Monday, July 1, 2013

Photo Heart Connection

Linking with Kat for this month's Photo Heart Connection. Thank you Kat.
This linky has grown to be a favorite for me.  I've enjoyed Kat's Find Your Eye series of classes very much-PHC feels like that experience revisited.  I've met some sincere friends thru the classes-those that journeyed with me.  I connect with them here in this forum, or maybe even more often, but definitely for a check-in.  I like that.

The Curtain
The Curtain
Choosing the monthly PHC image is a crap shoot for me. That doesn't sound very nice, but it's true. The image I'm sharing today is not the one I thought might be "it" yesterday. And for the last few days, the "it" has been changing.
This morning The Curtain is it.  I didn't know why at first,  I just knew it. I recently bought two new lenses-yay me-using money I earned selling books and calendars from Cuba.  I decided to put those dollars into better equipment.  While my "better" lenses are only a jump to like advanced beginner status, that's what I could afford. I think I've used my kit lens to it's fullest and it's nice to move up a notch.
OK-yah.  What the hell do curtains and lenses have to do with one another?  you might ask if you haven't already bailed out on my lengthy writing.  (You're so good to me). 
My connection: I was showing a friend my new lenses.  She's interested in photography and has sort of fallen off the bandwagon.  Her camera is broken.  Done.  She's considering something new, but having a hard time keeping the energy going for that.  I think it's like when you stop going to the gym, it's really hard to maintain the motivation to get back to that routine and sustain it.
My impulse images are often my best-this is one.  I was explaining to her "see blah, blah, blah this can do longer this or sharper that or wider aperture blah, blah.  So I could just point at that curtain, snap, and there it is".
Later I realized that curtain shot was pretty good.  Light, subtle contrasts, etc.
I am good at explaining things.  Things I understand.  This photo again reminds me of how much I enjoyed being a teacher-how I have a passion for that.  I have no passion for my current work.  It is hard to go to work day after day when it's killing you little by little from the inside out.
I would like to return to teaching music but I can't.  My hearing loss was sudden and severe.  Sound is all distorted such that I can't tell if I'm singing the right notes, and I can't tell if someone else is either.  I can't help children learn about sounds they hear and make, if I can't hear them myself.  I can't hear well enough to take on a room full of students even in a different subject. It just won't work. I can't hear what they're saying unless I can fill in the blanks by reading lips when they're standing nearby, even wearing high quality hearing aids.
My hearing loss did however lead me to photography.  Finding a new way to be creative-with a different sense I'd never paid attention to.  I'd like to do some teaching about photography and taking images.  People get so wigged out about shooting manual.  I recently went on a photowalk with a friend and took her from shooting automatic to manual in an hour and a half.
I'm sure you might be thinking "leap of faith"  "go get it" "what are you waiting for?" "adult ed" and all those other encouraging things.  Thank you for that BUT for me teaching works when I feel prepared, and feels horrible when I'm not.  This is a seed.  The end product needs to find vision, structure, content that will work-that I can do with confidence.  I need to understand ALL the features on my own camera, and a Nikon which is same, but with controls reached in different ways, and I suppose with iphones that many are using exclusively and I've been unable to shoot anything but my shoe with.  I also want this to offer me some profit.  I like working, but not for no money.  I am doubtful I can do this as my job, but maybe it will take some of the edge off that other job I hate or lead to a different avenue.
So, this curtain is a reminder, a nudger, a seed-that may grow or morph or sit deep in the ground like winter waiting to break forth.   We'll see.  I do know that it has to come from me and no one else, despite those who want to help and to urge me on.  I appreciate that, but it makes it hard to hear what my heart is saying.
I wrote this for me not you, but if you read it to the bottom, much appreciated.  You're awesome.
Hope your PHC was fruitful this month too or if you're coming thru a different path that you may think about joining this practice.  It almost always reveals something.


Sarah Huizenga said...

WOW! I feel like I know you on a whole different level after reading this. You WILL do it when you are ready and the time is right. I have complete faith in that :)

Tamar SB said...

This post was just so touching and so beautiful! I am so glad that the sucky situation of losing your hearing led you to photography. I so enjoy seeing your images! here's to many more amazing images!

