Monday, June 22, 2009

Freshman Syndrome

(Click on the thumbnail for the bigger, better version)

Last week, I found myself thinking that it would be nice to take a day off from photography. I looked at my file folders for the month of June and thought I might like to give the whole thing rest for a couple of days running. But, a funny thing happen on the way to the weekend. My schedule filled up and I find myself filling CF cards, processing, and reviewing as though there were nothing else in the world to do. Each day,there was something that got me out and motivated me to come straight home and review the “day’s catch”.

Now, I am facing a deadline for SoFoBoMo that looms all too close. Here it is the 22nd and I have only until Saturday the 28th to complete all my editing, processing, layout, and text. I feel like the college freshmen who has goofed off—perhaps partied—until the night before the exam, or the term paper is due. Only, in my case, I got stuck in the stacks in the library, or lost in the lab—deeply absorbed in other learning projects and forgot to focus on my assignment. I am learning about western style riding events and having an opportunity to photograph them frequently. Just last Friday, a friend called to alert me to a small herd of elk just a couple of miles away, and off The Husband and I scooted to spend at least half an hour admiring the five bulls so close to us. Too many opportunities, and so much to learn.

Of course, I don’t have to complete the book. It is, after all, a self-assignment and neither Paul Butzi, nor anyone else, issues failing grades for anyone who opts out. My problem is that I really want very much to finish this. It’s just that I want to do all these things—my SoFoBoMo project, the equine events in our area, and continue with all my other nature photography. I need fourteen days in my weeks.

What I am left with, is that I will complete my project in some form. It appears certain that it will not come close to my original expectations, but it will be a start; and, because I am very much attached to Oak Canyon Trail now, I will continue my mission in some form or another as time passes.


  1. It doesn't sound as you have too much problems, more like business as usual. :) All these other projects your fancy - if they don't provide your bread and butter, they will likely benefit from waiting a while for your attention. When sofobomo is over and done, you will have no problems in the world and plenty of time to focus on other projects. The world will smile with you. Hahaha, yes, I know, this would be case in the best of worlds anyway. I hope you make it!

  2. It looks like you have been busy and having a lot of fun lately.

    On the SoFoBoMo front I understand your issues.

    This year because of a couple of uncontrollable events I had to rethink my process for the photo book.

    I will complete it even though it will not represent my best works to date. When you are limited to shooting for a couple of hours there is only so much you can expect.

    But I will tell a story and I did try my best and I did enjoy the process. Hope to be finished by the beginning of next week.

    I am not worrying about where I will place on the Wow factor scale. I hope some will find it slightly interesting.

    I did learn again from the process which is the most important part. And also I did slip a few days with the total time but completing the book is for me more important than dropping out because of a deadline I could not keep.


  3. I hope you decide to finish it, even with reduced expectations, because I'm looking forward to seeing it :)

  4. Hi Anita, Perhaps a few days off would be more stressful then restful if you're focus was on photo opportunities missed.

    From glimpses we see via this portal "Through My Lens" you're involved in creative and beautiful work. As sailors know, It's hard to lower the sails when there's a steady wind at your back. ~smile~

    I love those purple flowers against the dark blue/green background.

  5. Ove - "Business as usual"—oh, wow, you summed me up perfectly! You have provided some good advice.

  6. Niels - I have been having fun and anything that sounds like complaining would be the equivalent of a child whining about too many birthday parties and too much cake with ice cream.

    I look forward to seeing your book.

  7. Rakesh - I have every intention of completing the book in some form or another, even if it is far short of my personal mark. It has already been part of a valuable process.

  8. Earl - I like very much that sailors' wisdom. Indeed, the wind has been at my back. I have crammed a great number of experiences into a relatively short period of time. There will be a lull—those are inevitable and plenty of time then to reflect.

    I am delighted that you like the purple flowers. They are a marvelous element in our environment.

  9. If it'll help, I'll be happy to issue a failing grade if you don't get the book done.

    imperfectly done is better than perfectly unfinished.

  10. Don't get all stressed out about not finishing by the date. I'm sure that you'll finish, besides, you have a lot of interesting irons in the fire! It sounds like you are having a heck of a good time! :-)

  11. Gordon - Drat. I should have known some wise guy would step up to issue that failing grade.:)

    Love the summation.

  12. Paul - I am having a grand time. Borrowing Earl's thought, the wind is at my back—just blowing hard enough that I sometimes lose my balance! Still, I am laughing all the way.

    I'm not really stressed out—just greedy.

  13. Well then, Anita: Sail on to that glorious photo buffet and eat heartily!!! :-)

  14. Paul - A great image! Thank goodness there is no real penalty for gorging at the "photo buffet"—in the "real" world, eating at this level would make me the size of a blimp.

  15. Hey, no fair with the teasing. You talk of seeing a nice herd of elk and you post a flower? What gives? :-)

  16. Mark - It's great to hear from you. I was thinking about you yesterday. I hope your spirits are gradually being lifted.

    As for my post, I can only say, "Uh oh. Busted." I thought I had sneaked by on that.

    I confess that I have never processed that batch of photos. I may not have anything worthy. They were a good distance from us. But, as soon as I put this SoFoBoMo book to bed, I will be checking that out. That is, if I am still functional at that point.

  17. Anita,

    I thoroughly enjoy following your journeys, thank you for sharing. Its nice to hear you've found value in the venture, whether you finish or not--but I hope you do, if that is what you want to do.

    I think I'm looking forward to SoFoMoBo'ing myself next year.

    comment left by Mary Ann/qpb at

    Mary Ann,

    Somehow, I messed up and dumped your your post. ??? So I am posting a copy from my e-mail.

    Thanks for your comments. I hope you will join in the SoFoBoMo project next year. It's a great adventure.


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