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When I first started this blog, I didn’t really have a clear idea of where it would lead or if it would even last as long as it has. All I knew was that I had something I wanted to share with others, and maybe in the process learn something about my own artistic journey. In fact, it has taught me a great deal about what motivates me, why I love my work, and perhaps given others motivation to dream big and follow their passions.

Almost two years later, I think I have a much clearer direction now and decided I would change the name of the blog to something more descriptive. “Beyond the Lens” truly summarizes my approach to landscape photography, in that for me it has always been about the feeling and emotion, the connection to nature, and its ability to transport me to a place within myself where everything is perfect. Standing at the edge of a serene and reflective lake before sunrise; light rays penetrating the cold fog bringing clarity to the beauty always present, like a melody that lifts the spirit. This is what I want to capture with a camera, allowing the experience to push me creatively and positively.

It’s also more than just work, but an outlook on life in general and how everything we do defines who we are. An artist brings the sum of his life’s experiences to and through his work, and a single press of the shutter says as much about his view of the world as does how he wants the world to view him.

For me it remains a belief that I can achieve my dreams, and live a life that allows me to follow my passion. Hard work, perseverance, dedication, and a little luck are the keys, and definitely in that order! Practice and commitment will get your farther down the road to your goals than pure talent ever will. And as I’ve mentioned here before, I also enjoy inspiring and helping others. Regardless of whether you are a photographer or not, it is a real plus for me, and I hope I can accomplish that in some small way.

So while I will talk about cameras, computers, software, and all of the other important items that are an integral and fun part of the photographic craft, it is the intangible aspects that really excite me, those things that lie beyond the technique and technology, that make a great image really special.

When we get right down to it, and get rid of the distractions of modern society, what’s left are the memories and moments that really mean something. Isn’t that what life is really all about?

RR Jr

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