" fear is the mindkiller "


i head somewhere that part of the photographic process, in terms of expression and the substance of your work, derives from facing fears. in photographing what you fear, you can meet it at it's open face, look in to it's eyes, and see it for all of its brilliant horror.

i'm not sure i wholly subscribe to that notion, but i do see slivers of truth in it. i do flex a confidence over fear when i begin a collaboration with someone willing to sit for me. and even before that, but after the thought that sparks the idea itself, i find myself going through all the motions of such a collaboration.

should i make this work? will people understand? does it matter to anyone but myself, and does that matter at all? will i be judged? am i a good person? am i a bad person? do i float in the gray area in between, and does that matter?

am i making meaningful work? will i be able to build upon someone's trust in me an my abilities? does that matter? how will i define a success from making such work(s), and will i ever be satisfied? is it in the idea-making, the process, the activity, or the knowledge that i "have it" in camera, on paper, online, in the world, where i find my rewards?

and, does it matter. obviously it does, and obviously all these questions float and scatter around my thoughts all the time when making work. even when just thinking of making it.

and in the end of each hesitation, and on the precipice of each cliff'd edge, i find that if i don't make these works, the sense of regret, failure, loss, and disappointment weigh heavier and resound in a looming echo years passed the first tremble.

when people can see your work, and you know that it came from that place, your fears then become a succession of tiny victories, and that will hold you up. face your fears, and be honest. the rest is all a part of realizing yourself.

tonight's homework:


IN THE NEXT TWO (2) WEEKS, write down and list 3-5 ideas for a short series of ten photographs. it could be direct, recreational, conceptual, abstract, portraits, or any number of form. choose at least 2 of those ideas, and create those series of ten photographs. be open to criticism and edit without sentiment.

send to me one out of those two series, and a short description of what it is about. the theme is "fear is the mindkiller" and it is open to your own interpretation. (click here for an example of one)

deadline is friday, march 22nd @ 7pm. i will post on this blog the one i liked the most on march 25th. the winner will receive a set of 10 postcards printed by me. best of luck!