Expect No Expectations

Almost 4 months since my last post. It’s not only this blog but also photography that I stopped during the entirety of my summer. Besides just being a massive drama queen I’m not entirely sure why I stopped. I wasn’t busy, I had all the time in the world and I even traveled all over the country. Yet the idea of photographing everywhere I went and everything I did suddenly seemed beyond bothersome. Why even bother, right?

I know, this is a  drastic change from the previous year. The summer before ALL I did was take photos. One every day for that matter. And it was amazingly satisfying. Go through this blog and see my most active days were last summer. When school started I was STILL taking photos some how, and when I wasn’t I was just writing about how much I love photography. I was like some kind of amazing, persevering  dedicated photo dork.

I think earlier this year when I realized I wouldn’t be able to complete my 365 project, that I failed, was a bit of a downer. I got a third of the way through and then…gave up? It felt terrible and that was one excuse I gave myself for stopping photography.

Another reason was just…why? Why feel the impulse to photograph things? And then share it with others? What’s the point of it all? And this summer I just wanted to stop. I didn’t even want to pick up a camera. I had an amazing summer and experienced so many things. But I didn’t want to capture any of it. I just wanted to experience it, feel it, and let it go.

Capturing an experience through my camera just felt like I was trivializing it so much. When you really feel something, a photo isn’t enough to describe it. 1000 words isn’t enough. It was frustrating -like I found the limits of photography. An art form that was so personal to me suddenly become a means of limitation.

But today out of curiosity I just picked up my camera. How would it feel to just take a photo: no expectations of anything good. Just take a snap -it’s not a big deal at all. It’s not some metaphorical symbol of my life. It’s just a photo. And I did. And…it wasn’t terrible. It was actually kind of nice. I was terrified of the commitment: does taking one photo mean I have to take one every day all the time? Do they all have to be masterpieces? People expect me to take good photos, I expect myself to take great photos!

Expectations. Commitment. Heart ache. It feels like I’m in a relationship with my camera.

So maybe i’ll start taking more photos again. Maybe not. Maybe i’ll update more often, maybe not. I’m just not really going to lay out any expectations. And usually that’s the best. Usually that means something good is going to happen. But also that means I’m really going to be a bother to my subscribers.

It’s not different, special, beautiful. It’s just a window. It’s just light. And just being able to see it as it is…that’s the true beauty.

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2 thoughts on “Expect No Expectations

  1. There is only so much creative energy that any one person has at any given time; you choose how you spend it and when it is gone you choose how to renew it. Pursuing other things–your life is rich!–can only make you a better photographer if you decide that is what you want! Don’t get trapped by expectations or shoulds. Move like water. God is everywhere.

  2. I completely understand where you are coming from. Your photos are amazing, and I love following your blog, but it doesn’t matter if you post everyday or once in 4 months – you are still a great photographer!

    Also, I love the photo of the window – it’s simple and beautiful :)

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