Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Photography is like a relationship.

My relationship has been failing the past month or so for more than one reason I suspect. I'm sure you're expecting some of the same tired excuses...its the summer, things are busy, work, blah blah blah. But I realized something last night. I put my camera away. And by away, I mean I put it in its bag and put it in the corner of my den and just didn't look at it. Out of sight out of mind.

Mini scooters are dangerous. Just because you don't need a motorcycle endorsement doesn't mean you can't hurt yourself. In the wake of high siding my friends scooter (Sorry AJ), and having done so on the eve of my 2 week vacation, I had to see if post shoulder injury, I could even lift my camera. Into my den I went and the familiar clink of the aluminum buckles as I gingerly (stiff shoulder and all) broke into my camera bag. Thankfully, I could lift the camera but wasn't able to hold it up for long without some pain.

I realized something though. I love my camera. Love it! I just like holding it and looking at it and cleaning it and pointing it at things just for the sake of it. I had found an old friend again (chhhhhheeeeeezy) but I came to realize something else. I should have never put my camera away. Putting it in the case and in the corner was the worst thing in the world. I didn't see it sitting there...I didn't give my camera a thought until I was out and about thinking, "Damn I wish I had my camera." In the world of being a photographer, that’s an epic fail.

Always keep your camera within reach. It’s wasted if it’s just sitting in your spare room or in the closet unused. How many craigslist ads have you read where the post reads something to the effect of "it’s been in the closet and I just can’t justify keeping it anymore."


From now on, my camera will be sitting in its bag, next to my computer where I spend too much of my time. It will be in my face and I’ll start fiddling with it for no reason (which happens to be the best reason). I can't tell you how many pictures of my keyboard and TV remote I’ve taken just experimenting with my camera because I was bored. The key here is daily interaction, no matter what the subject. Always learning and always looking at things in a new way.

My tools

So how is it that photography is like a relationship then? It’s rather simple. It’s like working out or anything else you do in your life. If you don’t constantly put effort into it, nurture it, talk to it, touch it, you won’t DO it. Simple as that. What if you came home at the end of the day and didn’t say hi to your wife or girlfriend? Didn’t give her a hug or kiss or even a second glance? How long would that last? Not long. I fear that I’d end up cheating….cheating on photography with… riding motorcycles and that only got me hurt! Lesson learned.

Kiss your wife/girlfriend hello and then pick up your camera.

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