Evolution. A popular definition of evolution is “the gradual development of something, especially from a simple to a more complex form.” When I think about how photographers and artists evolve, this definition fits perfectly. The process is slow, sometimes painstakingly so, and to say it is complex, is an understatement. In her best selling book “Find Your Artistic Voice,” Lisa Congdon talks in great length about the challenges of becoming an artist. She says that “everyone’s path is different… it is never linear or smooth, in fact it can seem like a bumpy, repetitive cycle.” I know I can relate, can you?
At some point all creatives decide to, well… create. But the process from Beginner, to Master is definitely an evolutionary process. (I am not sure Master is the right word to use here, how about Beginner to Proficient? Feel free to substitute whatever word is comfortable for you.) Whatever sparked our interest in being creative in the first place sent us on quite a journey. We needed to learn the technical skills required to achieve the results we wanted, we had to attain the proper supplies or equipment, and then we had to practice, practice, practice. Eventually we needed to find our own voice, and eventually our artistic niche, and then market our precious work by sending it out into a very critical and sometimes judgmental world. As we constantly move towards a more complex “proficient” version of ourselves, we move further and further away from the simple beginner that we used to be. And it’s not for the faint of heart! It takes bravery to get there. It takes courage to evolve within this process.
The photograph that inspired this post consists of a sphere and it made me think about the cycles we go through as creatives and as human beings. Each one of us is constantly changing, and the temptation to resist these changes in our life is strong. If you are a creative you may have a deeper understanding of this than most anyone else. Trends in art and photography come and go like tides, trying to find and keep your artistic voice can feel like holding onto crashing waves. But instead of looking outside to find stability, I wanted to encourage you to look within. Whatever you create should be a reflection of the evolution happening inside you, not out there. Allow yourself to be wherever you are on your path, whether it be bumpy or smooth, it’s yours and yours alone. There is no fast track, there is no finish line. It is simply a cycle, one of constant evolution.
This image is called “Evolution,” it is an alcohol ink photographed using a Canon 6D, and a Canon EF Macro 100mm Lens, at F2.8. As always, my work is available to purchase, and I thank you in advance for supporting local artists.
Be well friends, enjoy your journey, and find peace wherever you are in your evolution.