It's been a long, slow summer for personal work, and I have spent much of it just looking at new work that inspires me by other photographers. I call this the masochistic stage of the creative process, because while it's inspiring to discover beautiful work that makes your heart beat faster, it's also a little painful. Especially if you haven't had the chance to really push yourself in a while. You start feeling inadequate, washed-up, empty.
But there seems to be some value in these dry spells....I become a sponge for everything I see and love and want more of in my own work. My thirst is unquenchable, I can't stop looking, searching, wanting, longing. And then it's like a little clock starts ticking.....I know I need to take all this feeling, all these wordless thoughts, and make something new, or I'll explode. I get irritable. Restless. Distracted. I'm not that fun to be around.
That's about where I was when Victoria got a hold of me last week about a shoot. We talked at length about the creative process; she is a singer/songwriter and fully understood my state of mind--and even more wonderful, she was fully on board with my vision and willing to experiment and be unguarded and vulnerable and real. We spent a couple of hours in her apartment, listening to music, talking, playing in the perfect light from her windows. It was an eye-opening, fulfilling experience that I know will inform my work for a long time. I'm thankful.