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24 February 2014

Self Doubt - Even from One of the Greats.....

I limped along today after what can best be described as a terrible night's sleep.  Lots of caffeine got me through the trip to the Children's Hospital and the return trip.  I stop and think goodness, what a pansy I must suddenly sound like, it's only just over an hour each way!!!!  But I was just so tired I felt like to could barely keep my eyes open.  It seems every now and again events conspire to give me a night like this, after which I limp along feeling sad and miserable all day.

Because I've had a day tied up with my kids I've not gotten a lot of work done today.  I hear you ask "are you knuckling down tomorrow????"  "Yes I am" I say dutifully, then I hesitate and add with just a hint of defiance "after I've worked Archie in the morning...." 

I've rattled on about great photographers in the past.  And how they inspire me.  I've mentioned this man, Delly Carr, in a recent Blog Post too.  This is his final post from Sochi.  If you have time, you should read it.  I think Delly Carr is an amazing photographer and his point that he has done all of this freelance shouldn't be underestimated.  I've said it before that the freelance gig isn't always easy but he's clearly so lacking in arrogance and his comments on the mistakes he makes/made endearing.  This is a little excerpt, but please take the time to read his whole Blog:

"Russia, you have won me over in a weird perverse kind of way.

As an Aussie Alpha Male I am not ashamed to say that the Hockey match favourite moment was almost surpassed by the Russian ice dancing pair of  Elena Llinykh and Nikita Katsalapov doing Natalie Portman’s evil doppelganger ‘Black Swan’ to Tchaikovsky’s ‘Swan Lake’.  A plunging neckline, a black tutu, a tortured sorceress …. the Olympics got a bit darker and sexier. Just like my chocolate and coffee, I love Dark and Sexy.

I photographed the routine distracted by goosebumps and wonderment. ‘Swan Lake’, I finally get it.  The packed stadium was mesmerized. A standing emotional ovation. Tears welled into my eyes. My Alpha Male membership was revoked.
I photographed the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver Canada, and I thought rather poorly. I didn’t get what the sports were about. I couldn’t handle the cold. I partied too hard with my ITU buddies. The maple syrup was too sweet.

I came to Russia to redeem myself. To make peace with my work and the Winter Olympics.  Yet I bumbled my way throughout these Olympics in far greater degrees than before. I didn’t want to make the same mistakes twice, yet this time however I made them 5 or 6 times just to be sure.  I was never really comfortable or confident. Never a groove to dance to.  But I still walk away tall and proud....."
Delly Carr
I used to go about the racetrack keeping to myself and doing my own thing. I was too shy to talk to anyone in the Racing Industry apart from other photographers.  Even then, there were a number of photographers (mostly from the newspapers) who I was far too shy to talk to for ages and ages.  I used to look up to this group of photographers in awe. Rightly or wrongly I had some of them up on pretty decent pedestals too.  This was a bit silly, because at least in Melbourne most of them were  really lovely people.  Of course that's not to say that there weren't some huge egos and some pretty good displays of arrogance from time to time.

I tell myself that part of my awe was caused by their ability to come swaggering in with the benefit of Mr Murdoch's wallet (or Fairfax's wallet) which gave them access to some pretty amazing equipment, and their constant bylines in the papers.  It made me cross because I so desperately wanted to move to Melbourne and get a job with the papers photographing horses.  I'd been told (sort of recently actually) that I would never make it as a paper photographer, and that I wouldn't have what it takes.   I don't actually think this is true at all, but of course my children are my biggest hurdle when it comes to achieving career goals like this.  The impatient side of me (some will smile in amusement and say 'sorry, where does this mysterious patient side of you hide????') finds this hard at times although of course I will always put them first.

Still, it was hard not to be impressed back in those days. Some of these photographers had so much equipment they used trolleys!!!!  Back then I used to think 'goodness, you must be important if you have a trolley!!'.  Now I realise they were just being v v practical and sensible!!!!   I love my trolley!!!!  I especially love my trolley when I do not send an octopus strap crashing into my jaw (which of course made me frantic with pain and even more frantic about the swelling and bruising and how awful I would look).

As my last sentence implies, I've worked hard and now shoot with the same equipment that the newspapers use and I hope the same kind of ability.  I've stopped being so painfully shy and I can speak easily with the participants in the industry, even the heavyweights.  What's nice is that many of these people actually stop me to say hello to me now, and ask me how I am, or tell me they loved a particular image I took.  However I still have days when I am riddled by self-doubt and because of this I take great heart from reading about Delly's experience in Russia.

So....  Go and read Delly's final Russian Blog properly...  He's so ace..

Long ago, in a galaxy far far away???   Exceed and Excel winning at Randwick.

Exceed and Excel at Darley's Kelvinside Stud.  Aberdeen NSW.
Earthquake (Exceed and Excel - Cataclysm) winning the G1 Blue Diamond Stakes.

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