Taking Flight

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I am not generally a spontaneous photographer. At least not in the sense of photos that happen in less than 5 seconds of seeing something. I do tend to be spontaneous in the sense that I wander with little direct and rely on intuition frequently. But when I do spot something I tend to be patient and take my time figuring it out before photographing it. Sometimes this takes less than a minute; sometimes it takes more than several minutes. Part of this is because of the cameras I use – the Hasselblad, Nikon or the pinholes – but a big part of it because I like the semi-meditative approach of finding something and then dwelling on it a minute before recording my thoughts/experience by way of an image.

Ausschnitt, Excerpt, Extracto, Extrait, Estratto

I awoke today with a simple photographic task. Show a small excerpt of my morning during Lockdown. So I thought I would turn to the subjects I know I always can when in need of photographs.  I enjoy reminding myself that the expectations I have of what images I’ll make prior to picking up the camera versus what images I find once I start shooting can be two very different things. You never know exactly what you will find and often the best thing you can do is just let chance set you up for the rest.

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Stay Safe, Stay Strong. I will see you on the other side.

Appreciation Of Self

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So “Who is your favourite photographer?” Historically that answer shifted quite a bit for me, depending on the day or the mood or which books I had recently flipped through. It was a complicated question to answer. But then I simplified it and changed the answer to “myself”. It came in a moment of inspiration, really. And without disrespect to the many incredible photographers out there, my favourite really ought to be myself. Sure, maybe this answer is implied in the question, as in “Who (besides yourself) is your favourite photographer?” But if so, I think it might have become so implied that many of us don’t even consider it as a possible answer. Have you ever considered yourself as your favourite photographer? And why shouldn’t you be? I would argue that many of the struggles that photographers go through internally stems from them not thinking highly enough of their own work. Learn to love your photography for if you do, you will do it longer, harder, and more frequently. And if you do those things, success will come naturally. But still I think many struggle with the concept of liking their work, or being their favourite photographer.

Being your own favourite photographer is not arrogant. Arrogance is when you think you are a better photographer than others. Or a more important photographer. Being your favourite photographer doesn’t have to involve thinking you are better than another, it just has to mean you like your own work the best. Since favouring is a matter of opinion and personal taste, shouldn’t your own work match your own personal taste the best?

Being your own favourite photographer doesn’t mean you necessarily think your work is good, it just means you like it the best.

Maybe your work is good and you like it the best, or maybe you know it isn’t terribly good but you still love it anyway. Separate the enjoyment of your work from the evaluation of how good it is or isn’t. Then you can focus on enjoying your photography and worry less about how good it is or is not. Because if you focus on enjoying it, you will tend to approach it in ways that cause it to get better.

This may be easier said than done, and to do that you will have to make a conscious effort. It will take work. But it starts with little steps.

Start by thinking of yourself as your own favourite photographer.

Just try it.

What’s Cooking In The Kitchen

Minestronne d’inizio autunno

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I know I know earl autumn has long been and gone, but this is my favourite Minestronne recipe, and the star is this beautiful Fennel.

After having received the gift of Flu for Christmas I was down and out for the count. Today is the first day since then that I feel a little normal (whatever that is).

Anyway, so today I am cooking this gorgeous soup.

Hope you are all well.

What’s Meant For You Will Be Yours

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Feel the wind
And set yourself the bolder course
Keep your heart
As open as a shrine
You’ll sail the perfect line

And after all
The dead ends and the lessons learned
After all
The stars have turned to stone
There’ll be peace
Across the great unbroken void
All benign
In your time
You’ll be fine
In your time

Wishing every single one of you peace and harmony. Let’s try it.

Talking To Trees

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Did you ever encounter someone with a really striking face. I’m not talking striking in the stereotypically beautiful way, but striking in that it has a lot of character. Maybe it is heavily scored by time or life, maybe it is scarred, maybe it is prominent structure… it made you stop and wonder about the story of the person behind the face. It also often makes you want to create a portrait of them. Anyway, I sometimes feel that way about trees.

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