Saturday, 2 February 2013

creative brick wall

It has finally happened.

Truthfully, it happened sometime last summer, but it has taken me until now to acknowledge it.

I have hit a creative brick wall. Full tilt. Hard.

Time was, I would not leave the house without a camera with me. I would always find something interesting to see in the everyday. I would "see" things that others would question, would not "get". And I was ok with this (still am) but the problem is that I have, for whatever reason, stopped seeing things.

Or, to be more accurate, I have stopped caring about seeing things, or at least have stopped caring about recording what I am seeing and displaying it in a meaningful way. Make sense?

I am struggling with why I bother to take photographs. Who am I taking the pictures for? Me? My friends? My family? The public at large? I don't know.

I have tried the "social thing" on flickr and other sites and came to the conclusion that I just don't like social networking enough to make my pictures popular. Truthfully, I just don't care enough about people pleasing to bother with a lot of meaningless tripe to garner attention.

I feel as if I have taken every picture around where I live that I can take. It is funny. When I am out walking or riding about, I see something and think, "That would make a nice picture. Wait. I have that exact picture in this exact light at home on my hard drive. I took it last May. Or whenever." And then I don't take the picture.

Picture taking has been for me a social thing as well. I love taking pictures with people. However, the overwhelming majority of my friends who are interested in photography are simply, and legitimately, too busy with life to have time to use their cameras. They have disengaged from the hobby, at least to some extent. And when we do manage to get together, I often won't take any pictures worth looking at if I even take any pictures at all. I always have a great time though, so I doubt that this is the cause of my picture taking blahs. And truly, it is the people in such circumstances not the photography which matter anyway.

I am honest enough with myself to know that I am a bit (ok, more than a bit) of a gear head. My two hobbies, cycling and photography, both rotate around gear to some extent and I genuinely enjoy working with fine gear. This is not a beg for new gear since my cameras are not holding me back either technically or creatively in any way. They will only be an impediment to creativity when they stop working.

What is missing, I think, is purpose. Why bother has sunk in rather deeply.

I have to find that groove again. That track. That drive to take what I see around me and show it to the world and say, "See? This is what I saw today!" I need to get excited about the creative process and about breathing life and light into the mundane.


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