Friday, December 30, 2016

Christmas Pictures

Christmas is over and I'm feeling a little bummed. It's not because I didn't get what I wanted or that there was too much stress or anything like that. In fact, we had a very nice, peaceful, stress free Christmas. The food was delicious and the presents appreciated. The activities I did this season were also fun. The time spent with family was wonderful. Did I say Christmas was peaceful? Well, not quite all the time, but the noise was much loved!!

(You may notice I'm one boy short in this picture. He had to leave early. Since he's a teenager, I'm sure he really didn't mind missing out on the picture!)

So, what's the deal with me being bummed? Photography! I'm bummed about my photography this season. For the last two years, I have not wanted to take pictures of my tree, decorations, presents, candy canes, or anything else related to Christmas. I took a grand total of fourteen pictures this December of Christmasy things and I forced myself to take those. That's just sad!

I had good excuses . . . it's been dark and dreary . . . I really don't have time . . . I'd rather read a Christmas book or work a puzzle. . . I need to get outside for awhile. When I'm truthful with myself I know these are just excuses. There's a deeper problem . . . it's comparison. I've been intimidated by the beautiful, simply gorgeous, amazing pictures of Christmas on social media. I would look at my things and know that I couldn't take any pictures near as wonderful. So, I just didn't take any.  I simply didn't have the heart to compete with what I was seeing.

I thought I would take pictures this week after the hustle and bustle was over, but I'm just not feeling it. So, maybe I won't. Maybe I'll let another year pass without taking pictures of pretty light bokeh, sweet candy canes, colorful stockings, and delightful Santas. Maybe I'll just sit by my tree for another few days and take pictures with my eyes. I'll look at each ornament or decoration and remember the stories behind them. Maybe that's all I need this year. Next year, maybe I'll take a break from social media throughout December. No, that won't work. If I did that I wouldn't see all the beautiful things you post and I really love seeing them. What I need to do is to have a good, long talk with myself. I need to remind myself that comparison is not healthy. I need to remind myself of what is important to me and what I want to take pictures of is my choice. There are all types of photographers out there. I'm a nature photographer. Setting up those lovely Christmas vignettes stresses me out, so why spend time doing that. 

Thanks for being here and for listening to me as I've shared my feelings. It has helped me. I'm no longer feeling bummed. In fact, I'm headed outside where I'd rather be anyway!

I want to wish you all a very happy New year.
I'm looking forward to what 2017 may bring.


  1. Cathy, I'm giving your shoulders a gentle shake. These photos are wonderful! Secret: I think most of us feel this way about our holiday pictures. I know I do, especially Christmas morning : low light, shutter too slow to catch the constant movement, etc. (Note to self: use a faster lens next year.) However, I will tell you what made this year fun for me: my Christmas mug series. I'm already thinking ahead to what my 2017 series will be. Maybe a focused series would help you, too.

  2. As Dotti mentioned, you are not alone in your feelings of 'not enough' i share some of the same ones... But thank goodness you know yourself well enough to know that nature photography is what you love and at this point in our lives isn't that what matters. I think I am still searching for my niche and hopefully I will find it this year.....Your photographs are always beautiful and from your heart and just knowing that makes me smile when I visit you....

  3. Oh, I have always so admired your photos, Cathy! I hope you'll keep snapping away for people like me who aren't photographers and think everything you share is perfect :) Honestly--I love your work!!

    And that shot of your grandsons in their pjs--how precious is that! Wishing you a most happy and healthy 2017!

  4. Wonderful images of Christmas seen through your eyes, Cathy! I especially love that little dove and the symbolic meaning behind its presence. Love those stripey PJ's your grandsons are wearing! Such lovely and meaningful ornaments on your tree. All I can say about photography is: 'be yourself'! That is what we all really do the best and then our own special and unique way of seeing things shines through! I can always see a big part of you in your photos, Cathy, so you are definitely doing something which expresses you quite perfectly! Happy New Year!

  5. Cathy, I feel the same way about my Christmas photos, and about still life in general, truthfully. So many others do it so much better than I do. But like you, that's not where my heart is, anyway. I'd rather be outside, shooting in nature, and I prefer found photos to set-up ones. I think it's fine to admire and be inspired by others' work, but yours is wonderful in its own right - your style, your subjects. I always love seeing your photos and reading your thoughts. You, yourself, are very special just as you are!

  6. I'm with you, Cathy... I'd much rather be outside with my camera. But just to say, that photograph of the shiny curled ribbon is simply magic!

  7. Aw. Cute and looks like so much fun.
    Happy 2017!

  8. Oh Cathy, your photos are lovely. And you are correct, don't compare. Appreciate your photos for what they remind you of, what you were feeling, or what you saw. But don't not take photos because you feel some others are 'better'. Better is subjective. For example, I adore the photo of the grandkids -- imagine the boys looking back on those in an album years from now! All the memories it will evoke for you and them. All the very best to you in 2017.

  9. I never thought of it as comparison being an issue. I just don't take many because I would rather be present in the season than taking pictures of it. Plus I know I will not do anything with the photos, they will live on my hard drive forever. Now let me go to the beach and take pictures of snow and ice and the lake, those I will do something with.

  10. these pictures are beautiful and very artsy, i wish my pictures were as beautiful as yours!!

    and boys will be boys AND i love the pjs. happy new year - i hope the new year brings you more appreciation of your special photography. you are really awesome and i always enjoy my visits here!!!

  11. The photos were beautiful. I didn't even think about taking pictures of my tree this year. Maybe I will next year.


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