There was a time that I would spend a lot of energy and resources around photography – going to exhibitions, reading manuals, tutorials, magazines, websites, taking photos, butchering photos digitally, posting photos, classifying photos. And then somehow the interest has faded away. I realize there weren’t really lots of new things that I could learn about the basics. That doesn’t mean that I came to master them, but that it comes a point that you have to go beyond learning the theory and start practicing the theory in a more rigorous way. Same with keeping up with new gear – if you don’t plan to use or really need it, you just have to settle at some point with what you have. Other interests come and fill up your free time.
I need to make a conscious effort to make time for photography because I do like taking photos, but it might have to coincide with new travels, new settings. There is also a need to find inner sources of motivation. Probably in the past I relied too much on feedback from others, even though I never had a huge follower base, there were always the odd internet acquaintances – some of them even professional photographers – that would give me an eventual comment or recommendation.
But it might be a good thing after all, if I get back into butchering photos doing it without needing or expecting feedback. At some time I did, and maybe I should start again, posting horrible photos with burnt highlights and clipped shadows, with horrible posterized colors and centered subjects, with no regard to depth of field, sharpness or blurriness for that matter. Ah, yes, to be free and careless, a brut artist. Oh wait,maybe someone will find something to praise there. Oh well, you can never win …
‘Selfie’ – the contraction for self-portrait – was declared word of the year 2013 by to Oxford Dictionaries. But apparently people take the term selfie as just a photo of themselves, not necessarily taken by themselves. I’ve also seen the term used for photos where the ‘selfie‘ is accompanied by other people. Do group photos count as ‘selfies‘?
Looks like it’s enough for a selfie to count as one if you can ‘picture’ yourself in the photo taken.
Interesting how photomaton photos weren’t really considered as self-portraits though technically the subject was the one operating the machine. No one said in a form – attach (self)portrait.
Even weirder is the use of the term unselfie – logically, what is not a selfie will count as a unselfie. It is almost like a zen koan:
What is left from a selfie once you remove yourself from the picture?
Last week my C:\ drive died so had to replace it. I’ve got a new c:\ with Windows 8, which means I need to adjust to a new operating system. And reinstall all the programs, applications, devices I use. And try to recover my iTunes library. ITunes has also changed lately so I have to relearn how to install everything again. Firefox has been reinstalled and I lost all my marklets, booklets, shortcuts, you name it.
And now Flickr has also changed. Yeah, my photos look better because I’ve uploaded in most cases high resolution versions, but everything is so crowded, or at it least it looks that way to me. I feel like I have to learn everything again, feeling so old suddenly, things changing so fast. It’s been almost 8 years I’ve been on Flickr, I’ve been through many changes since I’ve started. Before it was acquired by Yahoo. And now Tumblr has also been acquired by Yahoo. I loved posting quotes on Tumblr. Will that change too? Am I being left behind by the social media train? One that is biggr, fastr, bettr and ultimately irrelevant?
I’ve never been good at baking or knitting. My hobbies consist of butchering images and posting them on Flickr. And posting quotes on tumblr of articles I found via Twitter. That was so 2010…
But as the Red Queen said “…it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.”
Someone gave me an apple last week. A green one. I decided I should eat it at some point and left it in my office. Next day I came into my office I saw it and realized I’ve forgot totally about the apple. I came to the conclusion that I was not going to eat it at the office, because somehow the work environment is not favorable for me to eat apples. So I decided to put it in my purse and take it with me back home, where surely I’ll be more in the mood of eating it.
When I was home I saw the apple in my purse and convinced myself that it was not the moment to eat it. So I decided to leave it in my purse to take it back to the office, where surely I’d be hungry at some moment or the other, and then the apple will be there, ready for me to eat it.
Now it’s time to go back home, my work day has finished. I go to my locker, grab my purse and what do I see? My green companion apple, there she is, ready for when I’m ready to eat it. You can see that, even if she’s strong, the travels back and forth in my purse have taken their toll in her smooth surface.
I should really eat it before it goes back to the office, but now the thing has grown into me. It’s like a good-health fetish: “I’m being very health-conscious, see how I have my apple prepared for when I have a little hunger”.
It would be just easier to come to terms with the fact that I don’t like green apples. And then I could let her go, thank her for the good moments we’ve spent together the last couple of days and go on with my life.
And just for the record, I have some chocolates that have been with me since way back, they live in my desk drawer. They don’t go bad, they’ve just become hard and dry, like a bitter old lady. They’re chocolate mummies. Those are my junk-food fetishes, to remind me that I could eat them if I wanted to.
And you, do you have any food companion?
I’ve decided to give my 43 folders a chance. As from today and for a month I’ll use them as methodically as I can. At then end I’ll report on how I did.
This year I’ll:
- stop worrying so much
- remember I have only a limited influence on events
- focus on my own actions and choices
- let others live their own lives
- have fun
What about you?