Step One

Time is an idea I can’t stop considering lately. It’s a delicate pattern carved in stone and as heavy and permanent as it feels to lift I just can’t seem to shake the feeling that I have grown weaker to it’s weight. Ive come to realize that there is no such thing as free time, or a day off anymore. “My” time is no longer mine. My life no longer feels quite as unique and philosophical, only steadfast in its attempt to teach me a lesson, that somehow my narrow and flighty addiction to capturing light and living in the moment is but the smallest nearly forgotten footnote in the broader perspective that life seems to want me to consider now.

All this is to say that fatherhood has certainly cast a new light onto my back, more constant than the sun and infinitely brighter. I am learning that time is attention, time is focus, time is fully understanding the importance of every available second spent alive. More valuable and precious than I ever thought possible.

This has made it harder to appreciate light, art, music, emotion. A deeper connection with the world around me has been frayed and heavily damaged as of late. In regards to my deeper understanding of life through artistic expression, many things seemed to work against me over the course of this past year. One camera died, another stolen, work and life at home so heavy that a practical life was the only side of reality I could see. Trails of light in the dust, intricate shadows, lonely corners of the world needing my attention, they all hid out of sight for long periods at a time but I refused to turn a blind eye to this hole that opened up in my creative self. The blackness was far too alarming and dense, I realized that if I didn’t start seeking out light again I may loose it for good.

So I turned to music first; sound, melody, rhythm, it gives me pace, subtle yet steady, I let it fill the spaces between work and home. Through creating music and pushing time around to get out behind a couple of turntables and help people dance with that therapeutic thump, clap, thump, clap, music became my creative pulse this past year when light hid so far away.

Now, recently I was blessed with the opportunity to have a new camera in my life. YoungDoo and I bought a used 5D Mk III from a photographer friend locally and while we are sharing it between her freelance photography work and my hope to use it as a tool to awaken artistically again behind a lens, it has certainly, without a doubt, been a blessing for both of us to have around.

It may not be the latest, smallest, most clever camera available today but it sure has sparked my imagination again and made me want to continue to seek out lonely or beautiful moments hidden around me and I can feel it start to come back. These inspiring, quiet milliseconds are doing their damnedest to get my attention and remind me that even among a life that has been feeling particularly heavy and opaque, that light, even when faint, can inspire hope and remind me that time can in fact still slow down enough to let me appreciate it and at times try and capture it and share these nearly overlooked moments with others.

And in that spirit, I’m sharing a new desktop and a toast to to the light, may it shine just a little bit brighter when I have a camera by my side.

Comments

  1. Justin Mabee - June 30, 2017 at 9:29 am

    I love when you do the moody shots! Reflecting on how your time is not your own anymore, I get it. Completely.

  2. Logan Pyle - June 30, 2017 at 10:48 am

    Terrific post, man. I was probably in the same place you’re talking about for 2-3 years once becoming a dad.

  3. Mike - July 5, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    Thanks for sharing this, John. I love the shot, by the way. I hope you find the time to enjoy your own individual ‘things’ again. It must be incredibly hard juggling everything around and find some time for your own enjoyment.

  4. Jimmy - July 6, 2017 at 3:58 am

    I’m a dad of two, aged 5 and 6, and I completely relate to all the feelings, beutifully expressed, above. It gets to the point where I almost feel guilty for taking a moment to enjoy a few minutes of time to myself. I never fully appreciated how valuable that time was until I had to start balancing it so delicately.

  5. evgeniy - July 6, 2017 at 7:57 am

    First of all – thank you, you encouraged me to buy a simple camera.

    Thanks for such simple and clean words, It’s very interesting to watch your world and views on things. I would be grateful if you would evaluate my “photos”

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