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ARTISTIC OPTIMISM

Where do we gain artistic optimism from? Some ideas:

  1. Ignorance: The child-like ignorance of the outside world and what other artists are doing. The ability to approach artwork from a “carte blanche” approach — that nobody else has done it before (but you!)
  2. Physiological overpower: To be physiologically hyper-healthy is key. If we are in poor or weak health, we have no optimism in life. If you’re hyper-healthy, and in peak physical shape, you feel as if you can conquer the world.
  3. Creative stimulants: I love coffee, 100% cocoa powder, and cocoa nibs to get me going. To me, these stimulants give birth to movement in my legs and muscles. This is what generally gets me going.
  4. Hyper-vanity: What is the point of pursuing artistic art-works if others have done it before you, and may have done it “better” than you ever can? Rebuttal: if you have hyper-vanity, then you don’t care whether others have done it or not. You pursue art for your own personal vanity, and to fulfill your own personal curiosity! For example, there is no “logical” reason to have a child, nor do we care whether our kids will become “as good” as children who have come before. We have children to fulfill our own ego and personal vanity– and this is good!
  5. Shaking things up once in a while: Perhaps the benefit of traveling is to simply shake things up a bit. To mix the water and oil again. To hit the thermometer a few times to get it working again. A life with too much stability is bad for art. Injecting some randomness, chaos, and chance is good for our artistic spirit.

Motivation

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ERIC KIM NECK STRAP MARK II x Ricoh GR II x RICOH MAFIA Artwear

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PASSION, not Discipline

Not a matter of discipline, but something else?

A thought:

We often berate ourselves for not being “disciplined” enough for x, y, z — but perhaps this is the wrong way of thinking.

When we think of ‘discipline’, we think that we are being disciples of someone and following in their footsteps. Following their moral code of ethics and such.

But if you’re following yourself, perhaps it isn’t discipline we are seeking. Instead, to prize ourselves and to prefer ourselves over others.

For example, I don’t need “discipline” to go to the gym everyday (or several times a day). It is my passion. I love it for the sake of it! In fact, I try to figure out ways to modify my life IN ORDER for me to go to the gym whenever I want. This isn’t discipline — it is passion.

Another idea– blogging. I don’t have to force myself to write everyday. In fact, I blog because it is my passion. I never force myself to write. The words simply stream out of my body and soul! It is my passion– it is my play, and it is the way I expel my creative force.

The passion of photography and image-making

If you gotta force yourself to go out and photos — perhaps you’re doing it wrong.

Discover new mysteries in photography

Mexico City, 2020 child #streettogs
Mexico City, 2020 child #streettogs

Perhaps our main discouragement in photography is this:

We feel we have no more NEW mysteries to discover.

But perhaps this can be the root of our artistic optimism?

ERIC


Motivation

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ERIC KIM NECK STRAP MARK II x Ricoh GR II x RICOH MAFIA Artwear

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Why Street Photography?

Why street photography? Some reasons:

  1. Insanely fun: I keep finding street photography fun, challenging, and interesting. There is no finality to it; I keep changing as a street photographer over time, I keep accumulating experiences, I keep traveling, and I keep making new photos!
  2. Thrilling: Street photography for adrenaline junkies. The thrill and rush of shooting street photography. The rush associated with shooting, sometimes “getting caught”, or the social high talking with your subjects.
  3. Art: Ultimately to me, the point of life is to make art. Street photography is art with people. As long as you live, never stop making art!
  4. Street photography as optimism in life: Street photography as one of the best tools to conquer depression. To travel, find a new reason to live, interact with people, and to strengthen your body, mind, and physiological functions!

Street photography 101

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STREET PHOTOGRAPHY STARTER KIT: Everything You Need to Master Street Photography.


Never Stop Shooting

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Street Photography Philosophy

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ERIC KIM x HENRI NECK STRAP

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Street Photography Ideas

Mad men. NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

Street Photography Composition Techniques


STREET NOTES.

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STREET NOTES MOBILE EDITION x RICOH GR II

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LEARN FROM THE MASTERS OF STREET PHOTOGRAPHY

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Timeless wisdom from the masters of street photography.

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FUNDAMENTALS OF STREET PHOTOGRAPHY

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Intermediate Street Photography Articles

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In-depth guides on street photography:

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The best equipment for street photography:

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Street Photography Editing and Workflow

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Learn From the Masters of Street Photography

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The Masters of Photography

Prague, 1968. Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos
Prague, 1968. Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

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Why Do We Get Bored?

Why do we get bored? Because lack of challenge, difficulty, risk, randomness, or chaos!

Solution:

  1. Add more difficulty in our lives: Powerlifting style, increase one-rep max for deadlift.
  2. Take more risks, particularly social risks (or entrepreneurial risks).
  3. Inject more randomness, chaos, and uncertainty into our everyday lives: Less algorithm-generated, more randomness in human interactions. We can also ‘disrupt’ our everyday habits in small ways; take a new route home, get home without using Google Maps, trying new foods, eating at new places, and experimenting with new routines.
  4. Travel to difficult places: For example, traveling to Havana for a week (no wifi).
  5. Most challenging and fun is to create! Create blog posts, photos, videos, beats, and share/publish them to your own website/blog.
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MAX OUT

It seems to me, the best way to live life is to attempt to MAX OUT. In weight-lifting, strive towards the powerlifting “one rep max” style, and keep attempting MORE until you MAX OUT, and fail.

In business, work, and life– keep seeing how far you can push the envelope.

A life where you are constantly maxing out will mean a lot of failure. But it will also mean a life which is more interesting, more forbidden, more dangerous, and more epic.

MAX OUT — don’t be the last out!
ERIC

Philosophy by KIM >

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TRUST YOURSELF.

Who is the best person to trust? Trust yourself. Trust your gut. Trust your personal taste in aesthetics. Trust your own moral judgement, your own ethics, without worrying that someone is “looking over your shoulder” or “watching your every action”.

No heaven or hell. No (conscious) afterlife. Every decision you take and make is a mini-experiment. You learn via “trial and error” with real decision-making what is “good” or “bad” for you (useful/harmful).

Ignore metrics, numbers, followers, likes, and money.

Your true judge is only you.
ERIC