...it would sell a bomb if someone could bottle it...I mean you can buy all the kit in the world, spend your pocket money on the latest gadgetry or wizard wheeze, but what you really need, isn't available to buy. It's that allusive inspiration. I do so wish they sold jars of it at Sainsbury's so that I could buy a whole load and gorge myself on it regardless of calorie content. It seems to be very difficult to pin down, it escapes unannounced and reappears, when?
I truly love living in the Lake District for all manner of reasons. But to photograph it or 'the landscape' in general, is actually not very inspiring or exciting at all. I know this is a reflection of me rather than what is around me. My husband kindly offers some sympathetic advice, which I rudely shun with a childish 'tried that, doesn't work' retort. His suggestion actually makes a lot of sense and I have heard it suggested in the past on the OCA and flickr fora. I should take more heed, he suggests I get myself out, camera in hand, enjoy the day, and something along the way will inspire me enough to photograph it...spring is happening all around, go and find it. He continues, 'you can't find inspiration sitting in front of this', pointing at my large, but undeniably attractive, screen. Yep, true. But my negative mindset affords no window for inspiration.
So to test this well intentioned advice I head out to Cogra Moss taking two cameras and a tripod. The heat and direct sunlight have already made it a write-off in terms of taking any decent photographs. But anyway I didn't want that to stop me. I get there, sit down and wonder whether the environment can shift my mindset. The fishermen are knee deep in the water...I can hear the echoes of them singing happily to themselves as the fish jump freely all around them...the birds are sweeping past, tweeting joyously, the reflections in the still water of the vivid greens from the surrounding hills and crowds of midges dancing just there, right in front of my bloody nose...it was quite poetic to sit quietly amongst it all...I felt privileged to be there. Yes, I thoroughly enjoyed it for the ten minutes I allowed myself to do it (not good at sitting still for long). But it wasn't enough to inspire me to find anything I wanted to photograph. I tried half-heartedly, but really with no joy.
I returned home, a rucksack full of unused gear and a few new bites...happy to have gone, but disappointed to have not got anywhere with the camera...a self-fulfilling prophecy. So I get a bit fed up, because if I don't get my inspiration from this awe-inspiring environment around me, how do I summon it up and from where do I find it? Once you've shut down, how do you let the possibilities open up, how can you start to see things like a child again? I know I have had similar niggles in the past, so I'll find a way through I'm sure. But right now, whilst I have a bit of time to commit, I'd like to purchase some of that gold-plated inspiration...