Somewhere along the way this year, I lost a passion.
I was holding the camera, taking/editing/selling/sharing photographs but the camera was no longer holding me. The fire went out. Once I realized that I had reached total photography burn out, to the point of considering another profession, I set out on a quest to rekindle my passion for taking pictures. I wanted to love it again.
Passion is as elusive as it is all-consuming. Where did I lose it? How do I get it back? Is it gone forever? Am I destined for blah, blah, blah.
Right now, daily, I’m digging in to these questions and I am making progress in fueling my inner fire. It’s feels like a rebirth, raw, painful and naked. It’s difficult but exciting. Here are a few of the steps I’ve taken. There are more. But I still am learning what they are.
Step one: Stop. Don’t take pictures. See the world with your eyes not through a viewfinder. For me, this took roughly a month. Until I recognized that this option sucked. I am a storyteller. Taking away my camera was like being an amputee.
Step two: Why. Why do I take pictures? Not for the profit margin, I assure you. Though it is my business. Our answers to this will vary. Try this exercise…and be honest with yourself.
For me, the “why” exists in the meaning of an image. What’s at the heart of the photo. I’ve taken countless photos. A few dozen of them truly MEAN something to me. I’m not talking about well captured, neatly crafted edits we use for our portfolio to gather new business or notoriety. I’m talking about photos that make me feel. Make me understand a character or the world. Photos that evoke raw emotion or understanding. That is why I depress the shutter. To evoke.
That’s as far as I’ve gotten so far. I’m hellbent on finding my passion again. I am hopeful I will find it again. I invite you on the journey from passion lost to passion found with me. Maybe you need the trek as much as I do. Maybe we can learn from each other. I’ll be sharing on my progress regularly using the hashtag #evoke on Twitter & Instagram.