“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”-Jennifer LeeIMG_4830

What sets your soul on fire? Well, I bet you can guess what sets my soul on fire…#Lightstalking! Yes, photography! But, to be honest, after twenty-five years of photographing, there was a period of time that I didn’t photograph.

About nine years ago, I put down my camera, (I thought for good) and didn’t pick it up for five years. I stepped away from my photography and the only career I had ever known. Talk about scary. My photography routine had become mundane. I needed to step away, take brake, and think about if I wanted to continue photographing. I needed to reevaluate what I wanted out of photography, if anything.

During those five years, I felt lost. It wasn’t until I decided to pick up my smartphone and played with the phone’s camera that I discovered how truly passionate I was about photography. Now I realize that many photographers, professional, semi-pro and amateur, regard smartphone photography as a subpar medium. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. With that said, my smartphone’s camera opened a new chapter in my photographic career. Creating amazing photographs from this “simplified” camera was a challenge that reignited my passion for photography! What I learned from this experience was with time, patience and practice, you can master anything your set your mind to. I became more aware of my subjects, composition and the more importantly, the lighting. It wasn’t long after that I picked up a “real” camera and picked up where I had left off five years prior.

As I reflect about my past, I feel as though I am a better photographer. I left photography to find myself. I found that what set my soul on fire was the very thing I stepped away from.

“Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves.” Henry David Thoreau

-S 4/8/17