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Ladies and Gents Who Lunch photos
Oakland Lake Merritt area

March 21st, 2004

Well, Yes
This day has been a good day. I say this with some relief as the last few days have been down, tired and depressing to the point I've wondered if the job, the chemical balance and the bad habits were conspiring to drive me down. Diddle-dee-down. Maybe I'm a little more polar than I think. Diddle-dee-dink.

The difference is startling. Lots of sleep Friday night, for example, but tired all day, the feet hurting (still walked downtown and looked around, though), the mind like mud, a nap or two, and finally another good night's sleep last night. This morning the head clear, the spirits up, a spring in my step, the feet feeling just fine in their new tennis shoes, thank you, and an urge to put a long lens on the camera and try it out. This has lasted the day long, the picture at the top one of the thirty or so taken in the space of maybe an hour: no mess, no stress. The camera itself needs to be returned to B&H for replacement, unfortunately, as the vertical shutter release doesn't seem to work. One reason to go with B&H, though, no questions asked, RMA in hand, the camera goes back Fed Ex tomorrow. A hassle, but many things are.

I'm beginning to see the difference between film and digital shooting. I scan my film and manage it in PhotoShop, so I'm not totally unaware of what's required. You shoot a hundred pictures though, at 6 megs apiece, you need to download them to the computer, look at them, futzed with one or two to see what you've got (so as not to miss a good shot) and then file them to a CD with enough information written on the CD or contained on the CD to know what you've got. This is a little different that filing film strips with a contact sheet in a binder. I bought a CD binder Saturday, it holds 120 CD's, I will probably buy more before I'm finished.

One aspect of this tired stressed out depressed feeling I've described was boy did I not want to write and what I wrote was absolute shit. This is not to say the writing I do otherwise is wonderful, you understand, the problem with writing is most of it's shit, it's part of the contract. A nice line of repartee in Lost in Translation when she says she took up photography and she took up writing (as everyone at her age does) and the photographs were pedestrian and the writing was shit. "Keep writing" (or something to that effect) was his comment.

That's (unfortunately) it. It doesn't matter what the photographs look like, it doesn't matter the writing is shit, the only important thing is you keep it up. You'll get better or you won't. It matters, whether you get better or not, but that's not the reason you write or shoot because as a reason it isn't reason enough. Complain, it's OK to complain, but don't explain; don't look for an appreciative crowd; never be embarrassed posting something dumb; keep grinding it out. You learn. It will get you out of bed in the morning as often as not and in this world that's called success.

Are we giving ourself a little pep talk after these days in the dumps? You've said this before, you know, with great force and confidence. You think any of it's true? Doodle-dee-do?

Well, yes.

The photograph was taken on Lake Merritt in Oakland with a Nikon D2H mounted with a 70 - 200mm f2.8 Nikkor (Nikon) lens.