That Big Anchor
“You’re young! Get the fuck out of here!”
That’s what my Aunt says to me, in a fantastic New York accent, when I talk about my desire to travel more. I talk about it a lot because I started traveling recently and have fallen in love. See, I was that idiot in high school and college that didn’t take up their parents’ offer to pay for adventures to far off locales. Oh how I’m cursing myself now. I could have gone to Ireland, France, Italy, Spain, even New Zealand or Hong Kong and I said, “No thanks.” You can get in line to call me a dummy after I finish doing it myself.
Take a look at my Instagram or Pinterest (yes, I have one and apparently it thinks I'm either gay or a woman because of my "Wedding Photo Inspiration" and "Men's Style" boards. Damnit), you’ll see they’re filled with pictures of far off places that I’m just dying to check off the bucket list. Traveling is always surprising, whether it be the scenery or the people and that’s what makes it so attractive. Discovering new things for myself and seeing everything outside my personal bubble is simply awe-inspiring. As a photographer, it’s an opportunity to bring sights and stories to those who can’t see for themselves. I’m incredibly lucky and fortunate to be financially able to travel and have expensive hobbies; I feel like it’s my responsibility as an artist to share what I’m lucky enough to see through my lens.
I’m typing this as I’m about to board a plane to Seattle, where I’ll visit Olympic National Park for a day before jumping on a train to explore Vancouver for a few afternoons, followed by taking the train back to Seattle and then eventually a plane back home. I’m still processing how freaking lucky I am to do this. I really started reflecting on this a few days ago during a rehearsal for my local theater group. It was our first rehearsal as a cast and our director laid out an ice-breaker for us to introduce ourselves. One of the questions was:
"If you could do anything without inhibition or expectation, what would it be?"
The first things that came to my mind were: talk to that cute coffee shop girl, sleep all day, be a wizard (Oh hush you!), or be a full time professional photographer. But then I thought about my last trip to Jasper National Park, and my other trip to Yellowstone and it hit me; I want to be a traveling photographer. I want to take pictures of the world; whether that be for sports, weddings, travel, you name it. I want to experience and see everything I can.
And it’s a scary thought, being at the whim of a given moment and just going places. No plan, no forethought; just a leaf in the wind. But maybe it doesn’t have to be scary, maybe it can be liberating. I’ve thought about it a lot and because I love my current job so much, I think I’ll save this venture for when I get tired. Tired of a standard job, tired of my living situation, tired of responsibility, tired of having an anchor. In the mean time, my vacations and weekends will serve me well to go out and enjoy the world, even if its only limited to my backyard. I think that could be a lot of fun.
A camera has always been my tool for going out into the world with confidence. It’s time I took advantage of that.