We live in an age the level of noise is extremely high. Neverending breaking news cycles are assaulting our need for safety, making us less willing to communicate with others. In turn, we take the shouting to social media networks. It never ends. Taking a hobby might help dial down the loudness. Photography did it for me.
I’ve started to find astrophotography very therapeutic. The sheer number of stars made me realize none of what happens online and on the tv matters. Once you figure that out, it’s easier to focus on things that really matter to you.
It doesn’t matter what your hobby is. Just get out there and make yourself feel good. As long as you get to escape the loudness, it’s time and money well spent. And money shouldn’t scare you since you don’t have to spend that much at all. Look at the picture above – the lens I used cost about $50, even though it’s a 300mm.
And if you need more, you could try renting. The picture above tells a funny story. Last month I planned to shoot the International Space Station passing over a full moon. All seemed to be well until clouds covered the moon 15 minutes before the passing. At least I got the shot of a full moon using a modern 150-600mm lens. All was not lost and I used the same moon in an older picture I shot with the cheap 300mm lens:
I know not everybody has the time to plan trips to photograph the things they like. Even I wish I had more time. However, the past weeks have shown me I can shoot great photos from the office:
The fact I’m using a mirrorless system means I can pack light. Even though I’m not the biggest fan of the 16mm Sony pancake, it does ok when coupled with the VCL-ECU adapter. These weigh next to nothing and can easily be used next to a river, at night, when the stars are shining.
You have to get yourself out of the house. I know the instant gratification of social media is hard to say no to, but making a plan and going through with it has an awesome result: a feeling of accomplishment. And for that reason alone, my 2019 has been the year I became grateful for having photography as a hobby. Moreover, I’m looking forward to 2020 and the few challenges I already thought about.