I snapped the shot above of me yesterday for no particular reason, and it kinda rocked my world.
I was outside shooting pictures of the late Spring snow storm we got and I decided to turn the camera around for a minute and grab a shot of me. When I imported it into my computer I was pretty surprised that the guy looking back at me was quite a bit older than I remembered. He has bags under his eyes and wrinkles on the sides, and his forehead was starting to form lines as well. I wasn’t upset or sad at all really, just a little surprised.
I really have an amazing life. I have a beautiful wife, awesome little kids, a great house, and we live in a beautiful place. We are always working to improve, but I am so happy with where we are at and I am proud of the years that are starting to show in my face, I really am. Bring on the lines.
There is one aspect of my life that has changed a little over the last couple of years, and I would like to move back towards, and that is the idea of living an art-full life.
For a very long time I was trying very hard to be a professional full time photographer. I came very close to this goal, but after tasting a bit of that life, I decided it actually wasn’t for me. I loved the process of shooting weddings (and still shoot them to this day) but I didn’t want to depend on photography for my income, it just wasn’t for me. I think this is where the shift from an art-full life happened though. I began work as a maintenance guy with Chipotle (which I love) and started to move on. In doing so though, I moved away from the idea of art being a part of my every day life
I do not regret this move at all to be honest. I became a homeowner and a father and I think I needed to grow up a little bit and accept some responsibility. This was a good move for me and I am proud of how I have grown. I think I am at a point now where I want to bring art back into my life in a significant way.
My goal for this next phase in my life is not just to listen to more music or watch more films, it is to view life differently, like I used to do. I want a sunset to bring me to tears, I want a film or song to sit with me for days, I want to take pictures because I feel a NEED to express what I am feeling, I want to journal for no other reason than to physically capture the beauty of what it means to be alive. I want to experience the beauty of the world as if it is a love note written to us from the creator. That is my goal for this next year.
I am not exactly sure how to accomplish this except to just try to slow down. I want to observe and soak in the beauty of life. I want to pursue beautiful music and films, I want to take photos constantly, and I want to write everyday. That is my goal for 2019.
A Fresh Start
Because of these new goals I decided to give NathanGilmer.com a huge refresh. For years this was my professional website, but ever since moving away from full-time photography it has been in a bit of a limbo. I didn’t know exactly what to do with it. This new goal for my life has also given me a new goal for this site.
From now on my website will be a journal of my pursuit to living an art-full life. I will post photo essays, writing, links, gear talk, and generally anything that interests me in pursuing this goal. I sincerely hope people will read it, but in this age of short social posts it isn’t that likely, but I don’t care. I am going to hold to the idea that there is always a need for honest thoughtful art and writing, and that will be my goal for this site.
I hope you will follow along and join me in the pursuit of an art-full life.