I like this quote from Pete Townsend:  ‘I’d like to have been more like Frank Auerbach or Lucien Freud, doing something artistic every single day without fail, building a legacy of work that evolves steadily.’  I think it’s the idea of looking for opportunities, however small, to do something artistic on a regular basis, even if ‘every single day’ may pose practical problems.  I find that sometimes events just present themselves, I’m walking down a street and see something unusual, a happening, a brief tantalising glimpse revealing a hidden reality.  To capture those moments photographically, there and then, may not be possible, but having an ideas’ note book to hand I find really helpful, just to jot down what I’ve seen.  I’ve heard that photographers like Henri Cartier-Bresson would always have a camera on them to capture as many of those moments that they could.  Certainly I’d have liked to have had a camera recently when a short sharp rainfall was followed by that wonderful afternoon autumnal light and the city was gleaming luminously off every surface.  Yes, I could use my mobile phone, but often these moments pass too quickly.  An immediate point and shoot approach is very well suited to film cameras, like for instance the Olympus OM1 or OM2, light cameras which can be carried so easily and produce superb results (http://www.olympus-global.com/en/corc/history/camera/om/#02).  I’m trying to remember to have mine with me more when I’m out and about.  A friend of mine remarked that if he didn’t do something artistic every day he felt he would explode!  However, I find I often need a bit of external encouragement to keep at it, perhaps a deadline, maybe submitting to an exhibition.  A college course is good at providing this too, as are photography competitions.  Another way is to have peer review of one’s work.  Tonight I’m going along to my local London Independent Photography group.  It’s a really supportive environment where people show their work and give each other feedback and suggestions (http://www.londonphotography.org.uk/), and they also have regular exhibitions and produce a great magazine.

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