It’s the end of the year and I’ve been looking back. I’ve been looking back at a lot of things in my life, but what is pertinent to me here is this blog.
It seems reasonable to me, that if one takes seriously an interest in self expression, then ever so often it is worthwhile to stop and have a look at whether that expression is successful, and whether there is growth or not.
One of my issues in the past has been thinking of myself as an artist. I have had no difficulty thinking of myself as a photographer, even though I have only rarely earned anything from it. I have been happy thinking of myself as a sort of journeyman photographer; more than a novice, but not a master at a craft. Thinking of myself as a photographer was/is inarguable; I take pictures. But the jump from photographer to artist has called for a leap of faith, and faith by it’s nature, by definition, means believing something without tangible proof.
But lately, in the last year specifically, I have felt a change. A change in my modus if you will. While out making photographs, I have become more relaxed, and more spontaneous. I’ll still use a tripod, for instance, but not as often, and I’m more likely to make an exposure on a whim. My methods have loosened up and so have my images. In the past I would have been very concerned about technical quality, sometimes to the point that I would forgo a photograph if I didn’t think I could have it sharp and properly exposed. While I still admire those qualities, I am no longer such a slave to them, and I think my photography is better as a result. Part of this change I credit to using my iPad and Nik Snapseed. While I think that Snapseed is a technical marvel, using it is not technical at all. It is very intuitive, almost organic, and the process goes quicker than Photoshop. I still use Photoshop, but not for everything; it’s a tool after all, and not all tasks require the same tool. (The same should be said for iPads and Snapseed of course.)
My takeaway from all this is that I have been liberated. I’m working more from my heart, my gut if you will, than from my brain. (Here is where someone is going to mistakenly infer that I think artists don’t use their brains, not true. What I think is that I’ve begun to let my heart lead my brain rather than the other way around.) It’s late at my age to come round to this point, but better late than never right? So finally, after all these years, I have come to think that just maybe I am becoming an artist after all.
Thanks for being tolerant while I ramble, and thanks for taking the time to visit the blog now and then. I’ll be sixty-eight December 31st. Do me a favor and wish me a Happy Birthday as you ring out the old year. You don’t have to comment here, just think it; I’ll get the message. Happy New Year to you all!
Panasonic Lumix G3 with 20mm f1.7 lens processed in Nik Snapseed® in my iPad Air.