Photography Musings During Pandemic

(The featured image was the last shoot I’ve done before the lockdown. The lockdown actually happened the day after!)

Because photography was not considered an “essential” business, sadly many photographers had to shut down their businesses for two months. With social distancing rules still in place, wedding and event photographers still cannot work because of events being postponed or cancelled.

Since many photographers now had plenty time on their hands, it was a great time to take advantage to improve their craft or business, whether it was trying out new styles, learning different techniques, or learning about business. I, on the other hand, have used this time to take a break from photography. With the exception of trying out different editing styles, going through RAW files of weddings and events I’ve shot in the past as either an associate or second shooter, and FINALLY editing cell phone video footage from my South Dakota road trip, I haven’t done a shoot or even went outside to take pictures!

At the time of writing this blog, I don’t miss photography very much, especially the type of photography I’ve been doing prior to quarantine. There were times I wanted to visit The Strip and take advantage of its emptiness, but I haven’t gotten around to doing it. It was probably because all the parking garages were closed and I didn’t want to walk the entire Strip to shoot anything. I’ve also thought about learning how to do time-lapse photography on my “new” Nikon Z50, but I barely found my tripod about 2 weeks ago. Even when I found my tripod, the motivation still wasn’t there.

When Nevada’s “Phase 1” started on May 9, it allowed photography businesses to re-open. I had moments of wanting to find models and do shoots again, but sometimes the motivation came and went. Throughout this time, I was being so indecisive of what I really wanted to do that it became overwhelming.

Why is this back and forth happening? It’s because I lack empathy for photography. The goal, need, and want to become a working, professional photographer is barely there. Other than needing to fulfill contracts of two postponed weddings and one other obligation as an associate photographer, I’m not going to push it as much. It’s weakened the drive so much that I now blame the pandemic for “ruining my photography business.”

Before I left the casino industry in 2016, being a full-time photographer was my ultimate goal. Working in the casino industry for 10 years felt like being in a tumultuous relationship. After working as a paid, professional photographer for almost 8 years, I can say the same thing about photography!

One thing I know for sure – being a photographer would have affected my life in the worst way during this pandemic. It has not done any good for my life so far in 2020!

I haven’t fully given up on photography as a hobby though. I invested so much time, money, and energy on photography that I can’t give it up completely yet. The pandemic has put my mind in a funk, and hopefully as it eases, my mind will slowly get out of that funk!