“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”
— Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities —
No doubt much of this sentiment vividly echoes today. We are living in turbulent times, but we are also living in the most advanced, wondrous time the world has ever known. The video below will offer a glimpse into this proposition and hopefully some JBRish readers will find inspiration and motivation to achieve more than they thought you could.
Undoubtedly some may find it a bit too proselytizing or idealistic and that’s OK too. If you don’t enjoy this style of video, or it just isn’t your thing, I hope that the quotes below, from the video, will provide food for thought.
The video below has some NSFW language. Of course nowadays it may be difficult to judge what NSFW even means, but I would find some of the language offensive if my young child heard them or I had a middle schooler who wasn’t mature enough to hear them. Please consider this before you read further or watch the video.
The video is comprised of numerous clips from motion pictures, lectures, speeches, etc. and it is a bit lengthy, coming in at 38:24, but it goes fast IMHO.
Some quotes from the video, but not all the quotes:
“Excuses sound best to the people who are making hem up.” — Tyrese Gibson
“You can’t talk yourself out of something that you behaved yourself into!” — Stephen Covey
“It took me twelve years to get a four year degree but I got it and guess what, on a degree it don’t have dates. So if it took you four and it took me twelve it don’t show up nowhere, but I’m exactly where I want to be.” — Eric Thomas [some editing applied]
“I don’t believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive.” — Joseph Campbell
“The world shall perish not for lack of wonders, but for lack of wonder.” — J.B.S. Haldane
This is the time of year that photography websites start talking about ideas, resolutions, etc. for the New Year. We often hear about a monthly challenge or perhaps even a weekly challenge.
Every once in a while someone steps up and starts a 365 day photography challenge based on a theme or idea that they have. I am doing a modified* 365 day challenge by posting a picture-a-day for 365 days selected from the shots I took during our hiking and exploration trip to Yosemite National Park. This is the link if you are interested:
*NOTE – While I do intend to post 365 separate photos from my Yosemite excursions, I am not doing them strictly on consecutive days because of previous commitments and plans.
The PHOTOBLOG is stepping up to help those who might need inspiration for such a challenge by offering a yearly calendar with a new photography idea for every day of the year. This would be a wonderful resource for those who just want to gather new and fresh ideas or to stimulate ideas of their own. The PHOTOBLOG suggests it might make a nice gift for a phtographer-friend and I agree!
Here are some random examples of suggested ideas:
January 24, Tuesday – Something You made
February 17, Friday – Outside the window
March 20, Monday – Three Things
April 26, Wednesday – Flowers
May 6, Saturday – Street
June 1, Thursday – Together
July 23, Sunday – A Pair of Things
In addition to being a springboard for ideas, the calendar itself has very pretty photography and serves its general utilitarian function of keeping track of the dates. Each page has the main month along with the preceding and following month; a nice touch. See the sample screen shot below.
Check out all of the details and find out how to post some of your own project shots by visiting this PHOTOBLOG web page.
Creativity and inspiration are fickle muses. I have written as a hobby via blogs for a number of years and I wrote (with my wife) professionally for three years or so as weekly columnists for a major newspaper in central New Jersey. There were times, when I sat at the computer and magic happened; words, phrases and ideas flew from my mind to my finger tips and I could fashion a wonderful story in no time at all.
There were other times, when I would struggle to construct an enticing opening paragraph. I find the same scenario with my photography. It is only a hobby, but it is an important one. I follow many photographers via the Internet. I listen to podcasts and take part in various webinars. I am currently working on a personal project, A Year of Yosemite, where I am writing about 365 photographs I took during my week (+/-) of hiking there. It was wonderful, exciting and amazing! The spirits of Ansel Adams and John Muir were omnipresent.
So…where can we find inspiration as photographers? You know, those times when our cameras sit in their bags for days on end and we don’t feel inspired to pick it up and go out to shoot. In the video below, Art Wolfe talks about his avenues of inspiration and the different views he brings to his photographic craft. Although he is very modest, Art Wolfe is an acclaimed photographer. His training and education as an artist enables him to distill visual themes which help him create bodies of work that I found very stimulating.
I encourage anyone interested in art or photography to watch this YouTube video and perhaps watch it again. I thoroughly enjoyed it on several levels. It will certainly serve as a source of inspiration and motivation for my own photographic journey.
Where do you find photographic inspiration?
Art Wolfe: “The Art of the Image” -Talks at Google