It’s a new year, but somehow I’m in an old-fashioned funk.

I’m always telling my clients that the power of photographs is their ability to instantaneously give us memories from a day, or a time or a whole era of our lives. With one look, they transport us to a different place and a different time. Smiles and tears accompany these little trips, and it feels good.

The cobbler’s kids

You’ve heard that the cobbler’s kids go without shoes, right? Well, that could be you and me. We make all these great pictures for other people, but what’s about us? What about my memories? When I see a portrait I did a decade ago, does it remind me of how much that person has grown and how our lives have evolved as it does for a mother?

Well, sometimes I’m still involved with that person, but not usually.

Be a journalist

No, not someone who writes the news. Be a person who keeps a journal, a diary. The power of the diary is that you can look back and see how you got past hard times and remember the great times. It’s almost as good as enjoying photos from the past.

But you can use your past photos — the ones made for others — as a journal, a diary.

Look back at what you made and note that you did a good job. Then, note that you can do better now. Note that you can still make great stuff. And note that you’ve had experiences that enriched your life and that there are more to come.

Share it

As you look back, as you pull yourself out of the funk, take those pictures and share them again. Tag the original subjects. Make a print and pin it on the wall or stick it on the fridge. Send a physical copy in the mail to a real person. Share the power of the picture all over again.

You’ve done good things, you’ve made great things, and you can do it again. You will do it this year. This month. Heck, make it happen this week. Start by picking up your camera right now.

Ahhh. I feel better already. Thanks for tuning in.

By the way …

While you’re sharing, head over to our new Photofocus Community and share your photo with us there — it’s not Facebook, and we don’t do a rights grab on your pictures or your information. Just a place to share with like-minded folks. See you there.

Portrait Tips come out each week, and you can see them all right here.