"There's no need to be perfect to inspire others. Let people get inspired by how you deal with your imperfections."I recently came across this quote in the large storeroom that is my inspiration/quote board on Pinterest. I was looking for the perfect quote to go with this photo on Instagram...
I instantly identified with the words, even if it might not be the perfect quote for the photo.
You see I am just coming off a ten-day e-course on conceptual photography with the amazing Catherine Just called Begin Deepening. While conceptual photography is not something that I plan to add to my current work, the course was instrumental in showing me some things that I knew, things I had even written down a time or two, but like they say seeing is believing.
I have always aimed in this space to be as real and honest as I can. My life isn't just pretty pictures and thoughtful stories, there are fears, huge fears, tons of resistance, guilt, and lots of imperfection. In keeping with my nature, I thought I would share with you some of the things I learned about myself in this ten-day course. My hope in sharing, is that someone else will read the words and think "oh, thank goodness, she feels like that too."
My secret is that I walk to escape, I walk to be alone. My truth is that I walk to find myself.
It is in that time alone that I have the space and the clarity to look deep inside myself and discover things about myself and my work. I love my family and friends, but I HAVE to have that time alone to find creative inspiration.
Through my already extensive journaling process, and Catherine's prompts, I built this rock cairn. The rock cairn symbolizes my blog; a place where I stack pretty pictures and words, one on top of the other, creating something beautiful. In theory there is nothing wrong with something pretty, until it holds you back from doing something. My blog like the rock cairn is a safe place, a place where everyone likes me and gives me wonderful words of encouragement. Between the layers though, are shadows, in the shadows lives fear. Fear of failing, but even worse, fear of succeeding if I leave the safe place of my blog and put my work out into the wider world.
It is time to start dismantling the cairn (don't worry the blog isn't going anywhere) and taking those precious stones that are my beloved stories and start sending them out in the world, sending them skipping out across the water, letting them land where they may, and start to make ripples outward.
Enough talk, it is time to take action...so... I am working on a story that I WILL submit to Bella Grace by the January 15 deadline. I would love some accountability, so...if you think of it, email me on January 14, 15 or 16 and see if I held true to my word. I am ready to face that fear that lives in the shadows, either the fear of failure or the fear of success, which ever it may be. Either way I am going to start skipping stones/stories out across the water this next year.
My journey over the last four years has been a long one and certainly not a straight one. Most times there was no clear end in sight, but the last few months have been a turning point for me. I now have a straighter path, and a clearer destination to journey towards.
Some of the other days from the course I am still digging deeper into, but I hope to share some of those thoughts before the end of the year.
If you are curious about what a course like this could do for you, there is another one starting on Monday, November 30 with Henry Lohmeyer who has a partnership with Catherine Just. His e-course is called Still, check it out here. I'll be there.