Baseball season is upon us. Working as a staff photographer at a newspaper a big part of your professional involves sports. Any sports fan knows about slumps, though the term is most often used in talking about our national pastime. The term also applies to photography. When you go out to make photos every day it’s inevitable that you’ll go through a time when no matter what you do your work doesn’t come out how you’d like. You find yourself in a slump. As a photojournalist and Kansas City Royals fan I can tell you there are few things more frustrating.
It’s frustrating because there is almost never an easy to point to, concrete reason that explains why this is happening, no simple answer to solving the problem. You just have to struggle though it until you reach the other side. It is a struggle. It is easy to succumb to despair when editing an assignment or gather clip contest entries and thinking to yourself, “Really? This is it? This is all I have?” Then without warning, without explanation, it’s over.
The last few months I’ve been slumping. Hard. Hated almost everything I was putting out. I just couldn’t SEE and I didn’t know why. I was blind. I felt like there was a curtain over my eyes. Then last week, it lifted. All of a sudden the curtain lifted. I could visualize, anticipate and SEE again. I don’t know why and, to be honest, right now I don’t care. I just hope it sticks around.
Does this mean everything is perfect? That I’m ecstatic about all of the work that I’m producing? Nope. Not even close. Part of living a creative life is never being satisfied. There really isn’t even anything all that great about the work I’ve done post slump. It isn’t the results as much as the process, the execution rather than the end result. I feel that I’m seeing clearer than I was before. That gives me the ability to concentrate on making great photos.
Here’s a few frame from the last couple of weeks. Elections, baseball, Messy Morning, a concert, Zombie Prom, a car crash and Cape Girardeau’s own take on the Color Run: Color Me Cape. Thanks for looking!