I was going through my old deviantART gallery in order to delete some very old self portraits (bad eyebrows, terrible makeup -you know, growing up) and looking for them forced me, of course, to see also all of the rest of my old works.
While logging in, I was already blushing so hard at the thought of looking “how bad I was at photography”, and hoped to find very very quickily the pictures I wanted to delete in order to close my gallery as soon as possible.
When I first had my first reflex (my still beloved Nikon D3000) back in 2010, even though I felt an incredibly strong connection with photography, I spent the first year, maybe year and a half, shooting in automatic mode. Now that I am a purist of manual mode (I always ask myself why I didn’t start using it from the very beginning!), I thought that looking at my old works would have definitely depressed me.
Instead, I still feel incredibly surprised.
Going through my old photos, the first thing that I noticed was not the absence of experience (that wasn’t even a complete absence anyway), but.. joy.
Yes, joy. Because, besides of the fact that I didn’t know how to use my camera properly and didn’t know where I wanted it to bring me, I was so happy and cheerful just for the fact that I had my own reflex and that I could do everything I wanted.
I am starting to remember just now how this simple yet fantastic reflex represented my access to my very own world, my own window on what I see. I could make also the most terrible makeup and then pose in front of the reflex, I would have never thought that it wasn’t perfect or was way too simple -instead, I used to think that everything was a valid way to improve. I was just having fun! And it is something that you can clearly feel while looking at my old pictures.
When you grow up, your perspective on things changes with the events and time themselves. I used to look trough my homepage and stare at the beautiful colors and the apparent simplicity other people’s photos used to communicate me. But times have changed and now, going through the same homepage but with brand new photos, everything started to look the same to me. I see a lot of different people taking pictures, but everyone in the same identical way. A nice way of course, but a way that now feels so impersonal that deep inside of me, I started to feel the extreme desire to never fall into that kind of spider web – a web I have never felt mine, anyway.
I wanted to stay true to myself. But excesses are never a good thing, it’s well known.
If you want something, you gotta try hard, they say. But trying too hard, sometimes, sticks you to your idea so hard you cannot move anymore.
Basically, that’s what happened to me. The colors of my pictures remained the same -the difference is that now I know how to make them directly on camera, but don’t feel the same. When I look at my pictures I feel a bit of.. tiredness. The same tiredness I put when I make my photos, the tiredness I feel because I am trying too hard!
What we feel crearly reflects into what we do. When I look at my recent works, I know it’s clear that I’m trying too hard to do something personal -so personal it ends up losing all the personality I know I have, but for some reason cannot put into what I do.
The more you grow up, the more things look difficult. But looking at the past, I understand that actually they are not.
My goal for the future time and photos to come, is to find again that carefree joy that both me and people around me used to love, in order to love myself even more.
I have had enough of all these fake problems.. It’s time to play now.