|published in the Chronicle Herald (The Nova Scotian section) - August 29, 2016
The truth is, we all start out that way but somehow we lose that as we age and as time goes on some of us become more inhibited than when we started.
If an adult hears music and starts to dance, usually the reaction isn’t the same. People seem embarrassed, or think there’s a screw loose somewhere.
Sometime along the path of life we are discouraged from public displays of joy and happiness. Maybe it’s an adult telling us to behave, maybe it’s the school system that regiments us away from being individuals, or maybe it’s because a peer makes fun of us.
If our love of photography develops into a more serious pass time, we might take a course or join a club. Then we learn the "rules" of photography. We might stop taking photos because it’s the wrong time of day for the best light, or we think no one else is interested in the same subject matter as us, or we’re just tired of going to the same locations all the time. The introduction of rules might constrict our free flowing creativity if we become slaves to them. We may lose that sense of joy and wonder that we had when we became interested in the hobby in the first place.
I hit that wall a couple of years ago and lost the feeling that photography used to give me. I wasn’t interested in taking photographs and I stopped carrying my camera when we went daytripping and when we got together with family. Then a quick visit with some friends kick started my creative juices again. We dropped by to pick up home grown garlic, and we were shown some decorative gourds. Those gourds mesmerized me. They looked like long necked birds to me and I started visualizing them as a family. We took home three gourds with our garlic and I immediately set up my camera for a photo shoot.
Now, I’m not suggesting that everyone who gets in a rut should run out and find themselves some gourds. But I am recommending that you follow your instincts. If something interests you, go for it. Forget about the rules of convention. Find something that sparks your interest and take a leap of faith.
Dance like no one’s watching. Sing like no one’s listening. And choose your own thing to focus on.