As the contemplations of Summer grow and the memories of Winter fade, it’s a comforting thought that nature is making plans for a new show to surprise and entertain us. If you’re one of the lucky ones who has a wonderfully kept garden, with neatly trimmed beds, perfectly leveled lawns and an abundance of flowers laying dormant, ready to blume; then you already have your own personal nature show waiting in the wings. For the less fortunate, or in my case, not so enthusiastic gardener, our floral fireworks and leafy explosions may be more like an underfunded B movie; dull, moody, with the odd quirky cult status of that weird plant which seems to spring up each year in the dark corner next to the fence.
Sometimes it’s just fun to get back to basics and keep it simple. So after a brief, chilling trip to the local supermarket; I returned home with my bounty of food. I don’t think this was how hunter, gatherers worked way back then, in fact I’m sure my ancestors would be greatly disappointed in my lack of animal tracking skills or my ability to pluck fruit from nearby bushes and trees. Those days are gone, they’re so retro. That said, those days were also a lot cheaper, free actually; but today I guess I’m paying for someone else’s hunter, gathering skills and to have it presented to me in nice, neat packaging.
Although the following saying, ‘Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’, was no doubt around for many years before the author Margaret Wolfe Hungerford included it in her book ‘Molly Bawn’ (1878), it still stands as a widely used idiom to this day. Beauty can be found in many scenarios, even in the worst environments; but it’s a subjective beauty and not one that all will agree with or even see. I think one of the skills of a photographer is to bring out that beauty and hopefully highlight it in a positive or at least palatable way, so others can realise or maybe understand what they’re seeing.
This morning was one of those, ‘Maybe, maybe not?’ moments. You know when you wake up, and your first urge is to get out there and greet the world, say ‘hi’ and do something with your day. Then you look out of the window, only to be met with a grey, cloudy looking vista. That initial urge starts to fade, maybe the world can wait to be greeted another day? I’ve had many of those moments, but sometimes you just have to push on through and believe that the day will still work out; after all, what can a bit of cloud do to ruin your creative desires?
As a photographer in the making, you often find that you reach a point where you wonder, ‘is it all worth it?’. This story has been told many times over by ‘creatives’ from all walks of life and genres , but photography is one that I’ve heard this uttered in so often. You compare yourself to your peers, you compare your creativity and knowledge to hundreds, if not thousands of like-minded individuals on social media, Flickr, Facebook and Instagram to name but a few. You wish you lived in a place that has stunning scenery, beautiful mountain ranges, sweeping coastal views etc …
While I like to think I’m an open book when it comes to photography genres, I have to admit that I’m far more comfortable taking certain shots than others. Not wholly based on my skills, but more a case of me being able to connect with the subject, I’m sure later on in this post I’ll regret wording it that way, but that’s how I feel about it right now.