“Why am I a photographer?” In recent months, I feel like I’ve completely lost touch with why I became a photographer. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love what I do, but sometimes I forget why. When I was first starting out as a photographer and all of my shoots were “just for fun,” it was easy to see why I enjoyed it. After all, there were no consequences if I screwed something up, and I looked at photography as more of an escape from reality than a job.
However, once I decided to dive in full-time, my mindset shifted from “I want to create” to “I need to produce.” Sure, I still had shoots that were purely for fun or for portfolio-building, but deep in my mind, a seed was planted that made me look at photography as a job and no longer as a passion. If I’m being honest, that’s completely messed up!
I became a photographer because I love taking pictures. I love evoking emotion from people who view my work, and I love capturing the emotion of my subjects through my lens. It’s truly that simple. I had this epiphany at about 3 o’clock this morning, but it stemmed from a shoot that I had the other day. I was shooting with a local model and we were walking from one location to another when I decided to randomly snap a few pics. I’m a sucker for lighting and that’s usually where my 90 percent of my brain activity lives during a shoot.
Needless to say, that doesn’t leave much for anything else. I don’t know what was different about this particular shoot, but for those few frames I shot, I wasn’t thinking about anything at all. We were just having a conversation, and I was pushing a button. It was like I was back in the good ole days where nothing mattered and I was just snapping some pics because I could. I honestly feel privileged that I can call myself a photographer, but sometimes I forget how amazing it is, and I get stuck in the technical side rather than the emotional side.