nothing is worse than waking up before it’s time … & in the summer, when it’s light at like 4:30 AM, i’m finding my eyes wide open and brain on over drive. and for the next hour or so, i toss/turn and churn over every negative thought i can possibly have. in short, my ego is in auto-drive.
for me, the ego advances a dialogue that usually begins with a lightening flash review of work posted by one of the many photographers who’s work i admire. “it” thinks of how thoughtful their images are - the care in composing, the clean editing, the gentle and grascious manner of presentation. then “it” points to one of my recent shoots. and the review that emerges is one of madness for “it” does not allow another more balanced review to come into focus but focuses on a brutal critique that is perceived as a whirlwind of rushed mania - quick to emphasize a sense of not taking the time or care to be patient, to thoroughly see what is, to pre-visualize all the way through how things will look in the end.
this in turn moves inevitably to all the things “it” knows i’m insecure about, the silliness and ineptness of my presence, my eye, my point of view, my being, my abilities. and we go on/on like this until sleep finally washes over.
and i wonder why upon waking i feel out of sorts. why with every advance there’s a hesitation. with every growth, a put down. why it’s clear that the ego – this “it” is determined to prevent one from working, from doing, from moving forward.
and i’m so very grateful to Steven Pressfield for writing the War of Art (link provided only because if you are an artist and don’t have it, i strongly recommend it) for helping illuminate the madness and offer a way to the other side.
when my thoughts settle, i have time for honest reflection, one that’s kind and sincere and love filled. one that allows for a seeing others work with a pure sense of inspiration and appreciation. so i feel excited to move forward, empowered with my humble advances and gratitude for all that i do have, for the choices i have made. and within this space, things like the sentiments from robert frank sort of show up:
My photographs are not planned or composed in advance and I do not
anticipate that the on-looker will share my viewpoint. However, I feel that if
my photograph leaves an image on his mind—something has been
If the photographer wants to be an artist, his thoughts cannot
be developed overnight at the corner drugstore.
thoughts like this allow me to see that the real beauty is, we all are allowed to do things in the way that makes sense for us. there is no right or wrong way. there is only doing.