Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Obsessions


Writers need obsessions. Photographers need obsessions. Obsessions help us to develop the gifts and talents we have been given.

Last year was my year of obsessions, although this year seems to be shaping up the same way. Some obsessions are the same as last year, some old obsessions have been replaced by new ones.


The first few months of last year I was obsessed with my water project, I am reliving that obsession now as I reread my Morning Pages journal entries from last year. I was constantly obsessing over the weather, getting blog posts done, and taking photographs for those blog posts. I hope to not be as obsessed with one particular thing this year, I don't think I can stomach reading about it day after day next year.


I think the turning point to ending that singular obsession came one morning last April. It was a day for shirt sleeves, I was out exploring a county park I hadn't been to before. As I hiked along the soggy grass paths, I realized that life is too short to focus so much on one thing. I was missing out on all the other things I enjoy. Once I got back to the parking lot, I sat down at a picnic table next to the historic barn I had spent the morning photographing, I took my notebook and pen out of my backpack and began to make a list of all things that interest me, an obsession list. The list was long.


Finished with the list, I repacked my notebook and pen, gathered up my water bottle and backpack and returned to my car. I drove home with a new perspective, determined to not waste any more time ignoring all my other obsessions. Wouldn't life be more fun if I dabbled a little in all of them. When I got home, I transferred the list I had made in the notebook to the notes app. on my phone. I wanted to be able to see that list at any moment, and maybe even add to it.


This morning I went to the notes app. to see if the list was still there, it was. I haven't look at in a while or added to it, but the list did what it was suppose to do, it got me out of that single obsession rut.

Here is my list from April 2015, in no particular order:
  • travel
  • coffee shops
  • people watching
  • water
  • barns
  • iPhoneography
  • leading lines
  • self-portraiture
  • food
  • vintage items
  • color
  • walking
  • parks
  • Mallory
  • Great Aunt Viola
  • Grandma
  • old buildings
  • history
  • reading
  • small town life
  • typography
  • old signs
  • decay
I thought I would make a new list for this year, here is my list as of March 2016:
  • reading
  • people watching
  • writing
  • storytelling photography
  • walking
  • learning
  • handmade pottery mugs
  • old buildings
  • painterly landscape photo processing
  • neutral colors - white, gray and black
  • beaches
  • audio books
  • podcasts
  • fog
  • natural light
  • wide open space with horizon lines
My list is smaller this year, but I feel it is more focused than ever, there is still plenty of room within many of these to develop sub-obsessions.

Don't be surprised if you see some of these obsessions being turned into future blog posts.

What about you? What are your obsessions this year? I would love to hear.

13 comments:

  1. My favourite photo above is number three! I love that wavy line disappearing into the mist and the sand looks as if it has been freshly raked!
    So interesting to see your list of obsessions from last year compared to this years!
    I don't know if I have any obsessions, but I would join you on storytelling photography! I find that really fun! I shall have to think about making a list!

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  2. What a good idea. I think I might just try that today.

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  3. Well, I immediately grabbed a sheet of paper & started my list. What a great idea to write these things down. Duh............I'm a little slow some days.

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  4. I love all of your photos! I have many obsessions too, it will be fun to think about them and write them down :-)

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  5. This is an interesting post. To me the word "obsession" has always had rather negative connotations. I don't think of myself as being "obsessed" with anything, really, except perhaps reading. And yet there are things that I love, that are strong, recurring elements in my life. I will have to think about this more, and make a list of my own.

    I love all these photos. There is a simplicity, a quiet, clean calmness to each one that is very appealing to me.

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  6. Looking forward to your obsessions this year, Sarah!
    What a good idea.

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  7. I love this post, Sarah. Oh the obsessions we humans keep. My current obsession is learning new software. I've been drinking out of the proverbial fire hydrant. Evernote, Wrike (project management), Toggl (time management) Ecwid (online store). Last night I got a store on my blog and this morning on my FB biz page. So exciting. Now just to create more products. I seem to have fallen off my photography and art. Maybe I need to make an obsession list to get me back out there! Thanks for your inspiration.

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  8. Hmmm... I would say passion is a better word for me. But I have been able to narrow that down also. Growing my photography skills and getting out and meeting others like myself! It is amazing what time and a change in attitude can do. Thanks Sarah, you gave me the start.

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  9. That first photo is the most glorious! The flowers make it extra spectacular and of course the fog. Obsessions... well... don't get me started but right now hubby is obsessing about RVs to the extent I just want to go live with in the forest by myself for a few days. Right now my latest new obsession is drawing and trying to paint.

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  10. Wonderful images! The second one is my favorite. Right now I am drawing a blank on my obsessions...I know photography is one at the top of the list...I will have to think about it more and get back with you. :)

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  11. I am more of an anti focus person...my interests jump all over and I finally decided to quit fighting it and embrace it and I love the permission I've received to just keep jumping to wherever I want to land! I love your image of the walk with your words about your long list, perfect!

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  12. Beautiful, peaceful photos! I love the first one; the house in the fog! I'd love to be there with a good book and a warm fire! Obsessions? I would say capturing the details and surprises of nature, finding new places to explore, and water.

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  13. You've compiled quite the list for your obsessions and I hope you achieve what you hope for. The foggy photo at the top is my favourite for the little house appeals to me.

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Thank you so much for visiting today and taking the time to read my thoughts on life. :)