Its been over a year since I posted anything and during that time I've put down my camera for months at a time only to pick it up occasionally to snap photos here and there. Sure, life has thrown a lot of curve balls at me over the last two years and I could blame these life changes for my lack of interest in photography, but in reality it was just time for me to try other things without a camera. I didn't realize it at the time when I was shooting, but my camera became my crutch in life as everything centered around photography and I became less interested in taking in the moment for what it was. In a sense, I had forgotten what it was like to go out and explore without a 5 pound weight hanging around my neck and over time this camera weight started to feel more and more like a ball and chain. So I stopped photographing.
Instead of taking photos, I became more focused on photography ideas, looking and thinking about art, and I tried to just enjoy life without a camera for a while. During this photography downtime, I decided to try other creative outlets and instead of taking photos I wrote and drew a little, but mostly I just observed my life around me. Overtime I worked to see life differently and I can vividly remember more events that I normally would not have remembered when I was shooting. I suppose it has always been hard for me to simultaneously take photographs and observe my surroundings and at times I think I have been successful in doing so, but most of the time I am either focused on shooting or observing and rarely accomplish both. I also wonder if this ability to take photographs and see your surroundings is what makes the difference between good photographers and great photographers.
This past year I've picked up my camera several times to go out and adventure. Each time that I've gone on one of these photo adventures I have found another reason to shoot and also found the remnants of some photography idea that I've had. Last month I was out with a friend at a Tulip Festival near where I live and instead of going to the actual festival we drove around and found some dead tulips. For some reason, when my friend stood in front of the dying tulips and posed in the wind, her body movements reminded me of a photograph that I had taken several years ago. In this photograph, I had photographed a friend who was going through a hard time and wanted to create something that was inspirational and powerful for her. We decided to collaborate an idea around fire because she loved woodsmoke and I still saw a burning fire in her eye despite her personal struggles. We set out into the woods and created this photograph with a vague idea of what we were creating and ignited a whole slew of ideas for me.
Over time, I had imagined creating more images like this, but for some reason never did and I eventually let the idea fade into memory until recently.
After the tulip adventure, I asked my friend if she would pose for me in the North Cascades National Park for a moonlit scene. My idea was still kind of unknown to me, but I knew that I wanted a moonlit scene with mountains in the background. I wanted to create an image that had some kind of relationship or dynamic between a girl and the moon, but I didn't really know how to create this relationship other than to show up and try it. So we set a date for the full moon last week and went for it just like in the previous photograph.
I'm not sure how these two images will relate to one another or how other images will be added to this collection, but I'm hopeful that in time the idea will come together just as these individual photographs have come together.