I'm in the middle of the beginning.
It's an awkward place to be. It feels like walking up to the edge of a cliff. The ocean is before me, the whipping breeze pushes me onwards, but if I leave solid ground I'm not sure what will carry me further.
It's the process creating a new body of work, of branching out into a new medium or subject matter. Nothing in my mind is fully conceived, but my mind isn't empty. It's coming, just slowly.
Not too long ago I had an office assistant come in to help organize the entire catalog of images spanning my photography career, and it totaled over 100,000. Looking through, reflecting, sorting, and categorizing those images seems to have re-wired my brain along with forcing me to reexamine why I spent all that time creating images (sometimes paid to do so, many times unpaid).
In looking through that catalog, I realized that it’s clear that the years of practice have made me proficient with a camera, but has left little time to practice much else. I'm comfortable with cameras, having I've lived and worked there for most of my career.
Now that I'm branching out into other mediums I am stripped of mastery, and uncomfortable. It feels childish even though I know that's just how a beginning feels. I feel mute and inarticulate even though I know that learning a medium is like learning to read--you start with the alphabet.
I'm still learning the alphabet song of where I'm going, but it's a start.