Creative: Lack Thereof

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Time is a real issue. I was explaining to someone earlier today that I feel lucky to be in the tiny percentage of human beings who have real options in life. This is due to a variety of factors. Work, luck, skill maybe. Focus, intention and purpose for sure. But I’m very, very fortunate.

Cliche alert. “Time waits for no man/woman.” This one stings because it’s impossible to deny. Time is like The Terminator, always hunting, “and it will not stop until you are DEAD.” (Cue shotgun blast.) Time is maybe the single most challenging aspect of my current “predicament.” Predicament you ask? Who me? I often have to make things quicker than I like. Time and access, as a photographer, are the two elements of great photography that can rarely be worked around. Without them, in short, we suffer.

Now, I make things for all sorts of reasons. In many cases I’m making something to show the process of making it more so than the actual final product. My magazine is a good example of this. My advice, don’t buy my magazine, make your own. But I also still try to make things that are mine. And I try to make them great. Most of the time they aren’t great, but I at least put in the effort. The rub is where you know the potential for great is there and you simply don’t have time to find it. That’s where I am now with my latest project.

This project haunts me in the background of my daily life. I look at the calendar, and my duties, and I see my connection with the story getting further and further away. I know what kind of time it will take for me to really make this story mine. A lot of field time still required. And a lot of writing time. Someone said to me yesterday, “Oh, you had three hours of alone time, wow, that’s fantastic.” Well, and it kinda is, but that isn’t NEARLY enough time to even push out the noise of daily life while truly engaging with whatever you need to engage with. This is why SO much of what we see is banal, average, formulaic. It’s become accepted practice for the 96% of creatives working today. Thank God for the 4% who shun this and make all the best shit.

I sit here charging no less than six devices on six different outlets. Tomorrow is another day on the road. Today a day of planning, writing, creating interview notes and also managing an event for someone else. Never enough.

Comments 4

  1. I hear you!
    Oh I wish I was an Octopus and could do many things at the same time… Haha!
    But no!
    Being a photographer, a teacher for Apple products and father of a three years old boy keeps me busy. Always trying to find a balance between spending time with my personal projects and doing jobs to get money. But most important spending precious time with my son and girl.
    It’s a challenge!
    So enough I have no time to write more!

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  2. Time the great equalizer. I’ve transformed my creative pursuits to align with family. As a new dad to an 18 month old, much of my photography surrounds documenting my family, from the mundane to the milestones and all points in between. Shoot, edit, share, print. I guess my long term project is my greatest creation and the only audience that matters…my family.

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      One of the most important things you can do in my opinion. Never gets a lot of credit but critical. Look at what Paul Gero does documenting his family. That’s the bar in my mind.

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