In the vast realm of online sharing, the vulnerability of photographers unfolds like a delicate flower. I’ve sensed this trepidation not only within myself but echoed in the voices of fellow photographers during interviews. The fear of having our innermost selves judged by strangers is, indeed, a daunting prospect.
For me, photography is more than a visual art; it’s my therapy, a rhythmic dance with the lens that slows down my naturally hypersensitive mind—usually racing at 190mph. It’s a sacred process, a means to find solace in the intricate interplay of light and shadows, the artistry of composition, and the enchanting way lenses capture the world’s essence as it shifts from day to night.
Being an introvert and a highly sensitive person, I find solace in capturing the simplicity of my rural life—trees, flora, fauna, and the animals that grace my everyday existence. Photography, for me, has evolved into a profound learning experience, offering an escape from the chaos of life into a tranquil space where gratitude, focus, and daily blessings manifest.
Yet, amidst this personal sanctuary, I encountered an unexpected twist—unsolicited advice from an online stranger. Someone who, without knowing me personally, dictated what I should photograph and share. An intriguing experience, to say the least.
In the face of this external influence, I stand firm in my belief that my creations are for me. While occasional sessions for friends and family support my passion, my primary focus is on crafting images that bring me joy. Am I the most talented photographer, creating award-winning masterpieces? Absolutely not, and that’s perfectly fine. My objective isn’t to impress or entertain; it’s to find the promised peace that Jesus envisioned for me, to live a life worth living, and to be the happiest version of myself.
The recent viewing of Fujifilm’s documentary, “Reflections,” further solidified the transformative power of photography. Witnessing Pilar Silvestre’s journey, where photography became the key to overcoming a dark period, resonated deeply within me. Her story reinforced my belief in the healing potential of artistic expression.
While criticism and learning are welcomed, the perplexity arises when judgment comes from those who believe they understand you. Navigating the vast landscape of social media, I choose compassion when approaching the creative expressions of others. A positive comment arises when moved, or I simply move on silently.
In a world where hurtful comments abound, I implore others to pause and consider the impact of their words. Kindness and constructive criticism hold far more power than thoughtless negativity. We seldom comprehend the battles others are fighting, and a bit of empathy can go a long way.
To those hesitant to share their artistic creations online, fear not. Let your light shine unabashedly, regardless of negativity or hurtful comments. In a world where negativity often stems from internal struggles, trust in your light and live freely within it.
Your world is transformed by your example and not your opinion.“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
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