Category Archives: personal
Hi everyone, just a quick post to say sorry about the lack of posts here lately! I’ve been laid up with a bout of labyrinthitis (otherwise known as The Ear Virus From Hell). Thankfully with some TLC from my family I’m much better now and am slowly returning to normal.
I wanted to make this a long post, about the challenges many of us have been facing throughout 2012, but I’ve been sitting in front of the computer for two hours now and it’s just not happening, my brain is still addled! Instead I’ll save those thoughts for a later post, and just share these two photos I managed to take on an icy morning in Tipperary. I love when the weather gets colder, photo walks through frosty dawns are always enchanting :)
I hope that all of you are enjoying the run up to the holidays!
I’ve spotted these little purple flowers growing in a variety of places across the countryside. They’re usually blossoming humbly beneath the shade of leafy trees, or adorning the nooks and crannies of stone walls. I love them, but I’ve no idea what they’re called – do any of you know?
Lately the future is on my mind. I’m considering going back to college again. I want to learn more about photography and am beginning to feel like there’s only a certain amount I can learn myself. I’d love a broader knowledge about the whole subject, like history, theory and context. I’d also like to learn a lot more about the technical stuff.
I do fine figuring things out on the camera and Photoshop myself, but I want to be better, you know? Take more considered images, begin to use my camera with greater intent. I’d like to learn what it means to be a professional. And if I ever consider turning professional myself, I’d like to know that I’m creating really good quality work first. I want it to be work that I’d pay for myself, and I’m picky!
Studying again will be time consuming, and expensive. It’s a big decision to make, and I’m really just beginning to consider it. If any of you have studied photography in college I’d appreciate a comment with your thoughts below, or get in touch through email. It’d be helpful to hear from photographers who went down that route. I’m asking as many people as I can, every opinion helps in the decision making process!
Tomorrow I’m heading to the country to be with my family for a couple of days. I have a dawn photowalk planned, so I hope to have some new images to share on here very soon. Have a great weekend!
Earlier this week my sister Aisling, who blogs about her quilting business over at Bazaar, mentioned something on Facebook that resonated deeply with me. She had come across an image on Pinterest that read “If your dreams don’t scare you then they’re not big enough” – a quote that’s popping up online quite a bit recently – and was struck by the amount of pressure we put ourselves under these days. Pressure to achieve impressive heights of success, to have dreams that are unique, quirky and trendsetting, to inspire others with the way we live our own lives.
While I love inspirational words and graphics – I have a Pinboard devoted to them – Aisling has an important point. A quote like that can motivate, or it can increase the pressure. What’s wrong with having ordinary dreams? Ones that don’t scare, but instead encourage us to move forward with our lives in small and satisfying ways. One of my big dreams is to have a garden someday. There’s nothing remotely scary about that, but it’s something I know will add to my personal happiness. It pushes me to make the changes in my life that will enable me to have that garden, but it’s not something that I’m afraid to go out there and achieve; dreams don’t always work like that.
In the last decade the online world of blogging and creativity has exploded. The amount of innovative and talented people adding their voices to the blogosphere is staggering. I’ve said this before, but I find myself constantly in awe and delighted at all the talent out there, and at the willingness of so many creative people to share their work and artistic knowledge. Reading through my feeds each day is inspiring.
But in the middle of this creative sharing culture, it can be easy to feel like you’re floundering. There are literally over a million blog posts published each day. With blog after beautiful blog to browse through it can become overwhelming. If your self confidence isn’t sturdy it’s easy to lose yourself in envy, hopelessness and competition. And which of us hasn’t felt like that at some point? It happens, we’re human, we want more, want to be more.
The quote that Aisling spotted is representative of this flip side of our creative culture, of the pressure we place upon ourselves to keep up, to be more, to present a sophisticated life and art to our readers. Ez of Creature Comforts wrote a blog post about this recently. Her honesty and bravery is touching, and has inspired many other bloggers to follow suit and begin being more open and honest with their own readers. It’s encouraging to see others start taking part in a conversation about it. It sets us free to be ourselves.
What I want to say is this: if your dreams are big enough for you, then they’re big enough.
Don’t get caught up in the anxiety of a culture that can push us to be more than we want to be. Learn to be comfortable with yourself. The key is to focus on you instead of on others. Ask yourself ‘what do I really want from life’ and ‘what do I want my blog to represent?’. Your readers will appreciate an honest approach, and it’s far more satisfying than feeling you’re just trying to keep up.
We don’t need dreams that scare us – they’re called nightmares – we need dreams that reflect who we are, and what life honestly means to us. We need dreams that excite and propel us forward. Sure, some of them will be daunting, but if we’re dreaming big because we think we’re supposed to, then it’s time to reevaluate.
Dream big enough for you, that’s all the dreaming you need to do.