I would like to wish all of you a very happy new year filled with optimism, prosperity, good health, serenity, and peace of mind (that last attribute is a diplomatic alternative of saying “sustainable sanity”).
The title of my first blog article for 2022 occurred to me shortly before typing. New Year’s Day has historically been my favorite holiday of the year, a definitive occasion when we can reset ourselves or certain aspects of our lives. It’s an opportunity to start fresh, or refresh, and commence a new course of our choice. An immediate or sudden change of course is the definition of a “veer”.
Personally and professionally, I’ve frequently been thinking about when the time will come to veer in terms of my outlook and worldview, both of which have been much more cynical and pessimistic in recent years for several reasons. My fear is that I do not want those dark attitudes to infect my photography, but — (and this just occurred to me in a shock) — I am uncertain whether they have already and I am unaware or oblivious. TIA International Photography is an extension of my mind and soul, so who’s to say? I suppose I’m the only one who really knows.
As a result, whatever the case may be, a change in course is in order and a beneficial, self-imposed recommendation. More importantly, I will need to hold myself accountable to stay “off course” from the one I’ve been charting in previous years.
As of this month, “La Vue Atypique” has been around for a decade. (I just re-read my first article, aptly titled “In the Beginning”. I sound like the stereotypical new, naive student who has relocated from a small town in a very small country few have ever heard of to a massive metropolitan city in an ancient behemoth of a nation).
I still have very few subscribers for this blog, but those who have stayed onboard and read my articles (thanks!) probably know I’m fairly introspective. At the same time, I try to be as mindful as possible to not get too verbose as my mission is to share my photography with you.
In the past, I used to pose photography challenges for myself with each new year, partially for the fun of it, but also to actually challenge myself via discipline. In 2014, I challenged myself to take at least one photo every day, which actually turned out to be a massive success as I only missed one day due to being on a flight between Sydney and Los Angeles. (In retrospect, it was humorously the one day I had the most time to take a picture, given the 19-hour difference between the two cities while crossing over the International Date Line and going back in time).
In 2015, I assigned myself a much more daunting task — approaching 100 strangers and asking permission to capture their portrait and obtain a personal quote or saying that held a special meaning to them. I failed with this project and explain the reasons on my official website. (Now I wonder if some of my present-day pessimism started then).
In 2022, I have decided to re-embark on another challenge, but it will pertain to my blog specifically. My goal is to select one photo from my inventory each week (regardless of when it was captured) and write anything in relation to the photograph — such as the story behind it, or sharing a memory the photo triggers, or anything that comes to mind. The point is to be consistent with adding content to the blog. By December, I should have a minimum of 52 articles. (This article will serve as the first). I already know what the name of this new series will be, and that will be revealed next week.
The bottom line is that I think I’m doing myself a disservice by being constantly cynical, distrusting, and apocalyptic in my views about people and the world. It’s unhealthy and mentally debilitating. I don’t want that for myself so I have to put a stop to it. Maybe this new project can serve as a barometer of my progress?
Alas, I hope 2022 will definitely be a Happy New Veer.
See you next week.