Of little import to most anyone else, I would think; but I had a small epiphany this morning (are any of them "small"?) About photography...either as a vocation, or a very involved hobby.
I have been asked innumerable times over my life, a tad over fifty of those years being involved more than casually with snapping pictures, how I always manage to "be there" at so many moments that may be deemed "Photograph worthy?" I have never truly thought it out, although I have always answered with whatever abstract "reason" popped into my head at the time...finally, just this morning, posting more photos to my groups here, the actuality of how good pictures are really taken came to me in absolute, unfailing truth and clarity. The simplicity is also rather striking.
It seems to me in all my newfound wisdom that a LOT of successful, meaningful photographs come into existence because of what I am LACKING in my Life. A reverse logic of what you CAN'T be doing, or living and loving...if you will. Such as...you cannot be raising a family of young children. Or even late teens. Or be married to the love of your life (with the possible exception including a spouse that is as passionate and involved in photography as you are
yourself. That may work...?) You cannot possibly actively participate in your children's lives, your family life...and give them the attention you wish, and they deserve, if you are splitting that love with your "photography" lover, mistress, friend...
You cannot be running a business you created, volunteering in innumerable capacities as a concerned citizen, maintaining a home, and family and being a cook, preacher, cop and judge, mother and father, friend, housekeeper, handyman, artist, banker, lawyer, doctor and nurse, bookkeeper, florist, electrician, mason, lover, companion, postman, baker, psychologist, architect and YOU...and BE THERE, in the moment that your beloved photograph requires you to be, and be the shutterbug to God's eternally moving scenes.
I now realize that although I have been all these things for the last 22 years of my life, and I have indeed captured hundreds, thousands of what I consider worthy images of Life and Nature; it is nowhere near the output, the "being present" that my love of photographing these ephemeral instants in time scream out to me to pursue...to give THEM
the love and attention they need, and deserve.
Once upon a time, when my human being lovers were in and out of my Life, before I created my beautiful children; when I was alone and in love with the idea of love (but not actually living it), when I could be relatively selfish and concentrate on what comprised a huge portion of my being - this Earth, it's natural processes, living creatures and
indescribable beauty and bounty - I took thousands upon thousands of quality photos. I surrounded myself with the opportunities, indeed, created entire itineraries of days at a time, when all I was doing was climbing mountains, seeking foreign lands, chasing vistas and peoples I had never met or laid eyes upon. The "instants" that comprise
the portfolio of an avid amateur or a professional photographer are easy to come by when you are alone...alone with your mistress...and you sacrifice all those other "loves" of your suspended Life and dedicate yourself to filling your need for Nature, and Beauty, and God's heights and Earth, and Water and Air and Fire.
I have one "child" of five left at home...to turn 19 years old this October 28th. The woman I fell in love with, through TBD and across 3000 miles, has made it clear that there are too many hurdles to our being together. I have chronic health issues that leave me disabled. All the "things" that took me away from those aforementioned selfish pursuits and interests have themselves fallen by the wayside, grown wings and flown on, or spurned my devotions. So be it.
I believe my epiphiny about making pretty pictures came about because I find myself, once again, out wandering the hills, combing the shorelines and meadows, wandering and breathing the pure air and marveling at the amazing light and the beauty and the...rightness...of being one with Nature once again. Although I feel the huge holes in my heart and soul of departing children, and physical limitations, and unrequited love, I have returned to what was once my entire existence; the lover who never displeases, who soothes and caresses my aches and pains and lonliness and fills me up with grandeur and majesty and beauty and solace of my soul.
Taking good photos is easy...all you have to do is spend the time, pay attention, and give up or lose all the distractions of having more than ONE love...simple.