For a change, before I get back to doing portraits, I processed this shot from my 2009 trip to Northern Spain. This was actually taken in Biarritz, France, a short motor ride from San Sebastian in the Basque region. The beach below is a nudist beach of which there are many in both Spain and France, their cultures much more open to nudity than the U.S. or the Philippines.
I’m halfway through the last creativeLive workshop of the year, an inspiring one by entertainment photographer, Jeremy Cowert. You can check his portfolio here:
He’s been a full-time photographers only since April 2005 but was a graphic designer for several years before that. His work shows the influence of his training and experience in graphic design. His photos remind me how photography especially digital photography can be that much closer to traditional art (whatever this means). He paints with light and color. I am still searching for my style and vision. The workshop reminded me that my first interest was in visual arts and drama. My younger sister loves to remind me of my childish productions when we were children and the drawings I made in grade school. I gave that up when I found that I couldn’t draw a straight line! But software now allows me to overcome my deficiency and return to the fundamentals of visual art: color, composition, and emotional impact of the whole.
I have not celebrated Christmas in traditional ways for years now. I do hang an evergreen wreath outside as a reminder of the return of life in the spring. Often I also invite people to a “gathering” to celebrate friendships and re-invoke the meaning of holy days (Christmas, Hanukkah, Pagan winter solstice, etc). My friends still give presents despite my asking them not to do this. What shopping I do is for food for the gathering, and last-minute purchases for my business. I can’t believe that I have been studying photography for almost two and a half years now. I’ve learned a lot but it seems there’s so much more to learn.
Cowert reminded me of something else. At the workshop today when asked what his goal was as a photographer, he replied: to be as good at his craft as he could be (and this was an ongoing goal) and to give back to the world. One of his recent projects was going on a Passion world tour:
The Manila portion of the tour:
He volunteers his photography skills, something I want to also do. He went to Haiti, for instance, during the acute relief effort to photograph the catastrophe to help solicit donations for the ravaged population. I should take this into serious consideration as I contemplate my own personal goals for the coming year. Year’s end has always been a time for envisioning what I want to accomplish. I don’t do lists anymore but take the time to “dream” where I want to be at next year’s end.