Do you fuel your fire or let it go out?
Today I went with a friend to shoot the sunrise. I know this lake fairly well and know how few places there are with compelling or even just plain usable foreground elements. It’s always a tough shoot unless you have a lot of time or have scouted beforehand. With my friend’s back being very painful, I knew we couldn’t walk far from the parking lot and I hoped against hope I’d find something, but doubted I would.
What an attitude huh? I’d practically given up before I’d even started. Whatta dope.
It got worse. I actually took the filter holder off my camera and put the whole rig away! I stood around chatting with Denise about how I wasn’t feeling it. She was moving around and trying things. What the hell was I doing? Being an idiot.
So I decided that was stupid and went off hunting. Down by the foundation of an old boathouse I found something…not quite in time for the pre-dawn light, but in time to catch the sun as it crested and lit up the reeds in the foreground. I was thrilled to find that crack in the ice, too. It won’t win any awards, but it isn’t crap either. Finding it made the whole morning worth it and I felt instantly better. Suddenly I was a photographer again.
I’m glad I made the effort. I wasn’t feeling it when I got to the location, but neither was I trying to feel it. I wasn’t fueling my fire, I was letting it die. Some photographer, huh? How many times have you been tempted to give in and stop shooting when you get on location? Do you work your way through it or do you tell yourself you’re being a discerning photographer and not wasting your time? Attitude and expectations are everything on some shoots. Don’t give up. Go hunting. Stay engaged. Look around. Fuel your fire!