Tuesday, October 5, 2010

There's a War?

It was mid August 09, a turning point in my journey of fine art photography. Lisa and I spent a weekend kayaking on the middle Youghiogheny River in Central Pennsylvania near Ohiopyle. We didn't do any major whitewater, I was looking for quite still water for reflection photos. We paddled a ten mile section and enjoyed the day.

I was unable to find the type of rock outcroppings I was looking for so being with good friends and enjoying the water was a reward in itself. We camped two nights in the van and enjoyed the different terrain and star shine that we don't normally see in our home area.

During the weekend I read a book by Steven Pressfield "The War Of Art". Not just for artists. I found it on the book list by Donald Trump. Steven, a seasoned warrior, opened my eyes to a new direction and discovery of doing "my work", of overcoming resistance, and self doubt in an endeavor.
This book was instrumental in the paradigm shift, like my photography, of seeing what is before me in a different view.  I finished the book on the way home, a quick read. I was inspiried to step into a new role and make a transition. Monday morning I still had the kayak on the van, I took my camera and lunch and headed off to work, on the river.

"Eternity is in love with the creations of time" William Blake  From "The War of Art" Steven Pressfield

There is always prayer during war, the book talked of praying to the muses, asking God to guide. Any great artist knows that it's a gift, something that is easy and flows in their life. So I prayed and asked for guidance to my objective of reflections on the water. I wasn't gone long, it didn't take all day to get what I was looking for.

" It's one thing to study war and another to live a warriors life."  Telamon  of Arcadia From "The War of ARt" Steven Pressfield

 I paddled out on the Susquehanna river to a familiar place but to a lower water level and found the reason for the trip. I can see rocks and water, but I see more than landscapes to photograph in nature. I did my work, I accomplished my given task for that particular moment. I found the shot from a distance and can mark the day as a turning point.

Since that time this photo has been an inspiration to me as well as an amusement to many people who have stopped by my art show booth. As I hang my photos on the wall in coffee shops and galleries I've had folks ask "They hung the photo all wrong" Then I hear the "Wow, do you see that face?"

 I like the images both portrait and landscape.

     There is a resistance, a struggle, the war still rages but I can recognize the enemy a bit better and understand the forces that try to deter me from my work. Some folks have mastered the war and others are still wondering where the war is.
What's your war? Who is the enemy? Where is the battle? It's not the family, or boss, job or finances. It usually lies with in.

"Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, magic,and power in it. Begin it now".W.H. Murray, The Scottish Himalayan Expedition From "The War of Art" Steven Pressfield

 "The War of Art:" Steven Pressfield.

For more "Faces of the Susquehanna" check out www.vertizontalarts.com



  1. Steve, I feel your heart, your pulse in this post. I am delighted to have been invited to take part in your journey. Can't wait to see where the river will take you.

  2. The journey of Stephen Pidcock, a God story unfolding before our eyes! Wow, I felt like I was there with you while looking at the photos and reading your story. Rob