Once you start creating, your creation takes a life of it’s own. I created this blog to share my thoughts. After a few posts directed to this purpose, the blog went on to live the life of a nature photography blog as I discovered a love for photography and bought a DSLR. This blog means a lot to me – it was the very first time I reached out to the world. It allowed me to explore my interests. Before the blog, I was a person who was solely focused on academics, with no hobbies or other talents.
There was a time when I wanted to do so much on one blog space. I wanted to write long carefully composed posts on topics that consumed me – from school and from life. I wanted to share more of myself. At the same time I wanted it to stay a nature photography blog because it was beautiful, I wanted to add more species and more details. When someone followed the blog I was not sure what they are followed me for. Did they follow me for the photography, for the words, or for those travel photos? Didn’t most successful blogs have a main focus? Not a jumble of a single persons varied interests. Should I be curating for what an audience might enjoy? But I started with none.
I am not sure whether to take back the blog and ‘own it’ in a new way or to think of it as a space I have outgrown and explore other possibilities elsewhere. I took two small steps to diverge. I created a new travel blog, shamelessly called the same name Footprints of an Existence for now.
I joined instagram. yeah, you heard right. I strayed away to the new culture of snaps and no words. I’ve been posting there the time I was quiet in here. It helps me explore my creativity and it is great for times when I don’t carry the DSLR (which happens more and more as my DSLR has gotten rather rusty after all it’s expeditions. Click here. Maybe we can keep in touch in one of these new spaces?
There are aspects of me that never made it to the blog, that I now want to start unpacking. Yes, I have an intense MaryOliver-like connection to nature, yet I have gone on to study Social and Political Thought after studying Psychology. I want to start speaking about the ways in which the lives I live collide with each other and how difficult it is to present myself as a whole, rather than in fragments. I keep open to possibilities, including a re-owning of this space.
I started this blog as a space to express my feelings at a time I was down and isolated. As I explored my passions through this blog I realized my interest in photography. After a while I wanted it to be more than a documentation of an ordinary human exploring an ordinary life. I wanted to document all the bird photos I have made, all the good shots, I became obsessed with quality and technicality of what I shared. This kind of attitude often left me frustrated. I also lost my voice and presence. Photos had become just photos with an identification of a species and few bits of information.
Truth is I do have a huge passion for photography. After finishing university with high grades in Psychology, I felt completely lost. I traveled for 9 months yet I did not share a lot of my journey here. I fell quiet and I fell into despair as I could not see where my passions and my life would meet. Moreover, after returning from my travel I worked at a coffee chain to pay off a small percentage of my student debt and to live. The routine did not leave me too much time for introspection and in a way I was grateful for that, for every time I was left to myself I would dig deep into the feeling of being lost.
I feel ready again to go back to the basics. To enjoy life and to share what moves me. To write and to feel. To simply do things without expectation for return. Without ambition. In two weeks I will quit the job and travel to see my family before starting at university to study social and political thought. I do not know if it’s the right path, but it is a path that does not offend my soul too much. It is better than taking no action at all.
This is an acknowledgement of my own struggles in the past two years and a promise that I will go back to finding beauty in life (meeting-soul).
“In spite of everything, I shall rise again; I will take up my pencil, which I have forsaken in my great discouragement, and I will go on with my drawing. – Vincent van Gogh
I will pick up my camera, I will sit with my thoughts. Thanks for being with me.
Mary Oliver is perhaps my favorite poet. Here’s a poem of hers that I came across today, combined with some pictures (mostly my little sister’s photography). It’s a great poem for the times I am going through currently.
“I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
With your one wild and precious life?”
From “The summer day”
The paddy-field here is a space from my childhood that I still keep returning to. It means something to me. When people have moved all around the world, trees still stay in the same place. New paddy comes every year, the surrounding stays the same. .
Here, I lose sense of time (and many other things).
“What is it you plan to do, with your one wild and precious life?”