Psyching Myself Out

Thursday, May 9th, 2013 15

It’s been just slightly over 2 weeks since I embarked on a new photography journey. After wrapping up my first 365 project, I decided to jump right in to another one. But I decided to use the themes that emerged from my first 365 to guide me moving forward on my next endeavor. In seeing that instant photography and self-portraits were the most resonant and constant markers over the past year, I decided I would combine those for a 365 Impossible Self-Portraits project.

I began the project on my birthday, April 23, and suffice it to say…it’s been kicking my ass. I knew that this project would be challenging. I knew that it would be difficult. And I knew I was likely a little crazy for taking it on. I mean, it’s one thing to shoot instant film photos every day for an entire year. And it’s another thing to shoot daily self-portraits for 365 days in a row. But to COMBINE these two tasks?!?! That’s kind of nuts, right?

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Going into the project, I felt pretty prepared and fairly ready to take it on. Looking back through my last 365, I could see that I shot 27 instant self-portraits. 27. That seemed like a considerable number of self-portraits that I shot with my Polaroid cameras, which led me to feel some confidence that I could really do this 365 Impossible Self-Portraits project. But…

I think I’m psyching myself out. I’m all jacked up about it. Because I have so many dreams and goals for this project, I’m giving it a lot of power. I’m really in my head, putting a great deal of pressure on myself for each and every photo. I am feeling like every shot has to be awesome for my dreams for this project to come to fruition. I am devaluing most of what I shoot, telling myself that the photographs aren’t artistic enough or interesting enough.

Thankfully, I’m journaling as I work on the project. And in doing so, I realize that these thoughts, this kind of negative self-talk, is a creativity killer. I’m working hard to remind myself that at the core, this project is for me. I chose to take on 365 Impossible Self-Portraits for my own photographic growth. This project was what felt right in my core as my next step. 365 Impossible Self-Portraits is what I believe will help me move forward in my creative journey. And that needs to be my focus. Yes, I do have dreams and goals for what may come of this project. But for now, day by day, I need to do the work, get out of my head, and stop psyching myself out.

Note to self: Trust the process, Meghan. xoxo

15 Responses

  1. Clare says:

    A great lesson for all types of goal setting. Self defeating inner talk must be avoided! Great post!

  2. You are a force. I have no doubt that you will kick this project’s ass and come out with more brilliant work.

  3. Debra says:

    Yes, my dear, trust the process. Day by day you will have ups and downs but the body of the work will not depend on a single day or a handful of days. What you are building over the year will be spectacular, possibly even in ways that you don’t expect. xoxo

    • Meghan says:

      Thanks so much, Deb. I’m having days that I think I’m totally crazy for doing this and days when I think this is awesome. So it goes…. xoxo

  4. My hat goes off to you lady! WOW! To be sure there will be ups and downs, but man oh man, you are going going grow into something greater than you already are…which is the bomb already! xo

  5. Creative projects of this ilk often end up being a mirror of our inner landscape, don’t they? Keep shooting!

  6. Corinna says:

    I SO know this in-your-head issue, as you well know. There’s only one way out – shoot your way out! I know that the depth of the challenge you have assigned yourself will directly correlate to the growth and richness it will bring you.

  7. I think this is such an awesome adventure that you are embarking on! Could I ask a very stupid question? How do you take a self portrait with a polaroid? Love following…

    • Meghan says:

      Thanks, Robin. As far as taking them, sometimes I just hold out the camera and click the shutter. I also have a timer and a shutter-release cable 🙂

  8. […] good time to share an update. When I last wrote about the project, I was only 2 weeks in and I was psyching myself out. Although I have my days when I am still in my head and jacked up about the project, I’m […]

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