Outside the rain rattles against the usual grain of summer sun and it is now that I can finally sit down with a cup of tea and a Heavenly Crescent and have time and space for reflection of the year passed. While a little tumultuous at times, a little bit “what the f am I doing and why”, 2011 hasn’t been without high points, good laughs and cool ideas.
Having learnt more the previous year from my own mistakes, this year has brought more proactive, sought-out learning- sharing knowledge with other photographers locally and nationally, finding brilliant people to work with on new projects, and talking with other creatively minded people who inspire me.
Teaching tertiary students, while admittedly daunting at first, has been a completely rewarding experience. It has opened up a whole new avenue through which I have been fortunate enough to share some of what I have learnt along the way, meanwhile testing my own photographic knowledge.
What seems the biggest hurdle of the last twelve months is perhaps the difficultly in defining or even recognising myself as fitting into either category as ‘Photographer’ or ‘Artist.’ I still want to pour everything into projects that are engaging on an artistic level, and I still want to work with commercially minded people to make things that are visually compelling.
I have been able to do both for the most part; letting go of part time work that is stable but mostly unrelated creatively (making coffee) in order to build a balance of teaching photography, freelance photography and working on small art projects.
I guess the notion that it has to be either/or will always be there, and I welcome the challenge of working across areas of art and commerce, with the belief that each can lend itself to the other.
So it is with open-mindedness and positivity that I welcome the uncertainty that 2012 brings. Like other photographers or creative people out there I’m sure the pressure to re-imagine, to pay the bills, to satisfy your heart and mind will prevail. Though surely wherever you are- whatever you’re doing, as long as you throw yourself into it, prepared to listen and learn and give it everything you‘ve got- you can make something of it.