September 2, 2011

the artist in me....

did you know that i used to call myself an artist
well, i would say "i'm an artist" while coughing into my hand in hopes that the person asking me what i did, wouldn't ask anymore questions.

did you know that today it's really hard for me to call myself a photographer
without doing the same coughing gesture, or at least clearing my throat and then looking away.

why is it hard for some of us, some of the time, to be really proud of what we do.
to be able to say, blatantly....."I am a__________" 

personally for me, i think it's about comparison. 
i think we're all guilty of it, at least a little bit. no matter how hard we try.

i love to look at other photography blogs and websites 
 and find the inspiration i get from them, priceless.
but what else envy. 
which then turns into photography critiquing of my own work, while all the thoughts of not ever being as good as they are come spilling over me.

i hate it when that happens.

so last night, as i was guilty of feeling that way, i went through some old photos i hadn't edited, put on my artists apron {well not physically but you know what i mean} and pulled out all my colors and paint brushing techniques on my computer and played for an hour. it felt so good.

so today
i'm not comparing myself to anyone
well, when you think about it...what a waste of time that is.
time that i could be using practicing saying
"i'm a photographer. well actually a natural light photographer"
with hopes that none of my body parts all of a sudden has the urge to develop a nervous tic
hey friends
who i totally adore for coming to my little corner of the world
have the best LONG weekend ever
i mean it


  1. Thank you for today's post. It's rather how I've been feeling about the whole blogging thing, what with all the beautiful ones here in blogland. Luckily for me my family and friends think mine is great no matter what. They just want that way to connect with me. Who am I to say no ;)
    Whatever you chose to call yourself, I very much enjoy your blog and your beautiful photos.

  2. No doubt about it. Artistic photographer. Awesome words and photos as always dear Beth.

  3. Natural Light Photographer you most certainly are!

  4. "OK Beth, now STOP that!"

    That is what i would say if we were standing somewhere together and then I'd reach over and hug you and say "We all think you're just wonderful Can't you see that?" Then we would laugh and figure out what to go eat :D

  5. I think we are always our worst critics. Have a wonderful weekend and your photography is lovely :)

  6. holy cow Beth, if you're not a
    photographer, I don't know one!
    (although I relate to the feelings
    I read a quote recently (darn, don't remember who said it) that art is
    a way, not a thing.
    You have such an artful way with
    words and sight and LIFE!
    You are so thoroughly an artist!
    (and an equally gifted photographer).
    Keep to the's a beauty:)

  7. I think calling ourselves something (career wise) tends to be linked with an income, the bigger the income the easier it is to admit it! :-) Since I don't make money with my hobby...well, let's not go there. ;-)

    love those yellow hearts!

  8. I started writing a response and it's turning into a whole blog post so I'll work on that and just share that I'm so inspired by your ability to share WHAT IS for you in the moment. It so full of raw beauty, and for me that is the essence of art, sharing what is deep inside... full of not knowing, full of practice, full of desire.

    These photos are fantastic, my favorite is the daisy :)

  9. i feel like that all the time. i know i shouldnt, but i do. its an awful feeling, isnt it? maybe we need to practice saying the statement proudly all weekend.

  10. Oy, you can definitely call yourself a photographer in every sense of the word Beth. You will not need validation by us or anyone, even though it is always wonderful to receive a compliment, once you stop comparing yourself to other photographers. That is a never ending battle my dear. It's like keeping up with the Jonses. There will always be some with more and some with less.

  11. I know exactly what you mean . . . I kind of shift nervously like I'm a kid being caught in a huge big lie.

    I've been working on it though and trying to get better at saying "I'm an Artist" and really owning it.

    I've also got a lot better at taking compliments. The best piece of advice I was given was just to say "thank you". Who knew accepting praise could be that simple.

    Love your photography, you rock it, so own it. Go Beth!

  12. It truly is a waste of time. You do what you love to do, and you do it well. What else is there to think about that?

  13. oh, silly. you are clearly a whole lot of both! this is one gorgeous set of photos, I can't decide which I like best.
    I do know what you mean though, I have no problem saying I am a graphic artist because that is how I make my living, but say I'm an artist? Almost never.
    Have a great weekend yourself!

