Maria Popova and her blog, Brain Pickings, are a never-ending source of inspiration for me. Maria spends so much time quoting other people, and not nearly enough time quoting herself.
This particular quote comes from this post, and it neatly pinpoints a topic that has been on my mind a lot lately: who/what am I? I've been struggling with my inability to put myself into one particular box and stay there; I can't seem to be the same person or think the same thoughts one moment to the next.
The sociologist major in me is shouting that labels are social constructs and that I don't have to be any one thing, and I love the concept of "being in flux" (hell, I named my photography business Ebb & Flowtography, which is a play on that very idea), but at the same time it makes it difficult to create a brand for myself, which (the ever-elusive) "They" say is necessary if you are starting your own business. I keep hearing about artists needing to find their "niche", but what if I don't have one, or what if mine is less of a niche and more of a crevasse? I am nothing if not "a locus of exceptions, a complex cluster of contradictions", and I wouldn't want to be anything different, but I do wonder sometimes if it's detrimental to achieving what I want to with my photography. It certainly leaves me feeling a little directionless sometimes. But if we're all human beings perpetually in flux, then all of the fantastic, creative people that I see making seemingly branded and consistent work must be struggling with the same thing, right? Or have they somehow been able to overcome it?
In the typical blog formula of today, now would be the time for me to be self-helpy and give some answers to the questions above, but alas, mine is a blog of examination and conversation (and existation and exploration and pictures), not so much of solutions. Anyone have any thoughts on all of this? I'd love to hear from you.