My wife (Tara) is amazing! It's as simple as that. If it wasn't for her I may not have ever picked up a DSLR. Not only is she incredibly supportive of my ridiculously early alarm calls to photograph sunrise but she actively encourages me. She also pushes me to succeed and challenges me which is uncomfortable at times as it takes me out of my comfort zone, but that's exactly where we need to be to achieve our goals.
I asked her to write this blog for me as an insight in to her side of my photography obsession. Here goes....
When Owen asked me to write a guest blog post titled the life of a photographer's wife I immediately thought, "Why the hell would anyone want to know about that?" However, he persisted in asking me and gave me some idea of the things he really wanted to share with his audience and I figured I'd give it a go. Of course, it could be a case of careful what you wish for. Owen may get more than he bargained for with this!
Where it all began
Whilst I don't want this to be in any way some sort of Mills and Boon love story I think it's important to explain a bit about us. To set the scene so to speak. Owen and I have been married for just over 6 months - not that long really. Yet in the time we've been together, just over 3 years, we've had some epic ups and downs! Throughout all of that time, him being a photographer has been an important part of our relationship. Being honest, I'm not sure I would have married someone who didn't have a passion for learning, a fire in their soul and an overwhelming drive to do something with their life that excites them!
When I first met Owen he'd not even got a camera, being a photographer was a bit of a pipe dream. I will never forget when we were on our first ever "non-date, date" and I asked him what his dream job would be. He said "A travel photographer" and I replied, "So what's stopping you then?"
Fast forward to today and I'm sitting in a cafe in Bowness in the Lake District whilst he's on a workshop with a group of Nikon devotees learning about taking photographs in this stunningly beautiful part of the world. As much as that thirst for knowledge and self-improvement makes me proud and happy, it comes with a bit of a downside.
Generally speaking, I am a bit of a control freak that doesn't relax very easily though I definitely love being outdoors and spending time on my own. I don't tend to accompany Owen on his 4am sunrise shoots or other mad treks across the landscape of our home county of Dorset. Apart from anything else I have a ridiculously low boredom threshold. If we are walking for miles, happy days I like that bit. It's the stopping, setting up, waiting for the light, blah blah blah. In fact, love him dearly though I do, half the time when he starts telling me what he's doing, I start thinking about defences against knife attacks or AK47's or something fun like that. (I teach krav maga so there is a real reason I am thinking about these things, I'm not a complete lunatic!)
I should perhaps apologise to all of you wonderful and talented photographers out there at my lack of interest, and yet I don't have the inclination. You see, you guys and ladies are artists. True magicians. The modern day photographer has to understand not only about their camera settings, and weather, and light and all that jazz, but nowadays you need to be a computer geek too. Being blunt all that stuff bores me rigid. All of it. Even posing for photographs does my head in. Which really is pretty cool.
You see, when I look at Owen I see the creative, gentle, talented artist that he is and he makes my heart glad. While I want to run around like a bull in a china shop doing machine gun take-downs and 2 minute sparring rounds, he revels in being still. He gets excited about being outdoors no matter what the weather is doing. He just can't wait to find better ways of capturing the beauty of nature. What makes being a photographer's wife so brilliant is because he brings to life things that I have no idea exist. Somehow our differences are what makes our relationship work. I respect his need to do his thing, to create his art. He respects my passion, krav maga. We don't have to understand it or even like it, we just nurture the differences between us and that makes the time we have together even better.
I love the fact that he wants to get up at 4am to capture sunrises. I love that he is so motivated to share his talent with the world. I love that he has the confidence to put his work out there and that he works his backside off. I love that he has been recognised more than once for his work and that he has had it exhibited.
The minutiae doesn't really matter. The fact I have to make sure the dog is well looked after today is fine. Having a slightly mental Jack Russell cross that barks at cyclists is problematic when you are in a tourist town and you want a coffee! Tying her up outside isn't really an option and you can't take her inside so you quickly improvise. Owen gets to do the thing he loves most in the world, and then we have the rest of the weekend to enjoy this beautiful place. Together. We will enjoy it together. If that means I don't get enough coffee today, so what. If that's the only sacrifice I need to make to be a photographer's wife, well, for me that is peachy fine and dandy!