  14. You're an doubts..look at your gorgeous work!

  15. Hey Beth, anyone who can find pale yellow heart shaped leaves to add in with so many other awesome images is indeed an artist. I think it is as much to do with your big heart as it is your talent ... without the loving energy and care it's just pictures.
    Go out there and own all that you are, you add so much to my world.

  16. Oh...can I ever relate to this post. So hard to claim our ourselves..declare it loud and proud. You ARE a photographer..and a terrific one - at that!!

  17. I love these pictures, and I love you saying aloud what so many people feel.

  18. talent abounds! beautiful.

  19. Oh do I ever relate to this post! I LOVE your photography! You're DEFINITELY a FANTABULOUS photographer!

  20. No doubt that you're part of my inspiration.
    Every day I see your beautiful photos, but I stopped to let the language comments!
    I enjoy your beautiful pictures.
    Happy Weekend!

  21. I understand what you're trying to say and it's sort of how I feel about jealousy, although jealousy and envy are two very close emotions. Jealousy just makes you feel bad about yourself. Every single time - no fail. And yes, what a wasteful (and hurtful) way to spend your time.

    I thought I was the queen of downplaying my talents.

    Hey, that serrated heart-shaped vine photo is fantastic. Love it much!!

    And you.

  22. Love the unique "you" look you have given these.

  23. i have learned that a lot from reading other bloggers, don't compare yourself to others.

    i really do adore your work. i have been practicing more and more w/ photoshop though i am what you'd say a "natural light" amateur photographer, too. i think as an artist, no matter what you do... you are never really satisfied w/ your work. like you can do better. we may be a little too hard on ourselves.

    but i and many others, do adore your work... your writing. it's beautiful and unique.

  24. Awesome. Be grateful for the talent you have. I wish I had it!! :)

  25. A photographer is without a doubt an artist, and you, for sure are both.
    Your art inspires....hey, that's pretty darn cool.

  26. Oh my gosh, I could have written this post as I am constantly comparing my work to everyone else when I should just focus on being me! Sometimes I get inspired looking at other work, yet many times the jealousy/comparison thing rears its ugly head.

    You have a wonderful talent and style all your own. I enjoy coming here and reading what you have to say and looking at your beautiful photos. I am really, really loving the single white daisy and the heart-shaped spiky leaves.

    Hope you enjoy the long weekend. At least I hope it's long for you. :)

  27. Beautiful work, I love them.
    Thanks for the heads up about my email hacking. I've once again changed my passwords. I think I may have to just close my msn acct.

  28. Just need to say that you are an awesome artist, I love you photographs. I came to serious photography well into my 5th decade and now in my 6th I'm just really happy that I can produce great photographs...sometimes :o)
    Love the daisy, so pretty and simple

  29. In my eyes, you are an artist, a photographer and best of all, a beautifully talented life documentor. That is a treasure to this world, and what you bring is uniquely you and wonderful. (Even with the tic !) ;-)

    That photo with the spike heart shaped leaves ? I WANT !!!Let's talk about that, okay ?!!

    I hope your weekend is full of laughter and photo ops. If you are carrying the camera, you can't carry boxes, right ?
    Love ya !

  30. I think the title of your blog says it all. When I am in a good enough place to shut ego off, envy turns into being inspired.

    You inspire me, as do many bloggers, and I have become better at the things I love to do because of that inspiration.


  31. Yes, you are a photographer, for sure! And I love learning from you.

    Yesterday an editor of a tea and coffee magazine asked me to send her a press release for my tea book and I gulped, me, I just did that book for me and you think others would want to see that little book. I could call myself a patternmaker because someone else paid me to do it, but an artist, book maker, or photographer those are scary.

  32. Beth,You are simply "WONDERFUL"

    Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend.

  33. I SO identity with all those feelings... I KNOW I'm not a photographer who would ever be as good as you - or the several other blogs I follow - and that's OK... I wasn't created to be you; I was created to be ME - and add MY way of looking at things to this crazy mix.
    It's all good!

  34. I read this little sentence one day on a blog and I just feel in love with the blog, the artist behind the blog and all that it stand for...

    be yourself...everyone else is taken...

    you can only be who you are and that, my dear is an artist...paintbrush to canvas, pen to paper, eye to are that and then some...

    soak it up....roll around in it...LOVE it.

  35. You are indeed an artist... it takes an artist's eye to take the photos you take.. and then apply texture. Have you worked in other mediums before?....

