I am just about to start our first photographic day of the Namibian Photography Safari. I was thinking about what photographs my clients will want to take. A question I will soon be asking them. I stopped to think about mine. What is my 'shot list' for this trip?
Do you know, I don't have one?
It has taken me years to learn to let go of a shot list. While I would love a photograph of a cheetah or a leopard, I don't hang onto that. Why? To avoid the disappointment, of course. I can't stand beating myself over the head about not getting a particular shot. It is a needless worry.
In all of my travels here, I might not even see one. So, why hang on to it.
Instead, my goal for the trip is to take some beautiful photographs. Period.
I want to be present and do my best, to listen to my intuition and create the best work I can. With a clearer head without all of those imagined photographs, I am freer to see, look and create.
I want to be open to the opportunity of chance. They say chance favours the prepared mind. Well, I am prepared. All of my cards are empty, all of my batteries are charged. Three cameras with different lenses sit ready for action in my camera pack. Later tonight, I will clean my lenses with great care and check the settings on my cameras.
I can't wait. A long day's drive tomorrow sees us at Sossusvlei. This time tomorrow I will have a huge sand dune in front of me. Exciting. This is what photography is about for me. Enjoyment. Fun. Creation.
Seal on the coast of South Africa. Photograph and text copyright © Len Metcalf 2018
Artist | Writer | Photographer | Educator | Adventurer