Saturday, April 11, 2009

Climbing out of the rut

Zach got up with Donovan this morning, allowing me to sleep in till 8:30am. Apparently D woke up shortly at 3am, and then at 7am, I must have really been tired as I completely slept through both wakings. And the sleep seems to have done me well, as I felt so much better this morning. Maybe part of that is that I'd already made up my mind to spend a few hours today away from the house, focusing on me. I'm learning that I need to plan ahead for these things, to set specific plans and follow through on them because otherwise life just has a way of running away with the days and weekends.

So Zach and D left to go hiking, and I went to Borders to hang out at the coffee shop and catch up on gossip, and read some photography books. I grabbed a copy of Bryan Peterson's Learning to See Creatively and read through the first few chapters while sipping my vanilla latte. I've been in this odd rut in photography where I'll see these beautiful, striking images by others that inspire me, but then feel like I lack the time and energy to improve my own skills. I read the advice to take your camera everywhere with you, and I am so jealous of those who can. I know in theory I could, too, but it's tough to manage taking a heavy camera when I already lug so much kid stuff, and the added challenge of trying to find subjects to shoot, then think through the proper settings and interesting compositions while simultaneously trying to keep track of an active toddler is enough to make my head spin. And, of course, at the top of all this is the challenge of trying to fight that self-consciousness that comes with being out in public wielding a fancy camera and feeling intimidated and like a poser rather than A Photographer.

So I'm thinking I need to start planning for photography outings-- devoting particular outings to just going someplace and taking pictures, practicing and playing. That will help give me a subject to shoot other than Donovan (he's super adorable, I know, but I fear that I and a few other family members are the only ones interested in seeing the hundreds of pictures I take of him), help me get over the self-conciousness, and give me a creative outlet and something to do that is separate from Being a Mom.


  1. I feel awkward taking photos where there are people, because I feel a bit odd pointing a camera at strangers. Even if I'm not focusing on people, I worry about someone getting mad.

  2. I'm totally with you about the photography...I've started taking my camera everywhere with me but most of the time, when I see a shot I think I would LOVE, I'm too afraid to stop/pull over/whatever, and pull the camera out and take the pictures...thinking that I'll look ridiculous!...Next time that happens, I think I'll do it, think of this post, and smile!! : )

  3. For a while I had Brian getting up with Mira sometimes on the weekends (only when he didn't have to work in the morning). But we quickly discovered that it didn't help any for him to do that. I'd either spend the entire time that he was up with her lying in bed listening or I'd get up to see if I could help. So once we figured out that I was going to be up either way, we decided to go ahead and let him sleep. Anyway, point is: you must have been dead tired to sleep through D waking up. I'm glad you were able to rest. A well-rested mommie is a good kind to have.

    So since Brian can't effectively help me by getting up in the night, we've been scheduling "mommie time" about once a week. Usually on the weekends, "mommie time" is when I get to leave Mira with Brian and just get out of the house for an hour or two. I usually use that time to run errands, but it's still nice to get a break. Even if I'm just going to the grocery store, I can amble down every aisle if I want to and not worry that I'll have a crying baby by the time I get to checkout. Anyway, I highly recommend the "mommie time".

  4. Those people you will probably never see again, and who really cares what they think. If you want to improve, I say just do it. And it is great practice to getting over the fear of people looking at you!

    I bring my small camera with me when I can and don't feel like having the big one around.. That helped me not miss out on the photos I was hoping to take~!

  5. A) FAMILY IS VERY IMPORTANT. You should make family happy. TAKE MORE PHOTOS OF DONOVAN.

    B) I've been meaning to ask you if you've looked into Mother's Morning Out programs. I don't know at what ages they start, but something where once or twice a week you could leave D there, he could hang out with other kids, and you could DO YOUR OWN THING. Get a haircut, sit at Borders, take a nap, take photos, watch a movie... YOU time. Because that's important.

  6. I have three books by Bryan Peterson and love them all!



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