Why I do what I do

This blogpost. Read it. It’s very inspiring.

Got me thinking about my passion and why I do what I do. My attentionspan is rather short so I need a couple of things to be passionate about. So yes, obviously I love photography, but I also love writing, making music, handicrafts like knitting, crochet and sewing, I haven’t done any painting for a long time but that was one of my passions too. And I like cooking and baking pies.

My top three passions, photography, writing and making music are connected in more ways than them just being a creative activity. I started making music when I could barely walk (the violin, oh yes, so rock ‘n’ roll), I wrote my first songlyrics at I think the age of 10 (I just wrote my own lyrics to a song by Queen) and when I got an acoustic guitar when I was around 15 I immediately started writing my own songs. It was the best way for me to express myself, even today my songs are so personal, there’s no way I could write a song which has absolutely nothing to do with me. But at the same time that what makes it so scary for me to perform: I feel too vulnerable because hey, you’re hearing my most inner thoughts and that’s just scary! It’s like reading my diary to people!

I’m not sure when I started writing exactly. I remember exactly where it was though: we were on holiday in Singapore, we were staying in the YWCA and my mother gave me a red notebook and told me to start keeping a diary, just write down what I did that day. So I did, and have done ever since up to about a year or two ago. Besides writing in my diary I also wrote stories and made my own magazine (wrote and designed it=cut and paste and then photocopy the whole thing). A Manic Street Preachers fanzine to be precise, called Channel Chic. I had about five subscribers all over the country so that was pretty cool for me. Why did I do it? Because I wanted to, because I loved doing it. I just loved (and still do) making things and it’s even more great if other people enjoy to read/see/hear what I make. But other people are not why I do things, I do it first and foremost for myself. No other reason than it just being the way I express myself, it’s completely natural for me. It’s like breathing: why do you breathe and do you even think about doing it? No, because you just do.

Photography was the passion I started after the first two. Again, I can’t remember exactly when, but once again it was in Singapore (ah yes, I have plenty of good memories of all the holidays in Singapore). I got a Ricoh snapshot camera, which in fact I still have somewhere, the sturdy little thing. Wow, now I think of it, once again it was my mother that gave me the camera (did I tell you she bought me my first guitar as well?) and just told me to take pictures of the world as I saw it. So I did, and, once again, have done ever since. Didn’t stop. The tools got better though, when I graduated I bought my first digital camera (a Sony Cybershot with 3 megapixels, that was pretty amazing back then!) and now I’m looking to see if I can upgrade my D5000 to a D7000 with better lenses. And why do I photograph? Because I love capturing what I see, it’s as easy as that.

So how does my dad come into the equation here? Well, I guess you could say the way I have to write and make music and photograph is some sort of missionary urge in me. And him being a minister of church and a former missionary and all, I guess that’s where that comes from. Telling stories, showing people to look (differently) at things, show them the world, show them how things are and maybe how they can be… I just have to, like (I think) he feels he has to just do what he does.

So to return to why I do what I do: I don’t know, there’s no other way for me, I just have to. Not doing it just isn’t an option, it’d be like to stop breathing, that’s just not possible. And it’s what makes me happy and gets me through the darker moments, and I’m very grateful for it. Passions make life beautiful and help you through the difficult times. So please share your passions, I love to hear your stories!

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