Walk With Me (A Grey Summer’s Day)
Photo Walk 1 July 2023
It has been quite some time since my last share in Aeryn’s Sketchbook. Here, as I share my photos from yesterday, I am also writing a little bit about my struggles with publishing my art, and my thoughts on doing it anyway.
If you would like to skip the writing and see a full gallery of photos from my walk, you can do so on my Flickr account with this link.
So, here begins a new section in my Sketchbook called Photo Blog. And from this point, I may begin sharing my work more frequently. At least, that’s my intention, and hope.
If you find the publishing frequency a bit too much at any point in the future, you can simply turn off emails from the Photo Blog section. Just log into your Substack account here, and deselect Photo Blog from the list.
I hope you enjoy walking with me,
I am doing something brave. I am publishing work that is “incomplete”.
If you know me, you may know that creatively, photography is my passion. I have been all about photography since I was a kid. More-or-less ever since my Dad took me to a camera shop in the next town one day, and bought me an old Zenith 35 mm film camera.
Another thing you might know about me is that (sometimes) I am constantly taking photos. When I'm feeling a bit more well and inspired, I take photos on a nearly daily basis. I usually have a camera with me just in case, not just a smartphone. (Do you remember when they were called camera phones?)
All these years of photos have built up into quite a large archive of work on my computer, most of which I have never shared. And the main reason for that, is that I have not even seen a lot of that work myself. It’s all sitting there on my hard drives waiting for some love.
But there is another reason for hiding my work away. Perfectionism.
Whilst I do struggle with my health and capacity for work, my need for perfection is also a big reason I cannot complete projects. I want to change that.
I would like to see a creative project as something that is open-ended, without the need for a sense of completion for me to feel fulfilled as an artist. Anything I do finish doesn’t need to be perfect because that’s completely unrealistic.
And in many ways, that is already true. The shutter clicks have always been moments for me that mark the peak of photography. After which, my interest in the photographs I have just made diminish rapidly. I feel that I have experienced something beautiful in being in that moment. Appreciating the work later on a screen is a reminder, but the moment is passed.
Of course, I do enjoy tinkering, processing, editing and cataloging. And I do enjoy sharing my photography.
When my Mum asked me to share the photos I took yesterday, there was a familiar feeling in the pit of my stomach. Like feeling lost and overwhelmed. Knowing I have this work, but feeling all kinds of resistance inside of me of actually sharing it. I found myself imagining all the work I would have to do before I would be happy to share.
Procrastination and perfectionism is the hard work, not uploading the photos. I do feel proud of my work just as it is. And so I should be! These photos I am sharing here today are a lovely reminder of the joyful walk I took in my local village and park yesterday.
I’m not saying this work represents great photography, but it does represent Me. I am here in these photos. They do not need to be perfect, and they do not need to be finished to tell a story. They do not need to be anything but a collection of moments in time – an experience; a feeling.
So, I hope you will enjoy experiencing my art here on this page. And maybe I will decide to edit them later, edit some things I would like to change. But in the meantime, at least I will have shared them, just as they are.
Thanks for reading.
These photos were shot on my Ricoh GR II with the Positive Film filter and are shared straight from the camera with no editing. Some are a little soft. I am experimenting with not needing front-to-back focus.
A selection of 60 photos from this walk can be found in a private album on my Flickr account, with this link.