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Riding the Wave

ridingwaveSo, I can remember the exact turn of events that got me to here. It was really hot this past summer, I couldn’t keep my garden alive no matter how much I watered, my flowers died miserable deaths, I would need a shower after ten minutes shooting macro outside. The kids got so restless at the end of summer and then it was non stop back to school shenanigans for three kids at three different schools all while Michael was 18 credits deep in summer classes. And and and. The list just keeps on going. And once the kids started full school time I was so burnt out physically and creatively.

I had just finished writing a 250 page workshop and was newly pregnant and wanting to punch whoever coined the term “morning” sickness in the throat. All day sickness. Feeling like a sailor sickness. I’m not cooking dinner for the 5th day in a row so you’re getting take out sickness.

Slowly the Facebook reach numbers started dropping and then they got to an all time low. And I am involved with a few reach groups, sure I could post there and try and boost a few posts, and I could post and complain and ask everyone to engage, OR, I could just ride it out.

You can google a dozen or more posts on what to do when you’re in a rut. Shoot more. Stop shooting. Buy new stuff. Don’t buy new stuff. Look at others for inspiration. Never look at others for inspiration. Take a workshop. Don’t take a workshop, you fell off the wagon last time and don’t want to waste any more money.

There isn’t a magic pill.

From last summer until now I have felt like I was just going through the motions. Shooting daily. Capturing. Documenting. But only a few have been images that have felt inspiring. It’s so hard after finishing up PRO applications and feeling like I was on fire. I spent 7 months shooting for my portfolio and about 70% of my favorite images are still in that pile, almost a year old now.

RL2_1130-EditzSo, while riding the wave void of creativity, what are some things that may help?

Shoot anyways. If you’re not in the habit of shooting you’re going to miss the moments that are stellar even if you are feeling lack luster.

Read. There are so many great photography books. Visually inspiring ones. Educational. Heart warming. Grab yourself a good coffee table book to thumb through.

Review your work. Just because you’re going through a rut doesn’t mean all your work is shit. Remember the good times!

Commiserate. Find a good of photography friends to keep you shooting or just chit chat.

And just the standard, Hope like hell your creativity returns.

RL2_1303zBut when you do get that wonderful image out of thousands. Dance your ass off and enjoy that moment. And get back on the wave and see where the next one takes you.

XX Happy Shooting

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