Thursday, January 6, 2011

Through the Glass Darkly

I am finally getting a chance to focus on my imagery.   It feels like focus has always been an issue with me.   Those that know me will say I am prone to distraction.   I have so much diversity in my life that it seems I have become the master of multi-tasking.   I have so many passions and directions I am drawn, I dabble in a lot of different things and think I am good at whatever it is I take on, but I have a hard time making a commitment to one thing.   I love landscaping and being outside and working in the earth and can actually make money at this, but it’s only seasonal.   I love to cook and create amazing foods, in fact I always wanted to go to cooking school, but could never afford it.  I do not make money at this.  I love theater and the process of collaborative creation.  I did make money at this and found it was the prefect balance of my right brain/left brain activity.   I was very good at it, but didn’t like constantly being on the road and scrambling for work. Recently I did a make over of my studio space; that was actually a takeover, a complete reinvention of the space.  I was able to design it, build it, do all my own wiring, and finish it.   I didn’t realize what a creative process building actually was.   I work for UPS part-time in the evenings and surprisingly love this as well.   I work as the system’s operations manager in the evening.  Bringing the drivers in from their day, linking their data, solving issues that may have come up and closing out their payroll.   It’s far more creative than you would imagine.   It’s a constant challenge and is ever changing and I come up with innovative ways to look at problems and streamlined my process and it becomes a race each evening to see how efficient I can get things done.  I defiantly make money at this. You could say I live and survive on a life of being creative, and to do it in Montana is truly is a feat in and of itself.  To epitomize the core of myself: it would be, to be curious and always explore, to grow and learn, and to challenge myself.

Photography is the greatest challenge for me.  I feel the passion deep within me to express and explore my identity with it.   But it brings a lot of self-doubt.   Do I have what it takes to make a go of it.  It seems like to world is changing and everyone has become a photographer or knows a photographer. Work seems to become more and more scarce, because people can do it themselves and don’t need to hire someone to do it.  The new technology makes everyone capable of taking a decent image and there is so much competition.   I have tried every way possible to get out there.  Thrown lots of money at advertising with a marginal return.  Some times I make money at it, sometimes I don’t, more often don’t, hence the need for all the other distractions that I actually need to sustain myself.  As I get older, it seems to get more complicated and more difficult.  Landscaping takes a greater toll on my body.  I think for most people life gets easier as you get older, for creative people life does not, it’s a constant struggle.   Living in and being from Montana seems to equally have as much challenge.  No one here knows my work and what I do.  I have suppressed what I am really passionate about.   I have been creating all these images that are about to emerge from this project for years in total solitude. Something here; something there; always deconstructing my own life and examining it for truths about my own existence and meaning.  I have lived the life I have always wanted, done the things I have desired, visited the places that captivated me, been fearless.   Well there it is, I am finally getting to the core of what I want and need.

So here it is facing my greatest fear and putting aside all the anxiety and exposing myself for the entire world to see and judge.  Several years back I was diagnosed with Lymphoma and spent a summer under going chemotherapy; it scared the bee-jesus out of me and put my life into hyper-drive to overachieve, to find meaning.   Suddenly, last fall I began realized I needed to stop and focus.  I now know photography needs to be my focus because it has the greatest meaning to me.  I know this is going to be a painful process for me.  I know I am going to have to sacrifice to see this though.  The concept of this project is going to be my greatest challenge.  This is what I have always wanted, time will only tell if I am actually any good at it or not, but it’s time to go for the brass ring.   It’s time to reach for what has always seemed unobtainable and hopefully get recognized and actually make a living doing this type of work.   I am facing my fears of rejection and self-denial to put it all on the line. I give myself one year to make it all happen.


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