Thursday, June 2, 2011


I hate using the term "Work" to describe photography, art, music, or anything inherently creative. I hate it so much I cringe when I hear it. I metaphorically cry a single tear.
To me, photography is the exact opposite of work. It's freedom. It's play. It's self-expression. To me, when I think of "Work," none of those things come to mind. Work is something you have to do. Work is the unfortunate consequence of playing for too long. Work is what responsible people do. Work, as I think of it, is something I fully intend to avoid.

Don't take that to mean I expect to eat Cheetos on a couch and live in my parents' basement forever though. The fact that I hate work doesn't mean I don't want a job or I don't want to be successful. It just means I want to have FUN while I make money.
You see, photography is fun. Working through the challenges at thevisualCollective is fun. Editing images on my computer, formatting hard drives, cleaning camera gear - it's all fun to me.

Don't call my photography "work," because I guarantee I haven't worked a single minute on any photograph that I care about. I've played, experimented, failed, succeeded, and created... but not worked.

I asked a question via Facebook the other day: "To all my photo friends: why did you get into photography?"

I got a great variety of responses, but none really hit on my intention for the question. The whole reason I do photography is because I love it. I got into photography because I want to show people how I see the world, because I want to express myself, because I have an innate desire TO CREATE.
Same reason I got into music and played in a rock band. Same reason I sang in choir as a kid. I exist to create. Without creation, my life has no purpose. Without creation, life isn't FUN. Instead, it becomes work.
A lot of people go into a field because they enjoy it, but instead of enjoying every minute of their immersion, they find themselves going to "work." For that very reason, some of my good friends chose to get jobs in a completely different field than what they are truly passionate about. Their logic makes sense to me - If I want to continue to enjoy my passion, I have to keep it as a hobby, separate from Work.

Thought it makes sense and I understand why people choose that path, I refuse to do it. I will play every day of my life until I have played my life away.

Don't call my photography work. I guarantee, I haven't worked a single minute on any photograph.
Remember to have fun. Leave work behind and enjoy life.

All images in this post are from the 2010 archives.