AAAAAAARRRGGGGGgggg...... Ok, glad we got that out of the way. Now we can take a deep breath and realize that everything is going to be ok. In fact, it's gonna be awesome. You see friends, I was having some major internal struggles with this image, and by internal I mean in my brain space. I've been thinking lately about how a lot of the "fine art photography world" is starting to sludge together. At a glance, much of the work being churned out looks rather repetitive. Obviously there are some wild cards, but so many artists are doing the same types of shoots. It's like every picture seems to be of a pretty girl wearing a flow-y gown flinging her hair in nature. No pointing fingers here, because um, hello, I'm right there with you...Off in the woods, with a beautiful girl, a flowing dress, and flying hair...Crap. Don't get me wrong I LOVE a good hair flip, and how can you not drool over a beautifully "windblown" dress? It's just that I want to be ever changing, growing, and learning. Yet, there I was, sitting at my computer looking at the raw files from this shoot and feeling that it was exactly the same image that's been created a thousand times.
When I shot this image, my intention was to have a girl taking flight with a flock of birds. Or at least jumping as if she was trying to fly with them. Or perhaps they were sweeping her in the air... or something like that. Then, as I sat staring at the files contemplating my concept, it dawned on me.......birds? ....drat...EVERYONE PUTS BIRDS IN THEIR PHOTOS! HELL, I PUT BIRDS IN MY PICTURES!!! EVERYTHING IS THE SAME!!!? WHAAAAAA!?!!!.......Whoa, lost my cool for a second there - let's regroup. What I'm trying to say is that I got down on myself and on this image for not being "creative enough." I was dangerously close to scrapping the picture all together and not even attempting to edit it. I got lost in my head. I was slumped down in my dark office, dwelling on all the wrong things... it was time for a run.
I've become one of those humans (whom I once thought were insane), who goes outside and just runs...on purpose...like, for enjoyment......(what?!). Anyway, I find running to be the absolute perfect way to clear my head, breathe in some fresh air and let my mood reset itself. Also, that running shit is supposed to be super good for you and stuff. Once I reach my stride and my legs go into autopilot, my best thinking always seems to occur. I pondered my image for a good long while, and it finally struck me... who cares? WHO CARES!!?!? I had an idea, I had a vision, and I was going to bring it to life. Why should what anyone else is making stop me from creating this image? I wouldn't have shot it if I didn't want to see the finished product, and I shot it, so dammit all I was going to finish it! My brain went into creative thinking overdrive and suddenly I had all these ideas. I switched from grumbly and upset to energized and imaginative. I was so excited to get back and start editing my masterpiece that I could have just sprinted all the way home...oh wait, yeah, that's exactly what I did.
Ok yes, there are A LOT of birds popping up in many fine art photos all over the internet, but that wasn't going to slow me down one bit. I was going to put a twist on it and make it my own. I WAS GOING TO LIGHT THEM UP! The image I had originally seen in my head took on a whole new light. (See what I did there, eh eh?) How cool would it be if this was not just your ordinary flock of birds, but an etherial, white, glow-y, magical flock of birds bringing life and light into a dark forest. Oh and sparkles, lots of sparkles. Yes, that would do. (Also, fun fact...they are cockatoos, because why not?)
So, what's the moral of this story? GET OUT OF YOUR HEAD! I'm sure you have all been right where I was, spiraling down a dark hole of doubt. Thinking silly thoughts like, "I'm not being creative enough," "This image is just like all my other ones," or "This picture has been done before." Well get over it. Odds are it's most definitely been done before, but not by you. (Unless you did already shoot something like it...in which case I smell a new photo series.)
Perhaps the reason I've been seeing so many images with birds, hair flips, and flowing dresses IS BECAUSE THEY LOOK AWESOME!! Why should the internet be deprived of more awesome? The point is, if you want to create something, just do it. Even if it isn't the most innovative idea ever, it's still going to grease the creative gears for your next work of art. You are only going to learn and get better by doing. So, commit those negative brainwaves to more productive thinking, like, "how can I make this image all the more ME and all the more original" even if it's a subject matter that's been used a lot.
In other news... THIS IMAGE IS OF THE LULU LOVERING! You may not have heard of her (if you suck at life), but she is the most darling, warm, loving, adorable, kind hearted, supportive, energetic, selfless, positive photographer and person to be around...ever. She can meander into a room of the saddest grumpiest grumps and turn it into a party....with confetti. If you ever have the chance to meet this rare creature, jump at that opportunity. She will brighten your day and leave you feeling loved. Not to mention she can go from bouncy giggling and hilarious to HOLY CRAP YOUR FACE IS SO LONGING AND DEEP AND SERIOUS AND PERFECT in no seconds flat. AKA she is such a brilliant model it's not even funny.....ok it's actually a little funny; the way she can transition from the actual Lulu to a stone cold vixen model woman and then right back to quirky lovely Lu. You just have to see it. I seriously can't say enough about what a fine person Lulu is. <3