Hope is a funny thing. Sometimes it tricks you into being better than you are. On the other side of the coin, the lack of hope can cripple you even though you’re not injured.
Hope is a principal ingredient in many of the great photographs of our time. And while it’s possible to have great pictures without it, I find it difficult to make great pictures where there is hopelessness.
Now I am not talking about bad mood or depression or listlessness or fear. Some of these can be mistaken for hopelessness.
Hope is the thing.
As I’ve grown older I’ve faced the typical medical challenges that face most people heading into the sunset of their careers. At times, facing those challenges and the trivialities of getting old like needing reading glasses and not being able to sleep as well as I used to, those issues have robbed me of some of my hope. When I am in that place, I notice I don’t shoot as often or as well.
So the question is, what am I going to do about it? Remember, I said hope is a funny thing. Sometimes you find it in the strangest places.
I recently met a young girl who was dying of cancer. She was eight years old. She seemed to enjoy more of her life than many of the successful, beautiful, rich people who surround me. She not only had hope, she simply didn’t see any possibility of anything but. Boy, talk about perspective.
How do you find hope?
It’s different for everyone, but these are some tricks I have found helpful.
1. Make a list of your desires
2. Share your hopes with people you care about
3. Ask others where they find hope
While it may seem trivial, I believe that a positive mental attitude can impact your photos as much as having the proper lens.
So don’t give up. Believe. Have faith in yourself. Look forward to success instead of contemplating possible failure. Try to shoot with hope and see if your pictures don’t improve.