I did shift my focus for quite awhile to things like seeing friends in person, cooking quality meals for myself, spending time with my husband. I'm also developing my first feature film so that does take a chunk of time. Script still in the works.
Besides not spinning my wheels dealing with flaky models, last minute cancellations, scheduling conflicts, undeserved egos and prima dona attitudes I realized it wasn't LightWeaver I had grown weary of... it was my focus. Or lack thereof.
Don't get me wrong, photographing good looking guys nude, scantily clad, in costumes, in studio or out... that's fun. At least it can be. But what's the point ultimately? Sure I can take pride in the fact that my images are of high quality and that I'm not one of those photographers who does the same shot, same background, same lighting and same editing style over and over again ad nauseam. In the end though I would rather my life work stand for something. Mean something. Say something. Move people.
I have had some standouts over the years that accomplished this goal. Such as...
... but after 24 years isn't it reasonable to believe that I shouldn't have to search my image collection to show you two images that really mean something to me?
Yes. That answer is yes, it's reasonable to believe that I should have a much large collection of images that actually classify as art and that aren't just throw away spank bank material. Yes that's crass but come on. Let's be honest. OK thanks, now let's move on.
Continuing my narrative let's look at Merriam-Websters definition of Art: Something that is created with imagination and skill and that is beautiful or expresses important ideas or feelings.
Blammo! There it is. "...expresses important ideas or feelings".
Somehow I don't believe that "Damn I want to fuck that guy" is what the dictionary folks had in mind as an important idea or feeling.
Now that I've laid out the contention let's examine the solution.
Moving forward with projects I find inspiring, meaningful and poignant. Pretty simple solution right?
When considering future projects here is my checklist:
- Artistic Integrity?
- What does this concept express?
- Does this matter?
- Is this unique or at least a unique take?
- Will this enrich me artistically?
- Is the end result something I can truly be proud of?
- Will this make the viewer want to choke the chicken or consider life? (the necessary answer is the latter)
Look, I'm not being a snob. There is a time and a place for everything. But my time is increasingly valuable and must be spent on projects I find personally fulfilling on an emotional level.
There is absolutely no shortage of 'togs out there snapping ripped guys in wet underwear. More power to them. I wish them only the best most successful careers. But I no longer want to be counted in their number.
My Life. My Art. My Way.