Here in the last several months, and especially here in the last few weeks, I have really been thinking a lot about who I am as a photographer. What is my style? What is it that I want to do with my craft? Where do I want to be in five years, or even five months? What am I struggling with and how can I overcome it? In a market overflowing with photographers, and especially living in a small town full of talented ones, how does one not bleed into the crowd? Staying true to yourself and your own vision. I recall Tim Walker mentioning somewhere that one of the best pieces of advice he received while working as an assistant for Richard Avedon was "to shoot what you love." And that's exactly what I want to do. I want to go out and seek the beauty in the simple things. Write beautiful lyrics with light! Meet new people and make wonderful music together! Easier said than done sometimes, especially when you're also trying to find ways to earn a living with your craft. But that being said, I've come to realize that making photographs that I love will work to my benefit because it will clearly show people who and what I am as a photographer.
My copy of Elizabeth Messina's new book, The Luminous Portrait, finally arrived a few days ago. I love her style and the fact that she considers herself a "natural-light photographer". The way she approaches her subjects and her craft are similar to my own. Seek out the best light and capture beauty in authenticity, even if it's a stylized shoot. After reading it this weekend, I felt rejuvenated and empowered, anxious to get back out with my camera and make some beautiful imagery. My goal is to come up with ideas for conceptual photo shoots and putting together the plans to make them happen. I think after having put together our mock vintage wedding, this should be a piece of cake!
Before I let you go (and thank you for reading my ramblings this morning by the way) I want to direct you to my good friend Zila Longenecker's new blog, Thistle & Fern. Zee's work always whispers beauty and simplicity. I hope to feature Zee and her new blog here soon, but until then walk on over to her serene and beautiful space. Until next time friends!