Saturday, May 02, 2009

Practice - SoFoBoMo

The clock is ticking. The 61 days for SoFoBoMo began yesterday. I'm not starting my fuzzy month for about two weeks so I still have a bit of breathing room. While I think I have the individual pieces in place for the technical stuff, I am just as, if not more, apprehensive than ever. All the technical stuff is worthless if I can't put together 35 good images for the PDF book. That is beginning to scare me.

First of all it is hard to make 35 good images in a year let alone in a month. I don't even have a month to make images because of our schedule. The most time I seem to be able to put together in one continuous time period in one place is a little less than two weeks no matter when I start. During the time I have to make images I will not be able to go out everyday. As a little test, I went out yesterday. Made 45 images. Processed them. Printed eight. Three of them might make the cut if I was doing SoFoBoMo now. At this rate, I'll need to shoot at least 12 days. I'm cutting it close.

All of this looking at numbers makes me think of a story in the book Art and Fear. A ceramics teacher divided a new class into two groups. One group would be graded on the quantity of the work they produced. How many pounds of pots they produced. The other group would be graded on the quality. They only needed to produce one perfect pot. When grading time came around, the best pots were made by the quantity group because they churned out lots of work and in the process learned from their work and improved. The group that only had to produce one pot had worried so much about perfection that they ended up with a lot of theory and "dead clay."

I need to shoot, shoot, shoot. This idea is really making me think about my project and being able to have access to it a lot so I can make many, many images. The other thing, between now and when I start the project I need to get my eye and camera connections at peak performance. I'm going to shoot everyday.

9 comments:

Deb Hall ~ Zocalo Folk Art said...

Got it. Shoot MORE. That was an excellent example given, and I needed to hear that now. Thanks!

Joanna said...

I love that story about the pots. It applies to all aspects of life, I think.

Karen said...

That ceramics class analogy makes a very good point. It's easy to be paralyzed by a sense of "getting it right" straight off. Thank you for reminding me to take a broader perspective on the exercise.

Anita Jesse said...

Great story. Too often, I need to be reminded of that lesson. Thanks.

Jonna said...

I too liked the analogy. You are getting stoked up for the race and we are lucky to be running with you. I love the background you are giving us, great blog post.

dsr said...

Hi Billie: Anxious to see your completed book. Was thinking of doing one too... but too much else going on right now.

Billie said...

Oh, you guys are putting the pressure on me. When I think about doing Sofobomo, I think about my process. About just doing the work. But then I realize that other people are waiting to see what gets done.

pitchertaker said...

You don't need 35 great, brilliant, OMG heavenly images for the book, Billie. Some of the images, while good, should be bridges between the really good ones. Books are like that, they need to ebb and flow. I think that 35 super winners would be hard to look at one right after the other.

Billie said...

pitchertaker, I wrote 35 good images. But I'm hoping that a few of the 35 good ones will be great.

Now you bring up another challenge...sequencing, ebb and flow. But I can't worry about that until I start making images.