Do You Feel Old?
“I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship.”
—Louisa May Alcott
In my previous post, I challenged myself to kickoff a new era in my life. The recent goal I set for myself was to re-ignite my interest in photography. Let me just say I FEEL OLD. I know I’m not, but sometimes I feel it. Learning is much harder now. My mind doesn’t hold on to details anymore. Instead of a steel trap, I’ve got a squeaky old screen door with a tired spring. It swings open all the time. letting the dog out. Leonardo da Vinci said that “…learning never exhausts the mind…” I want what he’s smoking. However, he also said, “The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding.”
In order to learn, you must seek knowledge. Which brings me to tutorials. It takes much more time to find the right tutorial than it does to watch it. YouTube is a great resource, until you realize halfway through the video they’re just making it up as they go. It’s particularly difficult to find genuine beginner tutorials. There’s almost always an assumption of basic knowledge in whatever subject of tutorial you’re attempting to be, you know, tutored.
The Fruits of My Labor
Charlie is our 4 year old Rat Terrier who’s obsessed with playing fetch. I thought it might make for some good photos. With the help of my grandson, Oliver, I was able to get some pretty good shots. The lessons I’m tackling following photos are shutter speed, (motion) and aperture (depth of field).
I attended my granddaughter, Abbey’s high school football game. We WON 26-7! I took the opportunity to practice, practice, practice. In case you hadn’t guessed she is in the marching band. I’m not proud at all.
Having been blessed with an obsessive, compulsive personality, I decided that before I could really take my photography seriously I must–while wringing my hands with villainous joy–go shopping. Among the new items: a new lens, which, considering most of the game shots were taken from the bleachers, I now feel completely justified in purchasing, a new case (to accommodate the new lens), a monopod (basically a one-legged tripod), monopod head, and a new bag in which to carry all my new goodies. I should be commended on my not inconsiderable restraint. Believe me when I say, I could have acquired much, much, more.
I’ve enjoyed learning and practicing, squeaky screen door notwithstanding. Even though it’s been more of a challenge than it might’ve been when I was younger, I’m more determined than I used to be. And I’ll be damned if it hasn’t been more fun.
As rewarding as knowledge can be, learning can be frustrating and discouraging. Then throw real life on top of it, well… We’ve all felt loss of purpose and the agony of defeat. Inadequacy… unequal to the task. Needing encouragement and not finding any. I’m not gonna lie, I’ve struggled over the past few weeks. I’ve hit a lot of brick walls and came close to giving up on the photography AND the blog.
However, to my surprise, I’ve stumbled upon an blessing maturity has afforded me. Patience. Ok, not a lot… but enough to allow myself to step back and see the big picture in order to refocus and somehow muster the courage to try again.
This journey began with a basic desire to not feel useless. I find I’m discovering so much more.
Thank you so much for visiting and please tell me about your challenges, projects or anything else you want to share.
Original post: September 2015