Routine is the killer.
I kind of knew that before. I said back in June that part of my problem with photography lately is that I’m stuck in a bit of a pattern right now: I go to the same places over and over, at roughly the same time of day, travelling the same routes. I’m not seeing anything new, and that’s made it hard to see photographs I haven’t already taken.
But this week confirmed it. I finally broke out of that pattern and did something a little bit different, and started feeling inspired again. (‘Started’ being the key word, there.)
Every month, I share the articles and sites that I found most interesting. Here’s what caught my attention in August: on research, learning to love rejection, Art Spiegelman on golden age superheroes, and more.
I ended last month’s creative review by wondering if it might be time for a reset. I knew I had to figure out some stuff with how I manage my time, and I had to figure out what I was going to do about Violet Lane. From a technical standpoint, I was happy with the photos I’d been taking, but from a creative standpoint, I was getting bored.
I must have forgotten about all that as soon as I wrote it, because when I sat down to write today’s review, I was sure that this funk I’m in has only been a couple of weeks. Not a couple of months.
I’ll start with the good news, because there is good news. I’ve figured out what I’m doing with Violet Lane.
1. starting… work on that dress I’ve been meaning to make forever.
2. trying… to kick my motivation back into gear. I’ve been in a bit of a funk the last few weeks, and I’m not sure why.
3. making… the year’s first batch of ice cream. At the end of August. It’s been a weird summer.
4. forgetting… what a nightmare some stores are right now, with back-to-school season coming up. I just wanted to look at pens.
5. spending… six and a half hours in the emergency room. I’m ok! Just had a bit of a scare and needed a bunch of tests. They all came back good. (And I’m incredibly grateful for the Canadian health care system right now.)
6. reevaluating… a few things.
7. finding… a reusable cup for iced coffee that fits in my bag! I’ve been looking for ages. (This is the one, if you’re facing the same dilemma. The silicone feels a little precarious when it’s full, but it works just fine so far.)
8. wishing… the cat would stop waking me up in the middle of the night.
9. exploring… a part of town that I haven’t visited in years. It’s changed a lot, and it’s kind of fantastic.
10. hoping… that next week is better than the last two have been.
Let’s just pretend that I didn’t fall behind on this group of photos, ok? (I’m officially caught up as of this evening. I won’t say that I’ll try not to do it again, because we all know how that’ll work out.)
Let’s just focus on the butterfly. I’m absurdly proud of the butterfly photo.
I’m finally starting to break out of the all-flowers-all-the-time photography rut! And I’m a little bit in love with a couple of these photos.
Pretty good, considering I was stuck inside for a few of these days, and I relied on my phone for a few more.
1. trying… a new notebook setup.
2. making… an actual plan to try some of the (literal) hundreds of recipes I’ve got saved.
3. catching… another summer cold. I am having the worst luck with that this year.
4. worrying… that I’m about to become one of those insufferable Instagram ‘plant parents.’
5. going… back to the drawing board with Violet Lane.
6. missing… the merlins. They didn’t come back this year, which is sad—I loved watching them—but it does mean that the juncos have been hanging around more. They’re fun, too.
7. watching… some fantastically inspiring movies.
8. buying… a raincoat. I’ve needed a new one—or any water-resistant jacket with a hood, really—for years, but it’s taken me this long to find one I don’t hate.
9. seeing… a few connections I was missing before.
10. waiting… for a couple of very cool deliveries. (And they—mostly—arrived on time!)
If nothing else, this week has been a reminder that I really need to invest in a new camera. I’ve resisted for a long time—I loathe the wastefulness of replacing technology before I absolutely have to, and my DSLR is still serving me well. I started on film SLRs (well, I started on a cheap plastic 110, which I got as a prize for selling the most wrapping paper at an elementary school fundraiser, but I eventually moved on to real SLRs), and I still like the feeling of a real viewfinder better than looking at a screen. Switching to mirrorless doesn’t really appeal to me, even if I do sigh over how beautiful some of the cameras themselves are. (I’m shallow. I know.)
Plus, I’ve got a weird tendency to get emotionally attached to things like cameras and computers. Even when they do eventually fail, it takes me a while to move on.