Cathy H. said...

Life throws some hard punches, doesn't it! I love your photography and know that when and if the time is right you'll make a great teacher. I know you could teach me a few things!! And, I'm glad that you took up photography, otherwise, I wouldn't know you!!

gina said...

Wow -- look how this image led you to tell us your story! Very heartfelt! Sorry that you feel trapped in a "sucky" job, but I have a strong feeling you will find a way out. You've planted a seed, and it will grow! You seem to have a deep understanding of photography, and you've taught me, just by sharing your comments and images. Thank you!

p.s. What kind of lens did you get?

Kay L. Davies said...

I love the curtain photo, Susan, but I love the story about it—and you—even better. I already knew some of the things, but this tells so much.
One of my best friends lost her sight last year. She has a tiny bit of peripheral vision in one eye, and still uses her computer. I'm going out to see her soon, and hope I don't cry. She was a fabulous photographer. She sewed her own clothes, and made beautiful quilts. Last week she got all excited about being able to thread her sewing machine with a threader gizmo.
I am in awe of people like you and my friend. I was never much of a photographer, but I enjoyed doing it, and can't since I had surgery on both eyes, but at least I can see enough to be able to post my husband's photos on my blog, and to enjoy other photos, like yours.
I laughed today because my niece posted two photos on Facebook—photos she had taken OF her new Nikon, not WITH it. LOL

bgottsab said...

Beautifully written in true Susan fashion. I am glad this image lit that tiny spark - a way to see a possible future in photographic teaching. While encouragement from others can be helpful, I do think we all have to walk our own path in a way that feels right to us. Keep listening to your heart - it will speak the truth.

Zena said...

Wonderful post. I know what you´re talking about, I´ve been a teacher for a long time now and I love it but sometimes I don´t likes that much the enviroment of the place where I have to work. Many times I have thought to start a new path and offer what I really want to teach in a different place, maybe a place of my own, but as you, I need to be sure about what I can do, the way I can do it and so on. But the right moment will arrive for you and hopefully for me.

Zena said...

PS: Gorgeous photo and a fabulous photo-heart connection

Carol Blackburn said...

So glad you poured your heart out Susan. It must feel at least a little lighter. This is why I tell my grandchildren to find what you love to do and work toward doing it as your job and you will be happy. Wish I had some sage advice for you but I really can't remember any. Guess I didn't learn any.....:( Keep on keepin' on!

Prairie Jill said...

Thank you for a beautiful image and a beautiful post.

Gotham Girl said...

Really really enjoyed this post. And oh how I love that image! Great PHC!!!

Michele Matucheski said...

Thank you for sharing all that. It's apparent that you are a gifted teacher. May that never go away! It also made me think of doors closing and windows opening ... You found the photography window when the music door closed. Enjoy the new path!
--Michele at Sweet Leaf, visiting from PHC

Sweepy said...

Woof, Susan, I am losing my sense of sight, hearing and smelling intruders. I am retired pffft.

I think your photographs tell stories and I am glad you both found each other.

Deborah Tisch said...

Thank you for sharing this part of your story. This image is fabulous.
And I'm glad we took Kat's class all that long ago and became friends!

rakusribut said...

your image is stunning and the story that goes with it makes it even more impressive.
i keep looking at that curtain and wondering what's behind it....:-() like a veil that you can lift in order to see your future somewhere in the distance....
thank you for sharing this image

Love 2Bs said...

New to Photo-Heart Connection and so glad I found my way to you. Your story is very touching and inspiring and I hope photography continues to bring you the artistic expression you are missing in voice.

Kat Sloma said...

It is a seed. That's the perfect start. Seeds grow and change and become something else. I start with idea seeds and I leave them in the ground for a while, watering and fertilizing and seeing what comes up and what doesn't. They don't all come up, they don't all grow to maturity, but you have to plant them to begin with.

I've found that finding happiness in my creative life extends my happiness into other areas. So keep planting these seeds, some will grow. Thanks for sharing in the Photo-Heart Connection, and sorry for my delay in coming by. I'm catching up on June along with July!