A week of magical thinking

OK, so I haven’t been super creative or productive in the last week or so, there has been a lot of practical things that needed to get taken care of (like spending an entire day going to Jacksonville to have my photo and fingerprints taken for my green card renewal), time-consuming family emergencies (like trying to convince my husband that he’s not dying, he’s just crazy – I really hope he is just crazy) and a lot of time spent Skyping with friends and family.

Now, sometimes not being productive doesn’t mean not getting anything done, because since I very much live in my head, a lot of things can get resolved , even if not actually done, just by thinking and talking.

One of the major breakthroughs I had was when talking to my friend. She has recently started her own business and things seem to be going pretty great for her. She’s always really great to talk to, Ā mainly because she doesn’t worry too much about hurting my feelings and just calls me out on my BS excuses, which I really need.

One of the things that has really stifled me in my progress is the feeling that I need to have it all figured out before I launch, and that it has to be perfect. I suppose I fear that if I don’t I’m just going to prove myself every bit the failure and fraud I secretly ‘know’ I am (Yes, I too suffer from the impostor complex). What she told me is that when she started her business, she had a vague feeling of what she wanted to do, and asked herself what the minimum requirement to get started was (she makes awesome promotional films for companies to put on their websites), in her case it was a good camera. then she asked herself how do I go about getting a good camera ect. Basically just putting one foot in front of the other and start moving. It’s such a simple concept, but somehow I have it in my head that have to have every step of the marathon mapped out and analyzed in detail before I even start practice running. Surprisingly I have never run a marathon (it is however one of the things I would like to do, but I haven’t started planning yet).

Here are some of the key things I came away with from a week of thinking (and talking):

  1. Sometimes good enough is good enough. Nothing has to be perfect from the get go, you can go back and change it to something better later on. What matters is that you get out there.
  2. Stop making excuses. Yes it’s overwhelming and yes the dogs need to potty, and the kitchen is a mess. So make a work-schedule and put that stuff in there.
  3. Find a method to keep going even when motivation is at an all time low. I’m one of those people who find everything (and I mean everything) super interesting, so I can be really easy to distract with something new I absolutely need to learn about, or a new really interesting project I just thought up. This means I get really big gaps in my work and basically have to start over when I pick it back up.
  4. What do you want your life to be. One of the upsides of the husband being convinced he’s going to die soon, is that it really puts into perspective, how we spend whatever time we have on this planet.

I feel ready to take on the world, I am inspired to just throw myself out there and see where it takes me. I have taken some important steps to make that happen and am committed to seeing this through.

Do you have any key insights, awesome methods for staying motivated or anything related? Please share in the comments.

Which road to take, it doesn’t matter.

A friend posted this image in her FB feed earlier today and it’s a great reminder to just do and not get too wrapped up in planning or trying to figure out where you’re going. Just put one foot in front of the other and you’ll get there eventually.

Alice in Wonderland

A state of constant uncertainty

For as long as I can remember I have gone through phases, wanting to do one thing then something completely different. I have changed my mind so many times, in the beginning being very sure each time, that THIS time I was right, as time has passed I have become less and less certain, constantly questioning myself and whether this, as so often before, will just be a phase. Through the years of having this blog, it has mirrored life perfectly. Going through several such phases and back again, trying to figure out what I wanted to do with it.

I have gone through phases of high intensity passion and sharing every day, to long periods of not sharing at all. I have both sure and completely clueless about what, exactly, I wanted out of it. I have gone through the highs of getting likes and new followers after a post, and the destructive feeling of ‘what does it even matter’ after sharing and no one noticing or caring.

I have written restart posts before, signaling a new and better start, fueled by that high energy passion and with the best of intentions, but after not too long it all falls apart again. So what makes this time different? In all honestly, I don’t know that it will. What I do know is that I’m tired of going nowhere fast, I’m tired of looking back at my life the last couple of years, and all I see is that despite all the intentions and promises, that I’m exactly where I was. I’m tired of being ashamed every time I talk to friends because I know that they must see through all my intentions and see someone who just never follows through. I’m tired of feeling like a failure whenever I see my friends excel in their endeavors. I’m tired of being afraid of failing, and I’m tired of being afraid of trying.

So where am I going with all this? Right now I’m not entirely sure, and that’s ok. I have come to accept that constantly changing my mind about things, as well as the seemingly constant roller coaster of ups and downs, are just a part of who I am. So instead of trying to decide on a path forward, whether in life or this blog, I guess I’m just going to take it one day at a time and see where it takes me, and this blog is going to help me do exactly that. So from now on this is my creative journal, where I will share (probably mostly with myself) my attempts a reconnecting with my lost creative soul (omg, I actually just made myself a little sick, but I fail to find a better way to describe it, sorry).

How I lost my creative soul, is a whole different story, that I may write tomorrow, unless I decide to do something else.

 

 

If, for whatever reason, you have been reading this, and feel that it resonates with you somehow or you want to share your 2 cents or a recipe for you Grannys super delicious brownies to cheer me up, I look forward to hearing from you šŸ™‚

(If you think I’m an idiot that should just get my s**t together and stop whining, that is ok, but I don’t really need to hear it.)

 

 

 

Compositing – Cammack grain elevator

Cammack grain elevator Abandoned grain elevator in the small town of Cammack situated Northwest of Muncie IN.

 

Lately IĀ“ve been watching a bunch of photoshop courses on CreativeLive.com (for those of you that donĀ“t know about CreativeLive, itĀ“s free online courses, pretty cool stuff.) One of the things a lot of these courses has covered is compositing, something IĀ“ve never really dabbled in. Since the first course with the amazing Ben Willmore, IĀ“ve started to stitch some panoramas and done a bit of lightweight compositing. But this is the by far the most complicated one IĀ“ve done so far.

I started out with 10 images taken in the same spot, so the first objective was to narrow that down to only what was necessary to make the final image. This is the 3 images I ended up with (I wonĀ“t bore you with the ones that didnĀ“t make the cut).

Then it was time to put them together. This was no problem at all, photoshop has a neat feature called `auto-align layersĀ“ that basically does it for you. The only problem was that IĀ“m not always a very structured person so these photos were actually just initial test-shots and taken without a tripod, so even though they aligned pretty well there were a few places where the electrical lines (thereĀ“s a lot of them) didnĀ“t really line up. So I did a whole bunch of cutting, copying and pasting to make everything fit (and it didnĀ“t exactly make anything better that I decided that the wooden beam in the right side needed to go… more copy pasting and a lot of masks).

The telephone poles in both sides leans towards the middle of the image and obviously needed to get straightened. From all the PS courses I know that Photoshop has features that fixes that, I tried both liquify and puppy warp, but for the life of me I canĀ“t figure out how that work, so I ended up doing a bit more copy pasting and masking (In my small world that seems to be a universal fix it all).

After that it was smooth sailing, just a bit of added contrast, dodge and burn, adding some vignetting and a slight tweak of the colors.

ItĀ“s by no means perfect (especially along all the wires), but all things considered IĀ“m satisfied with the result.

If you want to weigh in with your opinion, IĀ“d love to hear it.

Candyfloss

Under construction

Under construction

The Norreport train station in Copenhagen is the busiest train station in Denmark. It is being rebuild to accommodate all the travelers. The rebuilding is being done in the evening and weekends, while still being functioning during the day.

Oconaluftee Visitors Center

Oconaluftee Visitors Center

On a day of pouring rain in late September, almost alone on the wet mountain roads and with Social DistortionĀ“s Highway 101 blasting on the stereo. We stopped at the Oconaluftee Visitors center for a little break before heading for Cherokee Nation.