(77/365) Title: A Glimmer of Hope. It's over... It's done. I feel just like Frodo did at the end of his journey. Today was quite momentous as I passed my oral exam for my Master's degree in Applied Physics. I thought I would be feeling quite elated right now, but it does feel rather bittersweet.
These last few months in graduate school have been quite difficult for me. During the process of writing my thesis, there were many days where I lacked motivation to continue in the program. I fell into many periods of melancholy as I began to realize that this hasn't been the best fit for me. I suppose I'm sharing this experience as my journey into photography was born out of the trials I have endured in getting this far.
Photography is something I had thought about trying over the years. However, it was only during another one of those bad days in October when one thing led to another and I started browsing online to buy my very first camera. Early on, I stumbled upon a video on Sean Tucker's (@seantuck
) YouTube channel where he interviewed another photographer, Fiona Larkins (@fiona_lark
). She mentioned that photography became a way to help her cope with the difficult times she faced. Practicing this art really forced her to focus her mind on the present moment and on her surroundings rather than her personal troubles.
This has really resonated with me. Walking around with a camera in hand has gotten me to practice being more mindful of my environment. It really forces me to stay present and attentive as many of the photographs I've taken have emerged from noticing spontaneous opportunities. Maybe it's fair to say that taking photographs has slowly become something resembling a spiritual practice for me. Nonetheless, I can say that practicing photography has truly helped me get through this difficult period in my life.
I don't exactly know what will come next in my career. I do know that I will either end up working for another professor for my PhD or leave school altogether. But as with all things, only time will tell.