I agree with this philosophy of learning, but it can be gut-wrenching to expose my work to critique. This is where my photography book club comes into play. I envision a group of trusted friends who will give honest responses about my photographs, providing the objectivity that I might lack.
I’m working my way through Lesson Three of Zen Camera. I confess to procrastination on the reading and the exercises, but the minute I begin, I feel better. This is time well spent. And my book club is set to meet just after Christmas.
Lesson Three is on identity. Start close to home. Tell the stories you know.
I love this line from Rumi because it feels like permission to be myself.
I tell people that I make images in and around my home because our budget is limited and exotic travels are not possible. But, when I consider what I love carefully, I can see that I would photograph those simple and ordinary moments of life no matter where I might travel.
I am often the least interested in the grandest and most obvious elements of any scene or adventure, and most drawn to the details and sincerity of the commonplace. It is the very notion that we are connected in our humanity by sameness—our bodies, the way we gather to eat and drink, cooking, growing and harvesting, walking in nature—that drives my photography.
It feels right to follow my natural enthusiasm and make pictures like these. Coffee brewed in a French press, rich with cream, a match made in heaven.
Prepared with great care and shared with the one I love.