This song has been with me for a long time, and in the process has held many different meanings for me. I know I'm not alone when I say that sometimes I experience bouts of depression, moping around the house, laying in bed, feeling like a failure in life. That seems to be the state of existence for a lot of creatives (or perhaps it's just because we like to talk about our feelings on the internet), and more often than not I just succumb to those thoughts that I'll never be good enough, that I will never do anything, that I will be stuck in bed for the rest of my life, etc.
And from one creative who experiences this to another, I just want to say that if you are experiencing that right now, it's okay. It is seriously okay. Life will be okay, you will be okay, you will get over it, you will create something fantastic. And if you're anything like me, you know that the moment you decide to drag yourself out of bed and just get outside in the dead of night when it's freezing outside with your camera by your side, things start to feel right.
That's what I did with this photo. It reminded me so so much of my early work, just me dodging the views of cars from the street, swatting at mosquitoes, running back and forth between my spot and my camera in the front yard, and getting way too excited about throwing bowls of water around.
Right now, this song inspired the photo. I don't know what all the elements of the photo represent. Sometimes artists don't always have to give explanations to their photos. But all I know is that this song touched me in the past, and when I heard it again, I just had to get out of bed and out of my pajamas and make something. And you know what? I'm fine with where I am now. Right now I feel like both characters in the song, and that's okay too. Perhaps I'll never be settled in life, and I'll always be trying to be better and trying to make the world a little brighter, maybe giving some of my brightness away in the process? Is that possible though? I think giving my brightness to others only makes everything brighter.
Behind the Scenes:
After I got the main portraits of myself, I had to somehow create the water elements. If I had been using a model and an assistant, it would have been a lot easier, but like I said before, creating the piece by myself brought a wonderful sense of nostalgia. On the first night, I created droplets of water using a water bottle. Shaking it around ended up being the best to get droplets, and then sweeping it made some pretty great trails of water. But then later that night I decided that the water didn't quite fit the image in my head.
Then a couple nights later I went out again, this time bringing a bowl of water. That ended up being fantastic for creating waves of water. I'm sure if anyone watching me saw how excited I got over pictures of water, they would have thought I was crazy.
Then during post processing, it was just a matter of sticking everything together, adding contrast and color correction, and making some fun light rays.
Here is a before and after:
Though I always talk about how my favorite part of photography is the community of wonderful people and friends, my second favorite part of it just might be feeling absolutely free. And I certainly felt that when creating this--free from the sadness and disappointment I felt, and free from any expectations of me (including my expectations of myself). It's not even about seeing the photos, but about that happiness and adrenaline rush of being outside, of dreaming up a thing in your head, and then of just having fun.
I would encourage everyone to find that thing that is just fun. It doesn't even matter what the end product is. Don't they say that it's about the journey and not the destination? I don't know who they are or if they're right, but I am enjoying the view along the way.