If you work in terms of photographic projects there is always something that happens, every time. You finish. Projects, by definition, have an end. If you are diligent, then your goal is to reach that point and say, “Here is the result of my work.” Accolades, critical recognition and people buying your art for a whole pile of money are extras. Nice to have, for sure, but not the primary reason you make your art. I’ve hit the end of the road on the Icon Transformed Project. This week, the photos will be hung, the Keepsake is ready and this coming Friday is the opening. The work is done. Now what?
The easy thing to do is “rest on your laurels” and revel in your success. I remember a great quote describing a man that, “had a Roman’s appetite for victory, but lacked the Spartan’s will to suffer for it.” I shall celebrate for one day and then go back to the process of creating art. Transition is not an easy thing. My artistic momentum has to be shifted almost 180 degrees, from the finishing of the project to the beginning of a project. My enthusiasm has to be rekindled and redirected from finishing a project starting something new.
It does seem odd to me that my enthusiasm wanes at the end of a project. As an example, the Keepsake (photos next week) is a truly wonderful combination of media that came together in an amazing package. I am not excited by that because I knew it would be that way before it was printed and assembled. My enthusiasm for that part of the project was at a high level near the moment of creation at the beginning of the project. Once I knew the Keepsake was going to be good thing, the goal became to insure the content matched the concept of the project. A great concept with no content is a failure on all fronts.
An Icon Transformed was a great project. Will the next one measure up? I won’t know until the next one is completed. And I can’t complete the next project until it is started.
Not going to the Royal Wedding on Friday April 29? Join us at the opening of the Icon Transformed show Friday evening from 6:30 to 8:00 PM. The photographs are being shown in three galleries at the Cary Town Hall Campus, in Cary, North Carolina. Start at the Page Walker Arts and History Center on Ambassador Loop and get directions you to the other galleries. Y’all come now, heah?