As I've grown and become better at dealing with life's less-than-stellar moments, I've strayed away from uploading to Flickr in that way. But it's amazing to me to look back at each of those photos. To this day, I can tell you what each one represents. I can feel what I was feeling in the moment I uploaded it. I could probably even tell you how I came up with the composition or what was going on the day I took it. To be able to look back on all of that and see where I am now is so encouraging. If you want to see what I'm talking about, you can check it out here.
Photography means more to me than any amount of views, sales, awards, or jobs. Ten years later, I still get that same feeling I got when I took that photo of the marigold, and I hope that never goes away. But I'm not worried about that. Photography is my thing.
My early photography was supported by the words of others, so it seems fitting to include some of the most influential quotes I've come across. Robert Hayden said, "Art is not escape, but a way of finding order in chaos, a way of confronting life." And I couldn't agree more. Asher Roth said, "Do your thing. Do it every day. Do it 'unapologetically'. Don’t be discouraged by criticism. You probably already know what they’re going to say. Pay no mind to the fear of failure. It’s far more valuable than success. Take ownership, take chances and have fun. And no matter what, don’t ever stop doing your thing." Between the two of them, they sum up my approach to photography pretty well.
Thanks for an incredible first ten years of practicing my art. And thank you for encouraging me to "do my thing" even when you had no idea just how much it meant to me.