The Choices We Make...

To stray from a routine into utter disarray is not always a bad thing. However, it should come with a warning. I will be the first to admit I get antsy; I am not a creature of habit nor routine. Yet, there are still parts of my life which must be taken care of on a daily basis such as matters concerning my photography business. In addition, to personal hygiene, self-care and the most important (at least to me) having a place of sanctuary to unwind, breathe and collect my thoughts after a long day.

Since my semi-calculated plan to take off to the west coast and explore it's mountains and whitewater, I have come across a few different things. Some good, some not so good and others that well confuse me. But then again we all know that no matter how much planning goes into anything, life can still be as unpredictable as can be. Now back to what I was saying before my mind goes too astray. Since I have arrived back in Colorado for the summer, I have not had a moments rest. I went from living in Steamboat Springs in a large two bedroom apartment with my best friend, to living on my buddies couch, to now tenting it in the lovely town of Buena Vista. Amongst the many places to rest my head I have photographed my first GoPro Mountain Games, hiked in Canyon City and am about to photograph Fibark Paddling Festival in Salida Colorado this weekend.

For the most part, all of these adventures and undertakings have been received with upmost positivity and a smile on my face. However, just recently in the last 48 hours or so I have been feeling a bit exhausted and burnt out. Finding my stride and groove out west I knew is/was going to be a challenge and I am always up for a good fight. But lately even the little things have been becoming somewhat of a struggle. Self-Motivation being the biggest of them all. I have found that having the freedom to be completely mobile is liberating and exhausting at the same time. This has only made me more antsy and yearning for my art studio and some form of consistency in New York/East Coast.

On the flip side, me being my own worst critic and a stubborn Italian, it has made it that much more difficult to concentrate on my present when all I can think is that if I give in and go back to New York I feel like I failed. I know what you are all thinking, no it is not a failure to get up and leave. Time and place is what it is all about and yes that is true, but there is also a strong part of me that feels if I go home to my own bed, steady jobs, and a handful of friends I see sporadically on visits back east, that I am taking the easy way out. Thus, I will be missing out on opportunities to better myself, my company and be someone/something out here. At the same time my work flow and not having certain opportunities that I have in New York such as internet at all hours, a roof over my head and friends to paddle with, may be exactly what I need to be focused right now.

I have had my ups and downs before and have always found the best way to conquer them, learn from my mistakes, and benefit myself and others. Yet, I can't keep thinking that where I am sitting at this moment may not truly be where I need to be. Yes, the GoPro Mountain Games was an epic experience. And yes, I am stoked about photographing a ton more wicked cool paddlers this weekend. But I have other projects, ideas, and needs that also must be fulfilled for me to live to my upmost potential. And it is these personal/professional goals that are swirling around in the back of my head making me long for one place to have it all.
At one point in my career a few years ago I thought it was tough traveling from state to state on the east coast; always moving, doing, being. For the past 3 years I have been living bi-coastal and let me tell you it is a blessing and a curse. Ironically enough at this moment I am in the process of building material for a personal project called "What is home" taking on the notion and idea of different people's perceptions of comfort, peace, love and acceptance through their lifestyles and living quarters. The more I rework and think about this concept, the more I battle my own thoughts about my "home".
It is scary, exciting, heartbreaking and in some cases mind numbing to think about. Yet, in the end, all the pain, emotion, triumph and fear makes for some damn good artwork. If I have learned anything these past few months it's that without amazing friends and family I would never have survived.
So do I tough it out; try to find some form of functioning schedule with no remorse amongst the rivers and mountains of Buena Vista and Colorado? Or do I throw in the towel, make the road trip journey back home to my studio, regroup and try to gain some kind of focus with my scattered work flow? This is definitively one of those times where the answer is a double edged sword. In my heart and my gut I know the answer, but right now in my head all I know is that tomorrow is another sunrise.