Friday, September 26, 2014

WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS...

Like a deer in the headlights, frozen in real time and I'm losing my mind, it's time to move on.
- Tom Petty
Sometimes when all else fails, breath in, breath out, brew a cuppa and let go. There's no need to torture yourself any longer as no positive outcome will be reached if you get worked up and stressed.

Unfortunately, that's easier said than done! Since I am an obstinately determined person, I have difficulties to call it quits and move on or press pause, and I generally obsessively continue trying to finish what I had started, although I am tense, flustered and in a murderous mood.

I guess it has to do with the fact that I hate to sit on things and leave unresolved problems clog my life as confusion and chaos make me depressed, anxious, irritable and fidgety. Nothing will calm me down and the only way to find peace is to rid myself of the cause of my troubles!

Speaking of issues, lately I have been going through a rough phase with my photography. Since I received a new and slightly more upmarket DSLR camera (no high-end camera though), my worries are endless. Nothing seems to go right anymore and picture shooting has become my nemesis - not that it wasn't already, but it has got even worse.

Every shot I take is unsatisfying and mediocre. This situation sickens me and makes me feel extremely frustrated, unsure, blocked and down. I know my equipment is ridiculously basic (one camera, one lens - 50mm - for food photography and a very outdated processing software, plus a balcony that serves as "studio") and I still have a lot to learn about this art, but I have the impression that the little "talent" I possessed is fading away and all I can produce now is bad.

Nowaydays, photoshoots are excruciatingly strainful, exhausting and I need to mentally prepare myself for days before I dare grab my camera again. Pleasure and playfulness have been replaced by self-doubt, desperation, pain and aversion. As a result, I no longer have fun while snapping pictures and on certain days I just want to throw away my Nikon, retire from blogging and dig a hole and hide in it.

The more nervous I am, the less I'll be capable of creating photos that make me happy and the more my inclination towards depression and disquietude will grow. A vicous circle.

Anyway, thankfully, I can still take refuge in another great artform: writing. To me, words are worth a thousand pictures and even if poignant images convey millions of emotions, the same can be said about an artfully written story...

39 comments:

  1. You're such a beautiful writer and photographer. You're really talented, don't forget it...

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  2. Dear Rosa;
    I am surprised by the thought of you not being happy with your photos.
    I am always in awe of your work.
    You are a true talent..Photography seems to be your prefoession.You write beautifully also..but don't think less of your photos..I amongs athers would be thrilled to take photos as you have.
    Your vistas are breathtaking.. no one I have seen takes landscapes like you..and you always have beautiful food photography.
    Always.
    There are so many different styles out there now..pale and dreamy..dark and moody.. super Instagrammed..
    You ahve YOUR style.
    I want my words to reflect my sincerity so I will stop here..In case they begin to sound repetitive..
    I did want to mention something..not sure if you know this or are even interested..
    we were running on old XPs.. had to upgrade and Windows whatever we have now..8 or 8.1 did not support my very very old Photoshop of maybe 10 years ago.
    I had read about Photoshop Cloud..w/ Lightroom..and never thought of it..until my son-in-law told me that hsi brother-in-law..subscribed to it..(Sounds complicated..)
    Anyways..I subscribed 2 months ago..and believe me Lightroom is not a walk in the park..I still can't export and import freely..but the Photoshop has some similarities to my old program..and although a TRUE novice in PS too..I feel it keeps me in the learning curve to keep my brain active..
    with your youth and talent you probably master both.
    I have gone on and on..but just wanted to mention this option.It comes to $11.49 a month for me in Canada at the moemnt and I would be sad if it stopped or started going up in price.
    It is fun for me..
    Long winded comment..
    Have a lovely weekend..there is nothing wrong with being out of it ..out of anything for a bit.
    En terminant... Tu as un talent hors pair.

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    Replies
    1. I apologize for ALL the typos..A typist I am not..

