Thursday, January 5, 2012

“Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage.”

 Ralph Waldo Emerson

Individuality really does take courage and strong will. You have to believe in yourself and work extremely hard to prove people wrong. I have always been a strange person with a very particular "voice". But I have finally gotten to that point where I am happy with the direction my work is going in. But it hasn't always been easy and it still isn't always easy. From the beginning, people have either loved or hated my style of photography. I love to edit, that is obvious, and I have always strive for my photos to look like the paintings that I have always loved since I was a child. I am very emotional about my own work and about the work of others. Sometimes a beautiful painting or photograph can bring me to tears. I am overwhelmed by beauty and have never been good at taking a raw photo. I do not like harsh high fashion photography, white backgrounds, or ironic themes. I want my photos to leave a positive impact on the viewer, the same way my favorite art leaves an impact on me. I don't know if I have reached that point yet, but I can say that I have been successful in creating a style that is unique and my own, that leaves in impression, for better or for worse. Sometimes people will try and overlook you, they will opt for the safe choice most of the time. But I believe if you work hard and demand to be noticed you will be noticed. I am not  where I would like to be in my career yet and someday I really hope to be shooting for well known designers, the artists I cherish, but I do want to say for myself and for anyone reading, that you should always create for yourself. No matter what anyone says. No matter if it sets you back a few years and you have to work harder than if you just conform. But there is no victory in conforming because art is one of the only things we leave behind in this world, and I don't know about you, but I want to be remembered for making something different. 
Tom Waits says it best:

 "In the forest, there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. Every day, the straight tree would say to the crooked tree, "Look at me...I'm tall, and I'm straight, and I'm handsome. Look at're all crooked and bent over. No one wants to look at you." And they grew up in that forest together. And then one day the loggers came, and they saw the crooked tree and the straight tree, and they said, "Just cut the straight trees and leave the rest." So the loggers turned all the straight trees into lumber and toothpicks and paper. And the crooked tree is still there, growing stronger and stranger every day.”

― Tom Waits

Thank you to all of you who have stuck by me and have been supportive of my photography. Much love to you all!!


  1. Thank you for these words.
    I know how you feel. Sometimes it's really hard to not give up, but to follow your heart. But I think that's the only way we can become happy and feel complete.

  2. Caitlin, I love what you say about embracing who you are as a photographer. I love that you are not trying to fit anyone's definition of what you should be, and I love that you promote that you should always create for yourself. Beautiful.

  3. I really love this post. Going against the beaten path can be so hard sometimes.

  4. Thanks so much for this post (found your link on Alex Beadon site) it is really well timed for me, as I am suffering from this problem of loosing my photo identity because trying to produce work that I think people will want, rather than what I enjoy. As such I have faltered and lost faith, and packed my camera away for the time being while I try and remember why I loved photography in the first place all those years ago when I first picked up a camera - for me.