While booking clients this week, I've actually been going through a lot of my portfolio in order to show examples of potential locations or examples of shooting at different times of the day. In pulling up those examples I was reminded of my artistic point of view. Having a point of view is very important as a photographer, because it allows your clients to know why they want to hire you. Typically the most successful photographers or artists tend to stick to a certain category or style, & I know this is something that I've struggled with over the years because I haven't really stuck to say wedding photography, family photography, sports, live concerts or landscapes. My problem is, I LOVE it all.
So what is my point of view? Looking through my portfolio, as silly as it may sound, the common theme was happiness & light. No matter the subject, you can find that I'm always looking for the joy I can capture through a moment in time. May that be through smiles, or the way that the light passes through the image, I'm seeking to find that frame that will give you a sense of warmth & delight.
This past Sunday we lost an American icon that had that same sort of passion of sharing joy through their art. Jerry Lewis was definitely one of my childhood heroes & many hours of laughter were shared in my home through watching his films. Although I never expect my art to come anywhere close to reaching the audience he had, I truley hope that I can mimic his versatility as an artist & that I can in the same way create images & films that make people smile.
This past week I had the chance to shoot some photos with my bike team. These themes of light & laughter were again found, & it made me feel good to see smiles on people's faces as we enjoyed this time out in the California sunshine. Although the daily grind can be arduous at times, we have that privilege of being able to take that time-out away from responsibility & escape to the trails.
Now to discuss the "FOMO" topic. For those that aren't familiar with the acronym, it stands for, "Fear Of Missing Out". If there's one thing about being a creative it's the fact that in order to create your art, you have to take the opportunity to make it, & sometimes that can also mean making sacrifices. For example, the photos of my bike team that I captured this week. I've seen how beautiful it is when we ride, and I've wanted to take pictures out on the trails with more than just an iPhone for some time. However, this means I had to plan on what gear to bring, how to pack it for riding, and it ultimately meant that I wouldn't get to ride as much, that my buddies may have to wait for me to get ahead on the trails to set up some shots, & I would also be risking the fact that I could damage my equipment had I crashed while carrying it. In the end I was happy I did it, but it was something that I had to give a little extra thought to & my "FOMO" was definitely a driving factor to take the risk to create the art.
This past week some friends of mine drove out to locations that were in the line of totality for the solar eclipse. Having young children & the fact that the locations that were optimal for viewing this phenomenon were several states away, kept me from venturing out to join in the fun. I did however try to make the most of what we could see here in San Diego, & I went up to Mt Laguna to attempt some photographs with some different texture. I think I definitely could have made some more unique plans, but this event just didn't seem to capture my attention enough to make a stronger effort.
Now for some honesty. I definitely found myself with a slight sense of jealousy for my single or childless friends that were able to travel for the solar eclipse, & I often find myself wanting to take the chance to be a part of as many things as possible. This is both a good & bad thing. I feel that a healthy sense of adventure & a desire to experience life to the fullest is a great goal in life, but I also know that it is very important to have balance & that we can tend to be greedy. I hope that I can instill that sense of adventure in my kids, but I also have to be cautious in this day in age that I'm not encouraging a sense of entitlement & kids who easily get bored.
I had a conversation with a friend last week about how we're "old millenials". It's kind of funny to be grouped in with kids that are still in high school, when you already have kids, two cars, a mortgage, & a retirement plan. But I definitely see how my generation has similarities to people over a decade and a half younger than us. I mean, I'm writing a blog, I'm sharing photos & videos on social media, and this "FOMO" attitude is something that previous generations experienced, but not on the level that we do today.
As a creative, I honestly see the world in picture frames. It's an odd thing, but I view the world through little 3x2 rectangles. Constantly noticing art through everyday life, & the ability to capture these moments, especially the ones with my kids is extremely hard to just sit back and enjoy. This last week my buddy Daniel invited me to participate in his weekly "Dadurday" adventure & we took our kids out to the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum. Being that it was "Dadurday" I had all 3 of my kids to myself & while I thoroughly enjoyed my time with my kiddos, it was killing me creatively not having enough hands to manage my children & take pictures. The good thing about that, is it made me appreciate my wife even more. The freedom she gives me to be able to be nerdy-dad & capture family moments is something I realized I take for granted, & I really missed the chance to capture those moments that day. The best part though is the fact that there will be another opportunity to head out there with Sara & share the experience we had there with her. I'll be able to create more moments & I need to allow myself to enjoy the times where "photo-dad" is not my role.
Thankfully Daniel captured a couple photos of me that day with my kids. While I didn't get the chance to take the pictures I really wanted to, he was able to capture a couple moments of me with my 3 kids that I can share with you. I love these pictures, & I really love my roles as creative dad, & just plain ol' hand holding dad too 😊