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    2. No problem dear! I saw the words and not the typos... ;-) By the way, a heartfelt THANKS for the kind words, encouragement and heartwarming compliments! C'est fabuleux d'avoir des lecteurs comme toi. xoxo

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  3. Rosa, I know Exactly how you feel. Although I am stunned to hear that you have doubts about your photography (I think it's brilliant!), I'm relieved to know I am not alone in my food blogging angst. I used to post recipes twice a week, now I can barley manage to squeeze out one...and it has everything to do with taking photos. Baking is now a chore because, in the back of my mind, I'm already dreading the photography portion (and the headache which is bound to follow). Things were much easier a few years ago when our food blogging world was a bit less crowded... ;)

    Thank you for this candid post. If I lived nearby, I'd bring over a Swedish visiting cake (and Irish whisky). We could dish out our woes and shed some light on photography's mercurial temperament. xoxo

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  4. You are a perfectionist, ain't you? I find your photography very beautiful, Rosa.

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  5. It is rather frustrating when the quality of a "work" depends on an instrument (the camera, in this case). We are not under control. I also understand that the fears we have make us feel totally unable to control the instrument and improve. We are able, though. You are able. Perfectionism sometimes is nothing more than a hurdle or a trap. I am trapped in it quite often. You found your way out by writing... you're not trapped!

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  6. Triste de lire que tu te sens ainsi...
    J'apprécie chacune de mes visites ici, je savoure chacune des photos, et j'admire ton talent. Pour la photo ET pour l'écriture.
    Tchin Rosa!

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  7. Aw dear Rosa I understand you sometimes we have this mood and is not easy.
    BTW like Monique say I LOVE yours pics always maybe for you are not the best but to us are always amazing. Always I say that I love your pictures Rosa.
    ANd I love how you writing.

    xo

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  8. Rosa, your photos are always good and so is your writing, you're very talented! I too am an obstinately determined person who persevere sto the end. So keep up the good work with what you're doing!

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  9. i'm always in awe of your photos, rosa--you do AMAZING work! don't get discouraged. :)

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  10. My Dearest Rosa, I hear the pain in your voice and your expressions while surprising to many of us is understandable because you are an artist. Know my friend that your photography is excellent, you have talent and you have shared it with us in very many ways through various themes in your work whether it is food, travel, black and white or abstract. I have told you before, there are many of your images that I would love to purchase and print to hang in my home as artwork, I am sure that many have expressed such a sentiment too.

    Remember also, Rosa, that it is not the camera that takes great photographs but the photographer. Therefore, while you may feel down about having 1 camera and 1 lens, look at what you are able to accomplish! I think your frustration is related to you wanting to do even more and to explore other areas of photography in general. Perhaps this down period is the push you need to take things further with your photography, to really take it on professionally.

    I chuckled when you described your studio. You know why my "studio" is? The draining board section of my kitchen sink! LOL. Each time I want to take a photograph, I remove the dish rack and line the space with bristol board and shoot.

    Keep the faith my friend and do not quit!

    Love always, Cynthia

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  11. You are an inspiration to many out there (me included :D).
    Take five, take a break and all will be be good again
    Hope your mojo will be back soon, Rosa.
    Take Care

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  12. Rosa, along with the other comments, let me say that you are indeed very talented and you have no fears about talent. We all go through stages in life and you're just going through a particularly rough one. I am "get it done" person too, so it's difficult for us to "let it go". We want to solve the problem and put it behind us, but sometimes life steps in and stops that process temporarily. Make yourself relax, take it easy on yourself, call a friend, go for a walk, or write your feelings as you have here. Reread the comments above over and over until you truly believe them. I promise, this WILL pass.
    Sam

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  13. Your words are lovely and your photos magic, Rosa.

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  14. Rosa, I understand self doubt very well. That said, your photos are gorgeous and you certainly write well too. Don't stop taking photos. For all the ones that you might not be satisfied with, there are always going to be winners. If only my pathetic attempt at photos came out nearly as lovely as yours.

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  15. I remind you of the saying of Leonardo da Vinci: "the painter who does not doubt himself will never achieve much":
    Liebe Grüsse und Kopf hoch !

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  16. Sorry to hear about the issues that you've had shooting. The photos look great but of course we can't see what you want to create :)

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  17. Rosa, I have been not a good commenter on your blog but today I cannot pass.

    I hear you sister! I believe your photos are beautiful but I am full of self doubts. I haven't posted in my blog for ages, mainly because taking photos of food took half day and it was becoming a chore and I could never be happy with my photos. Too much perfectionism is not a good thing.

