As I’m sitting in front of my computer right now, I’m feeling a few different things. Number one would be my dislike for blogging in general and my hope that you’ll just come hang out with me instead of reading about my life. Probably not entirely realistic, but still it crosses my mind. Two, I’m absolutely sure I need ANOTHER cup of coffee. This is a priority. And three, I’m staring at the list of finished event and portrait photography sessions on my computer trying to decide what to blog first. Hmmmmm.
I generally love people. I like telling you stories about the people I’m able to photograph, the moment that touched me the most on my bride’s wedding day, the silly thing I did to capture a child’s attention to create an image, etc. But as I was staring at the list of things I could talk about, I started thinking about the why I talk about it at all.
To be a “creative” is actually a very odd thing. We are, as a rule, the odd kids sitting in the corner rearranging the lunchroom tables without asking and thinking about how cool a brightly colored mural would be. We are the kids that love super deeply, have very short attention spans, and get way too excited about things that other people just roll their eyes at.
I am what you would call an “idea” person, I think.
Truly, just ask my husband. I come up with the idea of painting the wall, get super excited, prep for about 30 seconds and lay down on the floor in a fit of despair like Sadness from the movie Inside Out as my husband finishes every bit of prep work and probably paints the rest of the wall. To be fair, occasionally, I revive in time to paint pretty colors. Occasionally.
My point in all this is that one of the biggest challenges as a creative person is to remember what it means to create as well as the why of creating at all.
Last night I calendared 4 styled photography sessions for this year that had nothing to do with each other and were increasingly…. um…. creative. Some of them are pretty out of the box, some I’m ridiculously excited about, and some I’m downright panicked about whether I can even pull them off. Although I LOVE my clients, and I love being invited into something as important as a moment like your wedding day. It is your wedding day. On that day, I’m not thinking about how to grow as a person or as a photographer. I’m hopefully making sure that every part of what you need is being taken care of and my team and I are trying to capture an editorial picture of your love story. I do styled photography sessions because I need to push myself to try something new for me. I need to be scared that it’s going to be an epic failure all over again and I need to keep rearranging the tables in the lunchroom. I just do.
I once sat in a photography seminar and the speaker said, “if you don’t figure out your why, you won’t last in this business”. I know being a professional photographer might sound like a dream job, I assure you, as with every other thing in life, there is a lot more to it than you see. 🙂 I am blessed beyond measure to be able to do this, but there are also days that it’s just too much to handle. My why, and what keeps my focus, is that when you look at an image, I feel like I’ve given you a piece of history to hold. Even if that history just happened 5 minutes ago. It’s there, it’s tangible, it’s something you can hold on to forever. I’m in love with photography because I’m in love with people, and families, and relationships. When I hold an image my grandmother made of me as a child, I remember her. I remember her legacy and I remember the emotion of the love that her and I shared with each other. When I look at an image I’ve made of my sons, I feel the same way. It’s a gift to have every one of those images.
That is, my why. I know that I must continue to try and grow and push myself as a creative in order to promise myself that I’m bringing the very best of what I have to the people that trust me to make images for them.
So next week when I post something a little more “normal,” remember that behind every story I share is all of this and 4 insanely crazy 2016 styled photography sessions. 🙂
These smiling faces are my boys. Enjoy.