Too personal? / by Daniel Whiston

There are some huge huge changes coming up for me in 2016 (relocation being the biggest) and since I am trying to keep this little blog experiment going (Creative writing ability of a potato) it has made me think back through the past few years of my life and look at how much things have changed for me since I first dug myself out of a hole and picked up a camera in 2009.
Below pretty much sums up how much I've improved with my photography over the years (2009 vs 2015) but that is just thanks to a lot of practice and better equipment. I wanted to talk about the personal changes.

 Pictures I took of London musician Laura Groves (Former Blue Roses) 2015 vs 2009 

Pictures I took of London musician Laura Groves (Former Blue Roses) 2015 vs 2009 

So thinking about the events that started all of this change back in 2009 I questioned if I should actually be writing about it on a "professional" photography website but it's something that the majority of people these days have either dealt with/are dealing with or know someone that is/has. After a bad breakup and various things happening to my family at the start of 2009 I was suffering from depression and was in a pretty deep hole for the majority of the year. It wasn't a good time and after spending some time in hospital, seeing various psychologists, taking antidepressants and causing all of my friends and family all kinds of worry, one morning I woke up with a feeling of clarity that I didn't want or need to be this way anymore. I took some advice from my mother about doing something to occupy my time and decided since I was always interested in photography that I'd get a camera to see what I could do with it.

So with the bad bit out of the way I started to photograph everything and anything that got in my way. I would travel to Derby each weekend to visit friends and once I started to get more confident decided to start looking for more organized things to capture like festivals and Christmas events. I had also smuggled my camera into a few gigs in Birmingham and Nottingham and got a bunch of badly composed shots with too much flash and fuzz everywhere to even mention but I was starting to look into how to actually get into places like the Birmingham O2.
It was when I was at an event for a city farm that I photographed a group of people performing Capoeira and was later contacted by one of them asking If i wanted to shoot a gig for a musician they had been managing as well as some promo shots.

 WEYA Festival jam session

WEYA Festival jam session

Since that time I have met and become friends with so many amazing and talented people and been given many opportunities to attend events and gigs where I've been able to photograph a lot of my favorite images over the years including the WEYA festival that was held in Nottingham where I managed to have many of my images from the event printed in newspapers and magazines covering the event in countries such as France, Italy Mauritius and Pakistan as well as meeting some more life long friends from all over the world.

 Deaf Bridges at Nottingham Hockley Hustle 2015

Deaf Bridges at Nottingham Hockley Hustle 2015

So, Since this has already gone on far too long the moral is that even if you are at your very lowest and feel there is nothing left for you there is always something better waiting around the corner for you if you just push yourself enough and don't let it keep you from the person you can and want to be.

If i can do it then surely who can't ;)