A bit over two years ago—in January 2019—I started my little experiment on photography and self-improvement. It went pretty well, but then ended in July. I moved on to the Seawall, Yaletown parks, the ducks of False Creek, and then… working from home.
Here’s what I got out of my Burrard Bridge Experiment: first, that structure and discipline were possible with the right motivation and accountability. But second, that the way I did it was not sustainable. I was getting bored and antsy with the repetitive views, and though I was indeed getting up early, and shooting from the bridge at set times, I was lazing around in the YMCA lobby way too much after posting my pics, before finally getting off my ass and to work out. In a way, I might as well have been sleeping in!
The struggle continued afterwards. Walking to and from work along the Seawall* was great cardio and I took tons of amazing photos, but my schedule was a bit erratic. I kept trying while working from home; you’d think it’d be easier with nowhere to go and therefore more time to get there — but a stable morning routine always seemed to elude me. Dark and / or rainy mornings definitely don’t help, either. And if I’m honest, neither does an equally elusive evening routine, so that’s another thing to work on.
(* Well, most days. Unless the weather was really bad, or I was feeling really lazy.)
On the other hand, welcome to the human race! It’s not just me, everybody struggles, especially now. Which, hey, does make me feel better.
But also, I believe I’ve been struggling in the wrong direction. What I’ve been trying to recapture is not just a routine, but a cool photo project. The problem with that is (1) those don’t necessarily go together, (2) I don’t know what kind of thing I want to do, but (2b) I’m so done with the whole Burrard-Bridge-looking-at-Sunset-Beach thing.
And I have to remember that “routine” doesn’t have to mean a strict schedule. As long as I’m moving forward, climbing the mountain, building on previous days, I’m doing okay.
I need to start with something specific. Small-scale. Maybe that’s what Year 5 will be about? I don’t know.
Speaking of Burrard Bridge, though, I still have all of those photos. Wouldn’t it be fun to gather them all in a gallery or slideshow or something? I mean, that was always in the back of my mind so maybe it’s time to actually do it!
Meantime, I’ll keep collecting those sunrises.