I Think

img014-7

I think a lot. Sometimes I think too much. This is the thought I generally have at about 1am when I am wrestling with busy brain syndrome and cannot fall asleep. Here are a couple of thoughts kicking around in my head at this nightly hour.

What one sentence would you pass on in the event of a cataclysm that contained the most information with the fewest words, what would I say? Or what image of mine would I single out?”

“Is creating art a response to our own knowledge of our mortality?”

“If time is a human construct, how would we abandoning it and how would that change the way we lived?”

“I wonder what the post will bring tomorrow.”

And the list goes on.

This is a very long-winded introduction to me saying that photography is where I try to think the least. I try not to put thought into my images but rather try to put my feelings or emotions into them. Put another way, I try to make images based on what I am feeling rather than what I am thinking. I don’t know if this is to give my brain a rest or to give me a rest from my brain. A bit of both I would guess.

For the most part this works really well for me. I have become good at disengaging from my thoughts while I am out photographing.  I don’t like listening to music while I photograph either because it affects how I feel, which then affects how I photograph. For me it is enough to be there in a moment responding to subtle currents within me that I will struggle with later to put a finger on.

In fact, this is where my problems usually arise: when I try to think about my photos after the fact and figure them out. Generally I don’t do this too much. The photos are not products of thought, but rather visual translations of moods or feelings passing through me in a particular place or at some particular time. Thought doesn’t typically enter into that equation and therefore makes for an awkward fit I have found when forcibly injected into it later.

Anyhow, even now I am applying more thought to this image than I should, but sometimes I find the thinking “out load” to be an effective means of getting it out of my head.

That and I do like doing the writing just for the practice.

So don’t fret if you cannot explain your photos, or if you worry about the perceived lack of thought in them. Some photos are meant to embody a great deal of thought, but not all images. It is ok to make images that cannot be so intellectually described or explained. It is ok to make images on hunches, feelings, intuition, or the like. And it is ok to not understand your own images after you have made them. In fact, I rather enjoy it at times – the mystery of it all.

So here you go. Hopefully nothing I said gets you to thinking too much and keeps you awake tonight.

What’s Cooking In The Kitchen

Minestronne d’inizio autunno

img949

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.

Musing About Light

L1005029

The weather has really taken a right turn here. This whole week was rain and overcast skies, which means the quality of light has really changed here. And that in turn has me thinking about light. In some sense, I am always thinking about light. It is difficult to be a photographer and not think about light. I love the light this time of year, it is some of my favourite. I also love the weather. Which makes me the inverse of many who prefer the summer months. I am not much of a sunny day kind of guy but this year I spent much more time working with those bright, full-on sun days and learning to photograph in that kind of light.

So this is one of the photos I made, where I was trying to work with the light, and the mood it brought with it. So much of photography hinges upon what happens before the photo ever exists. It is what is going on in your head. So I always try to work on that, being mindful of how I am thinking in addition to what I am thinking. And yes, it has been easy for me to slip into the “I don’t like sunny, bright days” mentality, but this year has also seen me have success pushing back against that and getting images I like as a result.

I only share this because moving into the rainy autumn months; I know many out there do the same thing with this weather. So I wanted to try to remind you that there are other perspectives out there. If you can find ways to tap into those, or share in what they see a bit, it can have a big benefit in terms of what you can do with that camera.

Good luck!