Letting go is one of the hardest things to do in life. Whether it be a job, family member, relationship or in my case an art project. Understanding that it is time to part ways can be difficult. For the past few months, I have been doing a project called Photographic Inspiration: A 52 Week Project 2018. In the beginning, it was a way to motivate myself to be photographing weekly and pushing my creativity to think outside the box. However, after just a few weeks it turned into a chore; something that felt forced not exciting. Although I felt this way weeks ago I tried to stick with it and see if I could maybe turn my outlook around. Come to find out that wasn't the case. Thus, after 31 weeks I have decided to bring this project to an end.
Some may call this pathetic, a failure, quitting, a cop out; however I call it a learning experience. When you do something you love for a living it is hard sometimes to find that fine line between work and play especially if your hobbies also include art and photography. If I am working on a project for a client or a piece for an art show my mind set is to give 110% no matter the outcome and to live, love and learn from the task at hand. But when I give myself a personal project in hopes of boosting my moral and finding new passion in my work, things don't always turn out as planned. Thus, at this moment, sudden termination is inevitable and not an option.
Feeling trapped, frustrated, and forced to do something you love when a project is something personal that is suppose to encourage, help growth and inspire can only mean that action must be taken to reevaluate why I am putting in the effort to do this piece in the first place. The name of the project says it all "Photographic Inspiration" yet, all i feel like I am doing is going through the motions each week to appease the social media gods and entertain my close friends and family with new material. If you ask me, it sounds more like work than actually getting paid to do photography/art work. And in this case is not a sufficient way to spend my free time and energy. Needless to say, even a few months ago I would have probably disagreed with all I am writing stating that I am not a quitter and every project has a purpose blah, blah, blah. And yes, sometimes that is true however, I am in a different head space then when I started this project; a better place in fact. Thus, I feel more motivated, enlightened and inspired by everyday events and people all around me. I feel, that this project has sadly not lived up to the purpose and time in which it was created; not showing or expressing how I truly feel. And so as much as it saddens me to say goodbye and to end this photographic journey, I have other inspirations, people and places that are pushing me even farther in my career and personal life. With each passing day I will think less and less of the struggle to create an image just for the sake of boosting my social media or getting likes on facebook and more about the actual feeling and process behind my work being created due to actual inspiring present day events.
Life and art projects shall continue to be challenges in my life. However, with each show, contract, art studio or location I want to make every little bit count. Not because I had a plan, but because that initial idea turned into something that would better me, my career, my friends and family without the burden of just being the physical motions to another so called "project". Art does not control me; I control my art.