An innocent addict

Process of art is necessary evil to engage with, share experience of living



Engaging in art can cause the artist to lose touch with their own mental health needs.




“Are you aware that the word ‘passion’ means ‘suffering’?” said Victor Hugo, french novelist and poet. I often ask myself when my art form became a passion. When did the thing that brings me joy become my addiction, wearing me thin and leaving me hungry for the opportunity to beat what I have done before.

Art is a constant uphill battle, no matter the medium. One finishes a piece and stands back to analyze it. I am sure some have learned to be gentle with themselves, but I have not. From the moment it’s done, I am thinking of how it can be better and wondering why I can’t make things exactly how I want in my head. What is missing? Looking back though, I often find I have lied to my myself about what I needed the photo to say in the moment and told the truth about what I felt in the photographs I have captured. There is a dilemma of self.







At some point, you have to look at what is happening around you. A necessary evil to find the next source of inspiration. I pick my poison: Pinterest, Instagram or TikTok. What are the other artists doing? Am I good enough to make it? Will people like what I do? It propels me forward while filling my heart with ink that can’t be rubbed out and gets blacker and blacker with the hope of what I could be one day. The second dilemma is competition.







Looking back, there is a lot of happiness. There are times when the past feels like a dream. The Happiness Lab, a podcast from a Yale professor, talks about how we romanticize the past to make it seem better than it was. It is difficult to remember the past had its own hardships I had to overcome. I look at the beautiful pieces I completed, which I was once so critical of, and find new beauty in them. I find youth, life and nostalgia. It is important to remember the past is something I should enjoy, although it is not something to dwell on and compare myself too drastically to, because it is rarely as accurate as it seems. The third dilemma is the past.











Many of my works are portraits and landscapes. A large part of photography is being an opportunist I sometimes wonder if the images I capture have anything to do with me or if I have just happened upon an interesting situation. Is the model I took a picture of the only reason this image can be considered art? I think people are beautiful myself, which is one of the reasons they are my favorite subject. Is the landscape and light the only reason this picture is art? I have a hard time trusting the notion that an image is made up of angles and times, all chosen by me for an idea. I need to remember no picture I take will ever be replicated, making it mine in a special way. The fourth dilemma is the imposter feeling.





Will the dream die out? Will the once burning fire for meaning go out as I step out into the world where responsibility takes hold. If I stop, does that make the art I did, which may never make it into a space to be looked at, less significant. If I stop, will I be consumed by the shadows in my mind that have no way to be released? Will they sneak up on me when I think I am at my best and convince me my life is an endless vat of nothing that no will every remember? The fact about the future is it is not set in stone. It comes and then it will go with nothing to hold it back. Only questions can be formed, and even then there is no point in deliberating. The fifth dilemma is the future.

I hadn’t looked at myself in a long time. I was busy, rushing around to get everything I needed to accomplish in my life. I had work, a side project, friends and my passion. I did not stop during the day. I was setting up to do a shoot at 9 p.m., all alone in my garage, because I had a goal to post something at least three times a week for consistency. I had bought a dress to do a vintage shoot with a fan whipping my hair around. Nothing was working the way I wanted it to. Then, I looked at myself. I saw for the first time in a while just how worn and tired I looked. A toll had been taken. The last dilemma is the toll.

So, despite all of the dilemmas, why on earth is this addiction so enticing? The dawn comes and the sun comes out. You meet people you never would have otherwise. There is nothing which can compare with learning about people’s passions and capturing the moments, which represent the lives we live and the earth we live on. There is no way to experience all of life if there are not high highs and low lows. There need to be dark nights with beautiful stars sprinkled around. I am not really a photographer in my core, I am a human, formed from the molecules of the universe and given breath by the man I believe created it all. I was given a gift by him so I can capture the full spectrum of life he created and I intend to do my best sharing that essence of life with anyone who is willing to delve into what it means to be alive.