About 18 months ago I moved to Colorado Springs from Denver, a place where I really thought I would spend the rest of my working life. I love Denver, I really enjoyed my home, my neighborhood and my friends. The environment very much suits my personality and as a place to live, I was very content. Then reality happens. The move to Colorado Springs was spurred on by the tease of opportunity and another collection of experiences. The truth be told, things haven't quite worked out the way I would have liked but this post is not about that nor am I looking for any sympathy. I have a good life by almost any measure and am thankful for that. What does all this have to do with my photographic journey? Well I am not really sure. Let's vet it out. Colorado Springs should be a haven of inspiration to show of the beauty and diversity of Colorado. Actually I am sure it is. Colorado Springs sits right at the base of one of the tallest and most accessible mountains in the lower 48 states. This city has a population of just under a half million people and has collected accolades like "best small city" to live in by Money magazine and "Top City" to live in by Outside magazine. Only 65 miles from its big brother Denver allows for a bigger city escape and easy access to the mountains make it an outdoor enthusiasts dream. To go even further, Colorado Springs is a tourist city. Most, and I do mean most of the states top attractions in terms of people visits are in our just outside the city limits. The U.S. Air Force Academy, The US Olympic Center, Garden of the Gods, Pikes Peak, Manitou Cliff Dwellings, The Cog Railway, Seven Falls... the list goes on. With all this photographic fodder what's the problem? That's what I am trying to figure out. I am having a real hard time engaging in making pictures close to home. I have found myself booking weekend flights or taking weekend road trips to areas that for some reason I find more interesting or photogenic than the sites and scenes right in my backyard where thousands of others seem to WANT to come. I have tried to utilize others as a source of motivation. I attended a couple camera club meetings but found myself a bit irritated at the pixel peeping bureaucracy. I have tried to create a few personal "projects" and connect with like minded people through a few different sources but can't seem to connect with the right minded people, (no pun intended, for those of you not completely familiar with the stigma of Colorado Springs, it is a very conservative community. That was not the "right" I was referring to).
I am looking for a little help here. How does one get past some of those outside influences and getting back to looking close to home for inspiration. Am I suffering from an "I don't want to be here" mentality that is blocking my vision? I know I am missing an opportunity to create a collection of images that can tell an interesting story, but what story is that. What has helped you, people, projects just the brute force of willing through the creative void? I know that the desire and motivation to create does not come from starring up at a ceiling or gazing down into the bottom of a pint.
The camera is always in my car, my pocket, my briefcase or pack and close at hand so I am ready to get those shutters clicking again. Any advice or personal experience may help.