What gives you Inspiration?

What gives you Inspiration?

“After it’s finished, sometimes I can trace a path that goes back to the possible source of inspiration.”

– Tracy Chapman

I actively try to forget my original inspiration. This is so I don’t judge my work against it.  Being a visual thinker with a vivid imagination I have to be careful that it doesn’t get in the way of making art.  For me, I prefer a much more organic approach. One where letting go of the original inspiration sets me free to judge my work purely for what it is.  I try. But I don’t always succeed.   

I remember so much about taking this photograph.  Even who was with me, Thea and Sandra.  Where we were. We had left Luderitz that morning.  I pulled our 4WD off the road in Namibia.  I shot from the drivers seat.  I was totally mesmerised by the depth enhanced by the wind blown sand.  Depth is one of the secrets to capturing attention.  This beautiful moonscape enchanted me.

So when I judge this photograph, am I judging the memories and my inspiration?  Is it now just a vivid reminder of that moment in time and that place.  If it is, then I really have to decide if I think it’s good because it reminds me so well or because it stands up on its own two feet.  How do I let go of the reminder of the memories.  I can’t.  So judging its quality is always flawed for me.  

I try so hard to be in the moment, enjoy the moment and to let go.   

I will be back in Namibia in March this year with a very lucky small group of photographers.  I say lucky as there is only a few of us.  So we can be highly mobile and very responsive.   If you want to join us you should book now before it’s too late.  

Photograph and text copyright © Len Metcalf 2018

Artist | Writer | Photographer | Educator | Adventurer