I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing most of the time. I was asked the other day how I get my pictures to look a certain way. I couldn’t give close to the answer the asker or myself really wanted. I have next to no idea what I’m doing. I’m okay with that. I’m also not okay with that. I know what I like doing. I know why I like doing it. I know I’ll keep doing it until I don’t want to do it anymore. I know my camera pretty well and I know the effect of the handful of Lightroom sliders I use. The deep, underlying qualities of the camera settings and sliders though – nope.
I’ve been trying to find better ways to organise my time and prioritise in the last couple of months. I haven’t made a great deal of progress in terms of tasks completed. I have made solid progress in how I feel about that though.
All of my photos have people in them. I like taking photos of people so it makes sense to me. Lately though, I’ve been trying to take more pictures without people in them. Not that I’m avoiding shooting people. I just want to broaden my horizons a little.
Like a lot of foreigners living in Tokyo, I make my living teaching English. Not a career I ever particularly expected to be in at this time of my life, but one I enjoy none the less. A big part of that enjoyment is that I like the way language works. I like the little rules of grammar and pronunciation. I like the way moving your tongue or using your voice gives you different sounds. I love phonemic script. But I’m also a big fan of the photographer’s collocation of choice: to make a photo.
I went into Shinjuku today for my Monday photo walk / mental recharge. On the train I felt a little down and distracted and couldn’t wait to get outside and just shoot for a couple of hours. After arriving, the better part of the next two hours was spent taking photos that made me want to throw my camera under the next passing train. After that, I felt refreshed and ready for the work week to recommence. I’m grateful for days like today. I enjoy the never ending process that is making things.
A major contributing factor to my photography adventure so far has been that it can be done entirely alone. When I was younger, playing football or playing in bands, I needed other people. I never really enjoyed playing music by myself and I was certainly never good enough to write anything of my own.
I’ve always wanted the perfect ‘workflow’ and I think I’m finally edging towards what works best for me. Over the last two years it’s changed so many times I couldn’t have told you where anything was. At the start of January this year it involved a camera, laptop, iPad, iPhone, Lightroom, Lightroom Mobile, and Flickr. My Lightroom had around 30 collections and a total 9000 photos. I’m not even sure how to explain what was going on every time I plugged in my SD card.