I have always used my nature photography as a creative release for myself; and an excuse to be outdoors. Hard to separate these two passions of mine, and why bother to do so. I am always happy when others see beauty in my photographs because I know they are able to find the art and emotion in nature as I have done. My giving pleasure to others with my photographs is a gift to me because it surpasses my intent to merely entertain and enrich myself.
But….. that ever negative “but”…. flattered though I am with praise of my photographic eye, I shut down when those close to me suggest broader audiences for my work. Excuses overflow my brain, tiring me instantly. Everyone today has ability to take quality images; everyone outdoors seems to take endless images of flowers and animals. There are umpteen (is that a word!?) flower books, garden books, nature books, greeting cards with flowers to be had for next to nothing in cost. Why would I possibly want to compete in an over saturated market that offers quality for low, discounted pricing? I’ve already had the adventure as starving (well, struggling) portrait photographer; why would I want to re-enter the art arena again? And why would I want to enter it with a subject and medium that is typical on both accounts?
Then I watch “In Search of Beethoven” and “Genius Within: Glenn Gould”. Music is just as prolific (not sure of statistics, but true enough) as flower photography. Music is diverse in style and culture; nature photography covers many possible themes as well. And…wake up call…. people crave new music all the time. Music has been composed for hundreds of years and still new music is welcomed daily. Because it’s soul enriching. So why not flower photography? It too has the ability when done well to enrich the soul.
I enjoy the process of flower photography; I enjoy all nature photography but tend to focus on flowers and the small creatures that attend to them. Composers enjoy the art of composition. But the listener of music and the viewer of photographs enjoy the sensual experience. They need new experiences to continue this pleasure; though favorite pieces (be it music or photo) will always exist for each person.
So now I rethink my purpose of photography. Well, not my personal purpose, of enriching myself. But rethink if I should and how I might share the results of my passion with others. This blog is one way. Perhaps I could do more. “Should” is a word that turns me away from this idea. I already have plenty of “shoulds” in my life. Photography is a great pleasure and I do not ever want its focus to be more “should” oriented and less of a passion. So how to share more and stay sane from business oriented burdens. But it will be something I ponder now more positively.