There’s an old saying that “time flies when you’re having fun”. That must be true since the past three years for me here at Photography Life have gone by at supersonic speeds.
Unlike many photography blogs on the internet Photography Life has carved out a unique place for itself with its comprehensive and diverse content, while at the same time creating a respectful environment for its family of readers.
Many folks turn to Photography Life as their primary source for the latest impartial gear reviews, in-depth tutorials on various techniques, and a range of feature articles that provide insights on many other interesting topics. There’s few other places that one can go on the internet to find so much in one location.
It’s been three years this month since Nasim officially asked me to join the writing team, and introduced me to the readers at Photography Life. Being a small part of the talented team here comes with its own set of personal challenges. The first is that most perishable of commodities – time. Regardless of what seminar that each of us may have attended at some point in our lives, time management is an impossibility. It simply does not exist. None of us has ever been able to manage time – it marches on incessantly with each ticking second and cannot be controlled. Each passing moment brings us ever closer to the end of our time here on this spinning orb…and for many of us fuels an inner sense of urgency.
The reality is that all we can do, and ever have been able to do, is manage our priorities. Every Photography Life editorial contributor makes a conscious decision to allocate some of their time to craft an article. Just like every one of you who read Photography Life make a conscious decision to dedicate some of your precious time when you post a comment. Once committed that time that each of us dedicate to an action can never be recovered and reused.
The second challenge is personal growth. From where will that next spark of inspiration come? What images will we see in our minds that we can bring to life through the magic of photography? How can we touch another human being with our creations? These challenges are not unique to contributors at Photography Life – they are a part of every one of us who has a creative passion for photography and how it can help enhance the world around us.
The third challenge is equanimity. How do we find and maintain the inner calmness to accept opposing views that can sometimes become emotionally charged and potentially irrational? Whenever any of us displays our work or expresses an opinion about anything we risk criticism and ridicule. It simply comes with the territory and cannot be avoided.
To stop creating and to stop engaging with others, is to stop living. At the start of each day we gather all of the courage we can muster and venture forth as if this day may be our last. Each of us knowing deep down that one day we will be right about the finality of our life here.
Time. Growth. Equanimity. Three challenges that each of us share. I am most thankful to have had many opportunities to do so with all of you over the past three years…and I look forward to more ahead.
All images were captured hand-held in available light. All images in this article were produced from RAW files using my standard process of OpticsPro 11, CS6 and Nik Suite.
Article Copyright 2017 Thomas Stirr. All images are Copyright 2016 Thomas Stirr. All rights reserved. No use, adaptation or reproduction of any kind including electronic and digital is allowed without written consent. Photography Life is the only approved user of this article. If you see it reproduced anywhere else it is an unauthorized and illegal use.
Very nice article, Thomas! Plenty of feed for thought and reflection! I enjoy your articles immensely, particularly since you write quite a bit on the Nikon 1 system.
I have also recently joined the Nikon 1 world, and this spring I plan my first trip (to the north-eastern state of Sikkim in India) with the Nikon 1 V1 and Nikon 1 J5. While I am a little apprehensive leaving my Nikon D7100 with the attendant big glass at home, I am looking forward to transitioning to a smaller, lighter setup where the weight of the camera gear does not get in the way of the overall experience.
Thanks once again for your articles!
I hope you have a wonderful trip to Sikkim and that you have fun with your Nikon 1 gear! Thanks for your supportive comment – it is much appreciated!
Wonderful photos and thoughtful post – just what I expect from Thomas Stirr. Thank you for sharing your photos and mind with us!
Thank you for your kind words Joni!
Another inspiring and informative article. I always look forward to reading your thoughts and viewing your photos.
I’m glad you enjoyed it Vinnie!
Well, sorry Nasim, my comment wasn’t meant to detract anything from you and other contributors here as I certainly also enjoy your articles and articles from other contributers a lot. It is just because I’m also a Nikon 1 shooter and therefore find the articles from Tom particularly interesting :-)
Always enjoyable articles and very good images from you Tom. Your articles are the ones I’m always looking forward to.
Thanks a lot.
Thanks for your ongoing support Anders – always appreciated!
Congratulation Thomas. Great photos. Great blog
Thanks Andre…I’m glad you enjoyed the photos!
I always enjoy reading your posts (as well as those of Nasim & others).
I am not always in a position to respond due to your first reflection – time (the pressures of work).
But we must be found doing what is most important & useful in life, which is blessing others with our lives.
If we are doing that, then we can rest while working.
Your second reflection on growth – it must be both internal and external.
But as we grow older, internal change is more looked for & harder to come by.
As it has been well expressed, it is better to “light a candle than curse the darkness”.
And this site well illustrate this.
The final though on equanimity is of course the toughest.
It is more an issue of the heart (peace) rather than of mind I think, but no need for me to split hairs.
This a life long journey that, unfortunately, not everyone seeks.
In our troubled times I often rest in good personal relationships that will transcend time,
as well in a better knowing of myself.
Appreciate your wise reflection
Thank you for sharing your thoughts on time, growth and equanimity. They have enriched the discussion here.
Although photography is very much about the gear, Thomas demonstrates that the photographer still matters. Great images. It makes me wonder if I should get the 1 system again that I had many years ago when it first came out. I had the V1 but it wasn’t ready for prime time. I hope they come out with another V series camera soon. Thanks for the inspiring photos Thomas.
Thank you for your comment Robert – much appreciated!
I’m always amazed at the quality of your images. Gives me hope I can be a better photographer when taking my time with what I see. Thanks once again.
Thanks for the supportive comment Dick…much appreciated!
“The third challenge is equanimity. How do we find and maintain the inner calmness to accept opposing views that can sometimes become emotionally charged and potentially irrational?” This is part of what I love about this website, and why I quit an “Ugly” photography website that was equally informative but that had an egocentric, insulting, and confrontational tone.
Everything flows down hill, down stream, and from the top down. I believe that the calmness, courtesy, and laser focus on photography this site exhibits is a direct result of the values and wisdom of Nasim and the contributors who are attracted to him and his site, and to whom he is attracted. You all are a treasure and are deeply appreciated. What you have taught me about photography and life has been invaluable. Thank you all.
David, thank you for the kind words, we all really appreciate it.
Truly, we have amazing readers, some of whom became our best contributors. We are very grateful and blessed to have such wonderful, patient, smart, calm and mature readers, who inspire us to produce great content every day.
Thank you David! As Nasim mentioned in his comment, our readers are a source of ongoing inspiration for us.