Photo thought of the day…While organizing content for my website, I came across the photos I took when my brother, his Swedish wife and I took the 4:30am train down to DC to watch Obama be sworn in. It is an amazing experience putting my first website together bc I get to look through all my work and have a platform to show my photographs and video. Check out From Slavery to History on my website.
Here are some lessons I have been learning over the past week summed up in one-liners.
-During a New York Times shoot I was in a very small town with one intersection photographing a mail box. I was hired to photograph a mailbox. And it was stressful because I could have done it wrong. I paused, with encouragement from my wife, stopped, stood, and realized that all I could see what what I saw. So I took the picture of what was in front of me.
-Content is still king. It is easy to get wrapped up in producing to please others or for hits, for my own idea of success or for what I can hope to become. All of those motives have given me a portfolio of diverse work but have left me to understand that I am starting a new now that I have recognized that the only motive I should attach to exists simply within what has created me.
-The key to failure is trying to please everyone.
-Comparison is death when it becomes how the way I value my work. Constant comparison marginalizes my work by influencing me to believe my work is only valuable when it looks like some other work I have seen. Comparison leads to a constant game of catch up. An important part of production is to relax and value what is in front of me and give it the time to be produced into it’s fullest potential.
Work + Faith
-God has called me into a specific calling. Even though other filmmaker’s and photographer’s careers look very attractive, I have my own path that will lead me.
-The young rich ruler that the bible references has no recorded name 2000 years later. He had a name once but what he built his life around, his identity was what he became known for and is remember by.
-There is no separation between work and faith.
-I am having to believe that God is doing something great in me. I undervalue his work often and with the gift of my wife I have begun to understand how important I am to Him.
-While asking God to point out the idols in my life he has spoken in many answers. For a long time I was working to become known, to have my work known, to have identity in more than just me. He revealed that I am a master of masking my search to be included in this world with the good intention of being a Christ follower. Even while preparing my new website and blog I had to check myself that I wasn’t just preparing to be famous by setting up a system by which to be famous.
-I am learning there is so much joy in the Lord as I abandon hope in the mirages of this world.
-As God’s creation, we are made to search for Him and his son Jesus. All of creation screams his glory. I search as often as I can for everything that was created through Him, totally not giving Him glory, but holding up all he has given me and could give me as my hope. And then He reminds me He is there and all everything everywhere is to point to Him.