I feel like my existential crises lead to one of two things:
1) Unmotivated paralysis
2) Frenzied, passionate hunt for purpose
Sometimes a mix of the two (which seems impossible and ends up in a lot of confusion).
I read about Richard Kozi Hernandez and I am galvanized by his responses and his approach to mobile photography. (Also, by the quotes paired with his photos).
“I would describe my process for making street images as purposefully aimless. My photographs are a simple by-product of my normal life. I don’t go out of my way to make images. Unless I spot a man in a fedora, then I’ll go out of my way. Don’t ask me why I love to take pictures of hats, I’m working that out with my therapist at the moment. [Insert chuckle here.]
My images are artifacts of my daily life. For me the hunt is always on. Picking my daughter up from school, a trip to the market or on my way to a meeting, it’s open season.
I’m a very reactionary image-maker. When my head and heart scream shoot, I shoot. Photography, for me, is about honoring the impulse to make an image, no matter what.
The “no matter what” wasn’t always an easy thing to act upon. Years ago, my head and heart would scream shoot, but another voice in me would yell back: “The light is bad. The composition isn’t perfect. The subject is too far away. What a silly picture, why would you make a photo of that?” It’s taken years, but I’ve honed my skill to shoot on impulse. This means having a camera in hand and ready at all times. For me, there is no better tool than my mobile phone.
Shoot. YES. YES. YES. Shoot. Shoot. YES.”
Here are the quotes from the captions under the fantastic photographs:
“Our bodies are our gardens. Our wills are our gardeners.” — William Shakespeare
“Depth must be hidden. Where? On the surface.” — Hugo von Hofmannsthal
“Everything that we see is a shadow cast by that which we do not see.” — Martin Luther King Jr.
“Action and reaction, ebb and flow, trial and error, change — this is the rhythm of living. Out of our over-confidence, fear; out of our fear, clearer vision, fresh hope. And out of hope, progress.” — Bruce Barton
“I am open to the guidance of synchronicity, and do not let expectations hinder my path.” — Dalai Lama
“I don’t believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive.” — Joseph Campbell
“To dance is to be out of yourself. Larger, more beautiful, more powerful.” — Agnes De Mille
“We can’t plan life. All we can do is be available for it.” — Lauryn Hill
“Without deep reflection one knows from daily life that one exists for other people.” — Albert Einstein
“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” — Carol Sobieski and Thomas Meehan, “Annie” writers
“It was a woman who drove me to drink. Come to think of it, I never did hang around to thank her for that. ‘Hey lady! Do I look all blurry to you? ‘Cause you look blurry to me!’ ” — Dean Martin
“I will not be just a tourist in the world of images, just watching images passing by which I cannot live in, love, possess as permanent sources of joy and ecstasy.” — Anais Nin
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” — Henry David Thoreau
“It is always the simple things that change our lives. And these things never happen when you are looking for them to happen. Life will reveal answers at the pace life wishes to do so. You feel like running, but life is on a stroll.” — Donald Miller
“Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.” — Gertrude Stein
“Never too old, never too bad, never too late, never too sick to start from scratch once again.” — Bikram Choudhury
“…Self-doubt. I despise it. I hold it in contempt, along with the hell-spawned ooze-pit of Resistance from which it crawled. I will NEVER back off. I will NEVER give the work anything less than 100%. If I go down in flames, so be it. I’ll be back.” — Steven Pressfield
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” — Steve Jobs
“A man’s errors are his portals of discovery.” — James Joyce
“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.” — Martin Luther King Jr.
“We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.” — Buddha
“Harmony makes small things grow, lack of it makes great things decay.”–Sallust
“Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint on it you can.”–Danny Kaye
“Constant repetition carries conviction.”–Robert Collier
“The world is all gates, all opportunities, strings of tension waiting to be struck.”– Ralph Waldo Emerson