A friend recently blogged on ‘disconnecting’ for the weekend and the freedom it gave her to become directly involved in her life, rather than observe through her camera lens and behind a blog.
Her post got me thinking about my own tendencies towards observation and interaction. From day one I have always leaned towards the role of observer. I tend to stand back, take it all in, process what I’m seeing, and record for later use or action. Rarely do I come to a point where direct interaction is appropriate or required. But, sometime in my 20’s I realized that being the observer was a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy of sorts, in that if I always put myself in the role of the observer, action will never be required. In a journalistic sense, the observer/recorder should never be part of the action/interaction, lest they become part of the story (a taboo in the journalism world).
Once I realized this, I put down the camera and tried to become more involved, living life rather than observing it. I found that I enjoyed myself much more, but over the years have realized that I missed capturing some of those moments and images. Striking to the heart of this post: as with everything in life, balance is the key.
Now is the time to find that balance. Time for me to be involved, and observant; to walk that tightrope between fully engaged but oblivious, and fully observant but detached and unaffected.
Of course, this isn’t JUST about photography either, the same balance needs to be reflected within my own social networking. Do I pause to tweet, Facebook, or blog so as not to lose the impact of the moment shared, or do I wait until later to share out and run the risk of not sharing at all when the moment begins to fade in importance and impact? There’s no singularly right answer here, as balance is the key again. Sometimes I’ll need to share out RIGHT NOW, other times I’ll need to wait, or to not share at all as I live in the moment for me and my own direct experiences. Each instance is its own choice to make to strike the right balance for me. Something to think on…