Just Be You
Everyone’s journey and photography is different (and that’s ok)
“It’s your road, and yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you.” - Rumi
I got my first camera 7 years ago and my photography journey began roughly 2 years after that - for some that’s a long time, and for others I’m still in nappies.
Well there was about 18 months in between then and when I headed out on my own and started my second life. You see, if you don’t already know, I lost my husband after a short illness at the end of March 2016. I knew I had to keep living and the way I chose to do that initially was to do short road trips on my own, and somehow having my camera with me made me feel less alone.
And so the journey began …
Before long I attended a number of workshops and tours - varying from a few hours each to 5 day workshops far from home - for me that included the South Coast NSW, Tasmania and New Zealand. For the more local workshops it obviously included the Central Coast, but also various locations in Sydney and surrounds (think Canberra, Port Stephens and the Blue Mountains).
Because it became such an obsession for me (and a way to begin my second life), I’ve followed, idolised and learned from so many different photographers that it can get confusing - what kind of photographer am I, do I need to stick to just one genre, and what is my style?
And that’s ok…
I’ve gone through the I must be like that, see like that, edit like that, be the intrepid explorer and to be different and find my own style. To be honest I don’t think I’ll ever decide.
And that’s ok …
I finally feel that I’m getting to a point that I’m just living my life and following my own journey - generally I’m a loner that does enjoy company at times - it’s all about balance right!?!. I do love doing my solo trips but at the same time enjoy travelling with others and doing photo tours in groups or with a friend or two.
And that’s ok …
Do I have it all figured out? Absolutely not - I just sat down to have dinner while I was drafting this post and realised I had no cutlery … let’s just agree to say no more about that.
I am not a photographer that is going to change the world with my photos, or do anything incredibly different or mind blowing, and I’m ok with that.
Having said that, in 2021 I decided to start entering photography competitions to further improve my skills. I am honoured to share that I received 2 Highly Commended in the worldwide Chromatic Photo Awards, and a Gold in the World Nature Photography Awards.
What I will say is that I do think I take some pretty nice photos that I’m happy with and want to share with the world. Just goes to show we are all complex creatures.
I also want to share so that others can have them in their world because they resonate with them for whatever reason, and they make their space just that bit more beautiful and relaxing for them. That is why I have made some of my photos available for sale.
Anyhoo, where was I going with this?
Oh that’s right, back to being you - following your own journey and loving what you do.
I started this blog to record and share my journey to hopefully inspire others who have been through struggles to also get out there and find what brings them joy.
Yes, I do most things on my own, but I don’t take unnecessary risks - I travel alone, but choose motels or cabins that mostly make me feel safe and comfortable. The increasingly new world of self-sufficient travelling (think camping and motorhomes) may be wonderful, but it’s not for me - maybe it is for you?
And that’s ok …
I don’t want or need to chase every sunrise and sunset while I’m on my own - I pick and choose those that I wish to, and those that I also feel safe and comfortable doing on my own. It’s also a holiday so I purposely set aside enough time in my schedule for down time.
My fitness also isn’t what it could be, so that influences what and where I choose to photograph along the way. To be honest though, I do push myself more when in a group rather than on my own when it’s easier to opt out, so there is that.
A term I’ve come to embrace is ‘Travelography’. I love my photography and while most ‘landscape’ photographers will only shoot at sunrise or sunset, there’s a lot to be said for photographing where you are, when you are with what you have.
I do take my photography (and travel) seriously, but at the end of the day it’s all about getting out and about and doing what you can - whatever that means for you.
Photography and travel (solo travel or joining in with others at times) is what I’m grateful to have in my life. I truly hope you can find joy in whatever way in your world.
Oh, and when I am home there’s always my girls for company - trust me they really don’t like it when I disappear for days on end.
Do what it is that works for you and makes you happy - I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.
That’s it for now - Keep clicking and stay caffeinated
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Note - This post does not contain any sponsored or affiliated links. All suggestions and opinions are mine. Unless otherwise stated, all photos are mine and remain my copyright images - Sam Wilson Photography.