Reflecting

reflectionIts always interesting to think back in life to where you were at a given time and compare it to where you are now. Sometimes this comparison is good, others we would prefer to forget.

In 2000, I had the opportunity to visit London for the first time. I remember walking around the city, taking in the sites, dreaming what it must be like to live there. Now, 14 years later, I find myself walking around London, taking in the sites, and reminding myself that I do live here.

Photography is very similar. As photographers, I think there is value in reflecting back on the past (this really applies to any area of life). Think back for a second to your first foray into the craft of photography. What did your pictures look like? How was your composition? Exposure? Did you understand ISO? Aperture? Shutter Speed?

Maybe you like me thought putting your camera in “P” mode stood for professional.

But reality is that over time and energy invested, we grow. We move from one point to another. We develop our craft as we work through it. Then, one day, we find ourselves wandering through our image gallery reflecting back on the past.

It is healthy, just as in life, to look back over where you have come from photographically. It is encouraging to look back and see that you are making progress.

Not quite where you want to be? Great. None of us are. Rather, we are a community of people working through this craft together. There are a lot of great resources out there to teach you for free and I would venture to say that most of the photographers with dedicated blogs to teaching would love to help you learn in whatever way they can.

Here’s to the future! Here’s to the unknown! Where will you be in another 14 years?

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Reflecting on the year past

It’s December, and soon 2009 will come to an end.  I can’t believe how fast time goes by, I mean it seems like just a few days ago I was standing in Wenceslas Square in Prague, Czech Republic dodging all of the fireworks people are shooting off.  Now here I am 11 months later and as the year closes it’s nice to slow down and reflect.

This year has been a big year for me, I started this year in Prague, I was living in Moscow, Russia when the year began. I got to go on several photojournalism trips to remote places in Siberia, Russia and so much more.  I can’t even begin to think about all that I have been blessed with this year without thinking of one of my biggest blessings.  I got engaged this year to a lovely young lady.  God has truly blessed me.

I love taking time to reflect and remember. I think of the difficult times of transition as I moved back to the United States from Moscow.  This was a big transition as I had been out of American culture for over 2 years.  I began to hear and see things in life here that didn’t make sense because I was so far removed from everything. I was shocked at how strange it was to hear everyone speaking English. I have had to learn how to transisiton from being a single guy to a “fiance” and soon to be “husband”.

I’m excited to see what the future holds in 2010, I will be getting married, going back to school to get my masters degree, and moving to a new state.  Many changes await for me in this coming year, and I can’t wait to see how God is going to bring me through all of them.

Isn’t it great to just stop and reflect on what God has brought about in your life over the past year!