through a huge accident, was in hospital for quite a number of months in intense pain with the possibility of never walking again, I think there is little cross connection with Ming’s insights.
David says, “If you don’t love photography for the sheer act of trying to express yourself and will only find joy in it when youre a finally there, yours will be a most disappointing journey. Not only will you never get there, but you’ll miss how beautiful and exhilarating the journey itself is.
If you love the journey so much that you wish it had no ultimate destination, you are in luck. It doesn’t have to.”
I had my first published picture when I was 14. The following two years I did several photo essay jobs. One I actually got paid to travel. And somewhere blind fate stepped in, and blinded, I took another direction in my life. And I reckon, looking back at everyone I know well, the same thing could be said to a degree or another.
But the one thing that never changed I believe was the excitement of “pressing the button to make the moment”. Sometimes just looking through the viewfinder in an inquistive way is enough.
And there we were in Ballaratt. Hot overcast day, with a Great Crested Grebe that seemed happy to bob and paddle around close to us. Should have been a 10 second shot. Aim, focus, set exposure. Wait. Bird turns. Click. Now what’s next?
As the bird moved back and forth, a whole new world of images began to open up. Shadows, reflections, shapes, settings, all seemed to roll by in an endless view.
So we sat. I posted quite a selection from that half hour or so, yesterday. But some of them I had already visualised beyond a simple record. It’s that kind of journey.
Feeling jaded. Not a bit. Feeling it was a job. No. It’s a journey. A bit like the movie, “The Never Ending Story Part II” —See, I’m amused by a never-ending story that had to have a sequel 🙂
David D again. “Vision is everything you think, feel, and bring to the photograph. You don’t bring it. It brings you. It’s your view of the world.”
A quick trip into Nik Silver Effects Pro, find a suitable blend of my favourite cool filter, Cyanotype, (Used to make them in real photochemistry in another life).
And there it is.
A beautiful moment in a fantastic journey. I’m not going to reach the destination anytime soon.
Keep takin’ pictures. We do.
More on a life in monochrome and my affair with Silver Effects Pro next week.