DO NOT ADJUST YOUR SETS!
All of these photos are lower res images taken from a phone.
I wanted to post something different. Something a bit more connected to where it all began. Riding my bike and taking photos of bike related stuff.
Things seem to be becoming more and more entwined with themselves recently. Patterns seem to be emerging that are finally making sense and falling in to place. Typically, any example other than photography and cycling evades me right now. Though it has had me thinking a lot more. Why do I seem to worry about all the wrong things? I've been obsessing over the tiniest of inconveniences.
Please allow me to explain.
Despite my efforts of carrying naff point and shoots, photography only really became a thing for me when I started carrying a camera phone. The invention of the camera phone revolutionised days/nights out galavanting. Once smart phones became a thing, Instagram soon followed. This is when I really started to concentrate on photography. Framing became a thing and applying filters was a real novelty. Soon I gained a few followers, some from around the world, others from my own city. This grew into a nice little family when I started posting cycling related stuff.
I'd come up with the most hipster name I could think of to match my lifestyle... @beardedsprocket. My feed consisted of landscapes, cats, ships and vegan food. Bike photos remained consistent through out and slowly took over until I bought a real camera. Then it kind of became a mish mash of people and random shit.
Now though it seems to be back to cycling related stuff, and I'm really stoked!
This is where everything seems to have fallen into place and I've found some form of balance.
See, for me to reset and free my mind, I need to be moving. Like going on a road trip or a long ride. I like to travel all the back routes and rat runs. Motorways in the car are boring. They make me feel as if I'm being forced to move at the same pace as other people. You can't stop to do anything, unless it's spending money or taking a piss. Less travelled roads provide richer scenery and the chance to take it all in. These are the places where my I feel most at home. These are the places I feel most creative.
For a while I'd started to ruin these journeys for myself. I'd feel guilty for stepping away for a bit. I felt like I should be creating something. Using my time to make something epic. So I'd force myself to document every trip instead of clearing my head. This destroyed any form of creativity and led to another fiasco. Driving was spent wishing I'd ditched the car and cycled. Then cycling saw me wishing for my camera, conveniently on the seat next to me in the car. This became a stupid, frustrating battle. Which then turned into a maddening obsession. I'd wound myself up so much I wanted to buy a smaller camera specifically for cycling and road trips. In hope that I'd have something on me at all times that was still capable of producing professional results. Fucking stupid I know.
Then it all clicked.
My phone at this time, was held together with electrical tape and costing me fifty quid a month. It had become super buggy and both cameras were royally fucked. I decided to put a new camera on hold and look for a better phone and contract. This is where my big sister saved the day and kindly gave me her old iPhone 5 (Thank you Smeg! I seriously owe you!!!). New phone, then a new contract and I was set. A new, useable phone with a camera on it.
A small... Pocketable camera... Perfect for the bike... Why buy a camera when I can use a phone? It's a bit amateur isn't it? Bit "Uncle Bob"?! Loads of other people do it though, right?
It fits the saying, "The best camera is the one you have with you".
I've always been snobby about "phoneography", I've always thought of it as a lazy way to take photographs... However, Im being swayed. Though a phone will never compete with a proper camera, I've kinda grown to like that now. I like the fact that it's not professional. It takes the pressure off. It makes things fun. It works well as a tool for scouting locations for proper shoots. Like how Polaroids were to Hasselblads. I like the messiness that comes with it all, I find it charming. It's just there for the daft moments and the odd landscape shot.
It sounds really daft, but now I have small functioning camera, I'm able to go out and leave the world behind again. That sounds ridiculous. I'm happy to have it and not need it, rather than need it and not have it. Now if a memory isn't going to do it justice, I can capture it. Just like it used to be when I first started. If not, I can use it as a reference when returning on another trip with proper kit.
That's a nice example of how things have been falling into place recently. Something as simple as my sister giving me a phone, setting off a chain of events. Helping me re-evaluate my situation. Making me realise I was getting so caught up in the small things again. When really, I should focusing on what matters.
My wife, my family, the place I call home. I'm so very lucky and grateful for everything that surrounds me. When I first started following this dream, I was hell bent on being successful. Though back then success was shooting Leicas' and driving an Audi. Now, success is being happy. Being able to join my wife in significant events. Being able to do something because I love it, not because I have to. Everything else is just an added bonus. Like saving money and having the option of riding bikes with my best mate... Taking stupid photos along the way.
I've spent more time riding than driving recently. I think it's helped calm my frantic mind. In turn, I feel content knowing there are some things out of my control. I've accepted that what will be, will be. Whether it's work or just general living, things become a lot messier for me when I'm frantically pulling at the reigns.
Sometimes it helps to get lost so you can find your way.