    I changed career and I need to be able to take before and after pictures of the gardens I design or take care of. I don't seem to find a way to convey my point and my photos are so uninteresting.

    I hope you and I will find out drive back, photography is another way to express our creativity.

    Have a great week!

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  18. A BIG THANK YOU FOR THE WONDERFUL COMMENTS!!! YOU MADE MY DAY AND HELPED ME FEEL BETTER...
    ROSA XO

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  19. Well Rosa, I think your photos are marvelous, but you're the artist (and, I think, a perfectionist) and know more than I what you want to see when the photo is developed. Please don't get discouraged, we love looking at them.
    As for annoying unresolved problems...I have two right now. One I have been trying to resolve since May. Very frustrating, but I agree it's better to face each of them as they arrive and not procrastinate.

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  20. Rosa - your photos are gorgeous - but you are an Artist - a perfectionist and all I see is perfection where you see "unsatisfying and mediocre"...

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  21. Rosa, you may not be aware but you are an inspiration to many. Your photos are not just beautiful but they have a soul.
    The fact that you are dissatisfied with the pics is a reflection of you being a perfectionist. I am sure you will find a way.

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  22. Seeing your world through your eyes has brought so many of us such joy dear Rosa and as such, we also hear the agony through your words. But, isn't this how it should be? We welcome the Spring with open arms but without Fall there would be no Spring for many of us. Sometimes we must go through these anguishes, oh how we would like to go around, so we may grow and learn more not only about ourselves but also about those around us.

    Lovely words you have shared with us today and they have fed into captivating thoughts and words shared by so many. Thank you, Rosa...

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  23. I am sorry to hear that you are having this rough patch, but indeed you are right that sometimes the best thing is to take a breath and let inspiration return to you. You are a wonderful photographer. Getting a new camera is always difficult in the beginning, but it will get better.

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  24. Ah Rosa, il me semble t'avoir entendu dire ce genre de choses deja, plusieurs fois au cours des annees precedentes. Ne te decourage pas, tu sais combien ces crises passageres menent a de plus belles photos encore. Si nous avions tous seulement le dizieme de ton talent nous serions ravis.

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  25. If you call this nemeses …I wonder how you will shoot images when you are in form. I absolutely love the images and your perspective. U have talent.

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  26. I love these pictures, really lovely flowers.

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  27. Charming! Your photographs tell stories that I like to listen. I wish I have this photo on my wall.

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  28. Oh Rosa,
    Your photos are such an inspiration and source of delight for so many of us who read your beautiful blog. I understand that all of us 'creatives' go through a 'fog' in our search for presenting beauty . . . and I hope that you will soon return to knowing that you truly are a source of beauty, intrigue, and inspiration in all of your work.
    Peace be with you dear friend,
    Roz

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  29. Rosa, your photos are exquisite! I heard a quote once that may help: "The best camera is the one you have with you." You have an eye for textures and light that no camera can take away from you. This frustrating season will pass - give it time. xo!

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  30. What camera did you get? It's really the lens, not the camera, that makes the photo. And in what way do you find your photos unsatisfying? They look good as always to me. However, I assume your new camera has lots more megapixels. It could be your old photo software just isn't well-suited to your new camera. After years of resisting (because I really dislike the catalog feature) I've started using Lightroom. It's really a terrific tool, particularly if you do raw conversions (and I shoot everything in raw these days). It's not cheap, but you can often find deals on it. Anyway, hope you get comfortable with your new camera soon!

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  31. No matter how sophisticated the gadgets are or lacking thereof -- it doesn't contribute to beautiful and artistic images. Your eyes are your best lens that always capture it all, so artfully. Never have self-doubt on your creative ability my friend. It's a matter of time before you get out of this mental block.

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  32. I love all your photos and writing .. it's an outstanding work .. but I can understand perfectly the way you feel sometimes.. I think at some point we all have the same fears and loose the fun and pleasure in our work.

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  33. It's hard to believe someone like you (I consider a great photographer) can't get out of a slump. BUT I know, you worked really hard to get to where you are and you will get out of this current frustration someday soon and become even stronger photographer! I know you do. Probably that's how you became an amazing photographer. Good luck with the new camera and tell us the story how you recover from it. I've been in a slump for a long time...

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