My last year in school I had to write a thesis to graduate. After months of reading, I sat down to actually write it and was a disheartened to find that beautiful prose did not magically flow right out of my pen. (I wrote everything out on sheets of paper before transcribing it on the computer. There’s a similar reason for using film, analog forces you to slow down.) I made myself write entire sentences that were completely repellent to me, just to start writing something. I cringed even as I wrote them out, knowing I’d strike them as soon as I made a first edit, but they were necessary just to get ideas on the page.
I’m at a similar point with photography, and writing this blog too. I’ve done plenty of thinking about photography over the past months, but without a whole lot to show for it. I do have to admit this is somewhat discouraging, but I also know that this is a stage of development. I can’t hope to wake up one morning as a brilliant photographer, but if I do small things to make myself better, I can get there. Maybe while I take these steps, I should continue to publish things, even if I have to cringe when I see them. That way I can see my own progress.
Posting stuff online is different from writing a thesis though, because with the thesis I was the only person to see my errors. Online, you get an invisible, mostly silent audience. I don't have any harsh critics I.R.L., so I'm taking that task up myself. Let's see how much gets through. Suggestions (post a lot/post only good stuff) welcome.