As is so often the case with the haphazard, unplanned and chaotically reactive way that I seem to end up working I frequently manage to stumble upon, or simply create, new problems or difficulties with my workflow. My latest problem is not a bad one by any stretch but its origins lie in the mind of someone with an apparent inability to focus on what he should be doing i.e processing existing images, finalising hundreds of TIFF files already selected by agencies, updating my own website as my Latest News thing is still on Oct 2009! or taking any of a multitude of incompleted tasks through to completion.
Part of this problem is that a few weeks ago I finally decided to overhaul my ageing equipment and treated myself to a new 600mm VR and a D3S camera. At the same time, having tried unsuccessfully to add a decent ‘weed dance’ image to my great crested grebe files, I found myself becoming increasingly distracted by and then immersed in/borderline obsessed with the local coots. ‘Wow, I hear you exclaim collectively, that must be exciting!!’ And they were only compensation coots at first, something to train my new lens on whilst I was waiting for the grebes to perform as spectacularly as they had a couple of years previous.
There is of course no real reason for this obsession, I have not been commissioned by a magazine, I have not had any image requests from any of my agencies and whilst I already have a decent amount of reasonable quality coot images with agencies such as www.rspb-images.com my talent for startling ineptitude means that I don’t even know if I’ve ever sold one (just remembered that one of a silhouetted coot appeared in Birds magazine…but apart from that!) .
And yet I have spent hundreds of hours over the last few weeks sitting in 8 inches of water in a reservoir outflow taking picture after picture of coots. Coots fighting, coot portraits, coots running across the water or diving for food. Coot abstracts, coot close up, coots bathing or yawning, coots in silhouette or backlit. In a nutshell, if you want coots, I’m your man! And you’ll never guess where I’m going this evening! I was even up until about 3am last night (bit of a celebration which I’ll fill you in on in due course, no hints from you by the way Davies!!) but I was still out at 5.30 this morning, half asleeep I hasten to add, for another stint of potential coot action. Potential incidentally was all I got!!
Why the obsession? It’s just how I usually end up working. I’ll find a subject that displays a few aspects of behavior that I’d like to work on and then as time passes…….for the love of a medieval supernatural being (God!) I’m waffling again!!!!!
The point I am trying to make is this. I usually try to post only recent images, that way you get an idea of where I’ve been and what I’ve been producing. But I’ve now hit a snag! A biggy! I can’t show you my coots because they are potentially set aside for another purpose (try to contain your disappointment!). I am also working on trying to produce multiple image portfolios for 2020vision (more details of this tremendous project to follow, hopefully from the substantially more eloquent and less waffly Niall) and so I can’t show you any of those. In essence I am working harder than I have ever worked, I am producing better images than I have ever produced, on, for the first time ever, some of the best equipment out there and yet all I will be able to share with you over the coming months will be the odds and sods, the grab shot or one offs. For the time being at least I might have to return to the archives but for now, of all the time I’ve spent cooting these were the only two grebes that came anywhere near!