Goodness me where does the year go – August already. At this rate the fat jolly bearded man will be soon wandering the streets with a red face and a jolly smile (no not me, Santa). So far, from a photography point of view, it’s been a real mixed bag. I started the year with a bang shooting more images (and from that enough keepers to keep me happy), visiting more new locations, and following some new species that I’d never photographed before. I also was managing my time a little better allowing me more time to actually indulge in my passion for photography. On top of this I was blogging more, had continued with my monthly newsletter and had even managed to snag one or two images for my Britain’s Big 5 project.
The following 3 months (or Q2 in business speak) has, from a photography point of view, been a much more challenging time. On the plus side April and May were the busiest I’ve been on the football front – even managing to cover one of the Playoff finals. Take-up of my images has also seen a significant increase which is pleasing. I also had another trip to Mull (Otters mostly) and Skokholm (Puffins).
On the negative side the newsletters have dried up, blogging has taken a back seat and my time management has again taken a serious hit. It is on that last point that my concern lies most. You see when I don’t keep an eye on my time management the one thing that seems to suffer the most is the one thing that I care about most (humans and pets excepted) – My Photography.
Like Any Passion, Time is Needed to Grow
Apart from the two trips in June (albeit that was 14 days of non-stop photography) I’ve struggled to make time for photography. While in the past the odd hour here and there would have seen me out with the camera – quite often with no plan in mind but enjoying myself nonetheless – I now find myself thinking I need to have a significant amount of planning beforehand to make the shoot worthwhile. While I believe 100% in proper planning most of the time, I also feel I’ve used the lack of a plan as an excuse not to head out with the camera. This, despite the fact I may be wide awake on a beautiful sunny morning at 5am, several hours to spare before I need to be anywhere. The odd thing is I know that by not spending time with my camera I’m hurting myself. You see, for me, photography is such a passion that I miss it – almost like a lost loved one – when I’ve not been doing it. I know that may sound a bit hippy-dippy – but it’s the only way I can describe it. A large part of me is left empty without photography and that emptiness manifests itself in other ways in other areas of my life – which ultimately makes me a much unhappier person overall.
The Next 6 Months
So what’s needed? Well to be honest it’s not really rocket science .. It’s quite simple. Time with the camera. While I can spend hours online surrounding myself with all manner of photography (beautiful images, educational videos and industry predictions) ultimately the one thing that makes me happiest is getting out there with the camera. The past few weeks have been a bit of a watershed moment for me – in a number of ways including my photography.
I need to step out of my comfort zone a little as well. I need to challenge myself. I need to grow as a photographer.
As ultimately I believe growth as a photographer will touch all aspects of my life in a positive way.