Thoughts on Posting to the Internet

I have a new rule. If I feel I need to write, I write. It’s one of the reasons I bought my iPad–quick, easy access to writing.

Right now I want to write.

I spent part of my evening shifting my flickr account over to a username I’ve decided to attempt to use everywhere on the web. It gets confusing trying to remember everything, everywhere. I can’t use my surname, because that may change. So Jaz Design, it is, everywhere. I don’t see that ever changing (but never say never I suppose!)

Upon shifting my flickr account, I was surprised at how little I’d used the old one. Admittedly, until I purchased my Canon last November, my Pentax had been on the fritz and therefore I’d pretty much forgotten I had it.

I am feeling completely and utterly photography starved.

I then had a realisation, I found posting to the new account rather scary. It was the same anxiety I have about writing, about Twitter. Hell, why I haven’t posted on Medium. That somehow what I’m doing doesn’t measure up to everything that’s out there. That it matters what people think of it.

It does and it doesn’t. Some people will like it. Some won’t. Feedback is important, but it’s not as important as doing something for yourself.

I used to take photographs to explore. I enjoy fine art and sketch and paint when I have the time, but photography provided a more “immediate” outlet for me, that gave me the same kind of excitement. It wasn’t just about documenting, it was about experimenting and making the camera my third eye.

All through my New York trip I had trouble connecting with the camera, and it wasn’t just because it was new. I think it was because I’d lost my reason.

I love to write, I love to paint, I love to design. I love all those things because they make me happy, they help me make sense of the world and I like to share them because there’s a chance they’ll make someone else happy too.

I am a capable human being, with ideas worth hearing and some artistic talent. That sounds completely immodest, but to be honest, right now, I don’t care. It’s true. I can’t do everything, not all my ideas are worth hearing, and some of the stuff I produce is crap. That is true of absolutely everyone.

I read a post today about how we become echoes of the things we’re reading. We lose our voice. Our own voice.

When I finished my master’s degree in September 2011, I went into a sort of hibernation and spent 2012 trying to regroup and move on from it. I don’t think I did. I think the burnout I suffered from overworking myself (I’d still do it again, no regrets!) lead me to absorb myself in all the wonderful, inspiring writing and artwork of the internet and so I lost my voice. It somehow stole my confidence and I stopped playing and experimenting as much because I was afraid that I didn’t measure up. That people wouldn’t care what I Tweeted, that my writing style was too disjointed (hey, it is what it is) and that my photographs weren’t worth a browse.

Coney Island: After the Storm

Even now, after posting my Coney Island photo, my brain is running through all the things that people are going to say. “It’s too post processed”, “Photoshopping isn’t real photography”, “What’s up with the aspect ratio”.

Yeah. It is post processed. Yeah. I made it black and white, on no how cliched. I like it. It’s my memory and it’s how I saw it when I was there.

Fuck it. It really is time to just start doing stuff for me and let whatever happens, happen. I don’t have to fit the mold. My definition of perfect is good enough and even then I don’t have to fit it.

I’ve read a lot of reflexive pieces on Medium and a lot of them are about writing, or creativity or sharing and I’m glad because it’s made it easier for me to see this. It has made me feel far less alone.

Do what you want to do. If it’s not hurting anybody, then I really don’t see the problem.