So, today was the day. Between work life, family life and home upkeep and maintenance, I had yet to go out and take any photographs in 2012. Now, typically I am a fairly frequent shooting, going out at least three or four times per month at minimum. This year, for whatever reason, I couldn't find a reason to take the equipment out and take photos.
Maybe it had something to do with me re-evaluating why I photograph in the first place. When I first started in photography, I was all about the equipment. I upgraded my camera so many times in the beginning of digital photography, I think I lost track. Every camera was absolutely a step up, but there was nothing wrong with the previous camera, and my skills were not keeping pace with my spending. The good thing about beeing a gear head though is that there is always a reason to go out and shoot. I had to go out and try my new gear. The photographic subject was irrelevant. Just shoot, baby. Well, the loss of a well paying job along with a growing debt base has kept me from buying any new equi[ment for quite some time.
Maybe it had something to do with the slow down and eventual death of the photographic forum I belong to. I used to live to read and post on the Popular Photography Bulletin Board. There were hundreds of posts a day to wade through. Some of them were garbage, or opinionated drivel, but I was amazed at how much I actually learned by posting my photos, reading the critiques and sharing my opinions with my board mates. The magazine heavily supported the board in the beginning. Jack Howard was a mainstain, as were others. There were articles about the BBS in the magazine, and at one time the three heaviest participants were actually featured in an article in the magazine. Other contributors were tapped on the shoulder to write articles for the website. It was a fun time and it kept my photographic fuel tank full. Now however, it is different. There will be days without a post on the board. To be fair, there are not many "film vs. digital" debates left to fight. Now, just like in the film days, it is about technique, not about equiptment. Well, not as many people find that as enjoyable to discuss as defending their choice of brand. I have tried other boards, and they can be fun. I spend some time at "The Photography Corner" and less at "Fred Miranda", but they cannot come close to they hey day of the Pop Photo BBS.
Lastly, and I think this may be the real reason, I think I have become more thoughtful about my photography. I photograph for me, now, not others. Sure, the whole point of photography is to say "Look what I saw", and hopefully say that in a way that is interesting and thought provoking, but I no longer search out that "I want 15 positive comments on the BBS" shot. If I don't find it interesting, then I am not going to shoot it.
Today I went out and shot near my house. One reason is that I thought the spot would render some interesting photographs. The other, not so noble reason is that I was not feeling well and did not want to drive to far. At first, I wanted to find a great composition of the tree, forest, fence and highway. I thought there was some great potential for some layering. As I set up, I found that I liked the vehicles speeding through the shots and that they added a layer of motion and interest to the shots. I converted them to black and white, well, because I shot in the middle of the day and whites were a little blown out.
So, there it is, my first blog post. Let's see how long it takes me to do number two.