Photography, My Way to Escape Reality
This may sound like a sad story but it is not, it is called life! It is something we learn and live with from an early age. I like to photograph it and have people see my life through my eyes!
I started taking photos when I was 13 or 14 on my mom’s old Kodak Brownie using 220 film. A kinda point and shoot. It wasn’t until collage in 1971 that I got my first 35mm, a used Leica M5. Fun camera but I could never get a good shot out of it. I was still learning.
I got my first SLR in 1974 and was hooked. It was a Konica (Now Minolta). Unfortunate while canoeing White River it was lost. In 1980 I picked up a Canon A-1 and three lenses while working in the United Arab Emirates. I toted that camera all over Europe and the United States. I taught myself how to use it by reading a lot of books. Loved that camera until it broke and was going to be expensive to fix. I always wanted a Nikon so I bought an N-70 and a couple of lenses. What a piece of junk!
I am a frustrated artist, like most I guess and I could never capture a scene and depict how it makes me feel. In 2006 I lost my muse! It was then I lost all interest in my art. I stopped painting, making jewelry, and worst of all I stopped using my camera. I loved my wife dearly and when she passed I dug a big hole and crawled into it. It was my father-in-law and my sister who dug me out. Both of them are very good artists in their own right and knew I needed a distraction. So I picked one of my hobbies and moved on. I bought a Nikon D-80 and the rest is history.
In 2008, the good Lord gave me a new muse and three wonderful grandchildren. I celebrated with a new camera, a D-90. I love shooting kids. I do not like to pose them, I let them be themselves and shoot at their level. What an inspiration they are. Now I see life through their eyes!
I decided to retire Nov 2011. My wife retired in Feb 2012. We planned to travel and I could show her the places I have seen. Three days after her retirement, I was dealt another blow. I found out I have cancer. This time my faith and family kept me focused and after a few sad days I told myself it is what it is and started my fight.
What happened to my photography, it made me look at my surroundings with new eyes. I focus on the beauty I see and take my time to achieve the proper composition and artistic beauty. As a result I take less shots.
What have I learned in my 50 or so years, there is no bad photograph. There is only the artistic expression of the photographer. Like I said, this is not a sad story, it is just a story of life! Photography is a way for all of us to escape reality. My wife even set up a facebook page for my family and friends to follow my escape!! Keep shooting my friends and enjoy life!