Sitting by the ocean, sky full of menace, water rustling and the night was never ending.
Recently I have revisited some forgotten images I made at different times. And whilst looking through these lonely small pieces of exposed film one of my favourite pieces about photography came into view in the form of a fellow Photographer writing about his experience on carrying his Camera for a year without any film in it. He still made photos, just not onto film.
This stuck with me and I recount the story now and then, mostly getting puzzled looks and scratched heads. Many don’t get the why of it. I do.
I stand somewhere, I look, I think, I carefully line up the compositions in my head. I pull out my camera, I expose film. Then nothing. I haven’t been scanning them in. They sit in their pages waiting for The Moment to arrive. But that is not even all true. It isn’t that they are waiting for the moment; it is that they are waiting for me. And this is largely because what I want out of the process I have already achieved: the rethinking how I look at the world, the rethinking how I look and go about photography. I don’t need some finished image to do this. I just need the camera and a place and peace of mind. I’ll gladly expose the film with the plan to get to it at some point but by the time silver halide crystals have reacted to light, my intentions have been met.
So my drive to keep making photographs has remained strong, I just have not had much drive to create something finished. This is good and bad, I suppose. It definitely hearkens back to my philosophy that I do my photography for myself and the photos are a beneficial side product that comes of that way of life. But those completed images have a value that is only realised in finishing them and the sharing that generally comes afterward. I enjoy the sharing and inspiring and the teaching and the motivating. But my own motivations focus on other aspects of this process.
I know what you abandon dies. What you leave leaves you too
I know you can’t go back. If there’s nothing to go back to