Ruminations of an everyday creative

January 18, 2021

Some days I love the rain

But today’s not one of them. My time out this morning was primarily to clear my head and get myself into the right space to do some film editing. Sometimes I feel so far out of my depth that I swear I can sense sharks circling between the waves! I did find some shots amongst the fluster of willows being slowly swallowed by the rising waters of the lake. But the shots didn’t float my boat.

And I promise I’ll stop it now with the unintentional watery analogies! I got home dried off, made myself ship-shape and dug in at my Mac with the screencasts and audio files that I was about to transform into something vaguely instructional and perhaps even somewhat engaging.

And to be honest it went ok. It always does. Well nearly always. A few hours of work and out popped three video lessons all shiny and new and ready to be sent on their way.

I use software called Final Cut Pro for film editing and there’s rather a lot to it. Most of which I’m blissfully unaware of and intend to keep it that way. I don’t know about you but I can suffer from decision overload, and I suspect it’s a common problem with anything as unbounded as creative skills.

Some days I go out with just one lens, occasionally with just my phone and have a sneaking suspicion that this actually helps with my creative flow. There’s so much less to think about.

When I pack my camera bag to the crows nest with every lens and photographic appendage that I own it only tends to muddy the waters for me. I may well be equipped to handle everything from a macro to a distant deer shot, from a 5 minute long exposure to a wide angle scenic, but then I feel I need to keep an eye out for everything and never really focus.

Sometimes that’s good and I just see where it takes me. But when I only have my little Pen F and the 17mm lens I know just what I’m looking for as my creative limits are so much more defined. I think it’s the same with processing.

With my film editing I don’t have many decisions to make because I don’t  know what they are! It’s the same with Photoshop too. I know what I know, I made a decision long ago not to worry about luminosity masks, pen selections, and a myriad other things and it keeps me reined in.

When I come to work on an image I know my options and my limits and can work easily within them. This is not to say I’m not constantly learning new techniques, eagerly trying new things. It’s just that something has to really grab me by the whatnots before I commit to spending valuable time and even more precious brain cells learning and mastering it.

So, the videos are made and it’s time for a play in Lightroom with a shot a year or so old of the very same drowning willows on the lakeshore that beat me this morning. I did nothing more than give it a gentle kiss of teal and orange colour grading before being happy with it. Would the application of a luminosity mask make for a better shot? I’ll never know. 

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