    Ask me how much I love those heart shaped yellow leaves!!!!

  36. Stumbled upon your blog, and so glad I did. It's really silly how much energy we put into comparing ourselves to others - for what?! I think most of us are guilty. Your photography is captivating.

  37. oh, gosh! you are truly one of my favorite artists... not because you are "good" at what you do {which you are... actually, great!}, but because you are passionate about what you do, creative with what you do, ever evolving with all you do, always improving in what you do, and you beautifully write about what you do. every photos here... just amazing, in my eyes! {p.s. when i have photography envy, you are one i envy, 'cause you're THAT good... but i should really use the word admire, instead of envy. yes, i admire you... it's why you are on my list today... well, it's actually yesterday's list, but i did not get it done before bed in time, so i had to finish it this morning.}

  38. Natural light photographer, I love it :-)...A very good one at that, the passion you take your photographs with shows in all of them. Truly an inspiration in each and everyone of your posts. Thank you, Beth

  39. I feel like that all the time but gosh, you shouldn't!!! Not only are you a fabulous artist and photographer; you are also a very gifted writer! So the next time someone asks you what you do, look them right in the eye and tell the truth.

    After all, the truth will set you free, right?

  40. Oh, You. You ARE an artist, in so many tenses of the word (and verb). I have "known" you for a little more than a year (has it been two?) and I have seen you grow and blossom and bloom. You made my blog header with plenty of back-and-forthing for no charge, and also with plenty of understanding and sympatico. It is a joy to follow how you grow and I will say that it is only in the last year or so that I have said proudly that I, too am an artist. Without the qualifying or coughing. Or at least less of that. It's a process, as is your life, and it is all wonderful.

  41. Here's to sticking your nose to your own path and tossing comparisons to the wind!

  42. Beth,

    I love that in the short time I've been coming to your blog you have not only grown as a photographer but as a person as well. Lovely work you shared today.


  43. Beth, a wonderful post! I'm just trying to catch up from being gone! Hope your weekend was great!

  44. I always love your thoughts. Here's to a little fluffing...YOU are a wonderful, talented, beautiful person who is a photographer, artist and so much more!

  45. I wondering if you sell prints of that one photo of the leaves that look like hearts? I would love to frame that. Let me know.

  46. Like many of the previous commenters, this post certainly resonated with me. I know I feel inadequate when I start to compare myself with the talented photographers and writers that I follow online...It is interesting to see that so many that I admire feel the same way about themselves! I think I will just continue to try and take photos because I am having fun and to follow all my favorite places because I still need inspiration.

    You ARE an artist and a photographer for sure!

  47. Funny isn't it? I still can't wear the title of "artist"... and yet I made my living creating art for years. But, Beth... gotta tell ya, you are not only an artist, but an amazing one.

  48. Great post Beth..such a breath of honesty in your words. I take inspiration from those and from you...and remind myself that we are what we are in every way...and it is enough ♥

  49. Scrolling backward to catch up a bit. Your photos always, ALWAYS tell a story - whether it's your focus or perspective, I'm not sure, but I am sure you're an artist.

  50. Oohhhh I love the artist in you.
    I love the photographer in you.
    I love the writer in you, and the lover of life that you are.
    And I love love love the comedian in you. And that wit...oh, I love the wit in you.

    And how I have missed you!!!

  51. I really hope you don't compare yourself to anyone because from where I sit you are in a class by yourself. Your work always dazzles me with its honesty, it's beauty, its mystical feel or its down to earth perfection. You ARE a photographer. Start believing. (And someday I'll start believing I'm a something... I will if you will!)

  52. well, artist/photographer, i know what i like, and i would absolutely frame every one of these photos and hang them in my house with pride...

  53. I do the same thing, whether it's "writer" (cough" or "photographer" (double cough) and it helps me so much to know you go through the same thing! Very true - it's such a waste of time to compare ourselves to others - in my first writing class (surrounded by truly talented writers) I reminded myself I was there to learn and get better because I enjoyed it. Period. I have to keep reminding myself of that.

  54. Beth I love all of these. Nice playing. Love the girl with all the curls also.
    You are a artist along with so many others.


**I love reading the comments you leave, as they make me feel like we're sitting in my kitchen, having a cup of tea, discussing life and wondering where all the time has gone ...beth