Live Encore: Diving Deeper on Intentional Life Documentation | Nathaniel Drew | Skillshare

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Live Encore: Diving Deeper on Intentional Life Documentation

teacher avatar Nathaniel Drew, Online Content Creator

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (54m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Getting Started

    • 3. Deciding What to Share

    • 4. Building Reflective Routines

    • 5. Dealing With Distraction

    • 6. Q&A

    • 7. Final Thoughts

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About This Class

Learn more about how to use photography more intentionally to capture the moments that matter.

For the past several years, Nathaniel Drew has spent a lot of time thinking about how to use his love of photography and videography to more intentionally capture the most precious moments of his life. In fact, he published a whole class on the topic! In this spinoff session—recorded using Zoom and featuring participation from the Skillshare community—Nathaniel dives deeper into things he’s learned since publishing his initial course and answers common student questions about this somewhat abstract topic.

Throughout the 55-minute casual conversation, Nathaniel will meander through topics such as:

  • How to find the things that have personal meaning to you and capture them without judgment about how the photos look
  • How to be more in the moment even when you’re trying to document things
  • How to build routines for reflection and documentation, and how to let them evolve naturally over time

Along the way, Nathaniel will share plenty of examples from his own documentation journey to make things as clear as possible. Perfect for creatives of any level, you'll leave with a clearer picture of the role of documentation in your own life. You don't need anything but yourself to participate (and maybe a notebook to jot down all the great ideas and deep thoughts that come up.)


While we couldn't respond to every question during the session, we'd love to hear from you—please use the class Discussion board to share your questions and feedback.

Meet Your Teacher

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Nathaniel Drew

Online Content Creator

Top Teacher

Thanks to a very strange series of events that took place in our universe, I exist. It’s weird, I can’t explain it.

My interest in clarity and intentionality stems from a desire to take as much of it all (life) in while I can. I don’t want to get in my own way.

Born to two immigrants from Argentina, I grew up in the Pacific Northwest.

I felt deeply unsatisfied with staying in the same place for the rest of my life, which is what pushed to spend as much of my time as possible doing what I call slow travel which is a more low-cost, sustainable way of spending time abroad.

This gives me the chance to learn the languages of the places that I’m living in, which I find extremely enjoyable and fulfilling.

A major motivation for me to p... See full profile

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1. Introduction: I feel like I've been documenting a lot of my life for most of my life, but it feels like it really started to happen very intentionally in 2015, so six years ago now at this point. My name is Nathaniel Drew and I'm a content creator online. I really love creating short films of my life and my adventures. I'm also working on a book now. Today I'm going to be talking about intentional documentation. This is a spin-off of the class that I already created on documenting your life. I'm here to answer a lot of questions and share a few more examples and insights on intentional documentation to hopefully make it as clear as possible. We're going to go in depth on the process because I saw there were all kinds of questions that I'd like to answer on this topic. It's a little bit abstract and I want it to be as clear as possible so that it feels like it makes sense. Like you know, how you're navigating your own documentation of your own life. Intentional documentation has really offered an incredible tool to make sense from my own experiences. I can really pull the stories and the memories and the insights that I get from a particular experience and have them more accessible and just help me understand what my life is about and what is important to me. It's a little bit abstract, is a little bit out there, but it's really something that has kept me coming back to this over and over again. I originally shot this live with the Skillshare team with a live audience, or I fielded live questions. Thank you so much for joining. Let's dive right in. 2. Getting Started: My name is Obriana, I'm a senior producer on the content team at Skillshare, and I use she, her, hers pronouns. We are, of course, very excited to be with you all today for our live class with multi-hyphenate online content creator, Nathaniel Drew. So Nathaniel, very excited to have you here today, will you just tell us a little bit about who you are and what it is you do? Yes. Thank you for that introduction. Hello, everybody, really good to see some of your faces. Up at the top, I see four faces, and if I click the arrow, I can see more of your faces, so I'll check in every once in a while. Sometimes I'll pop into the chat, but I get a little bit distracted by it, so right now, I'm not in it. Just so I can stay focused on things that I'm talking about. In the planning for this, I imagine, it's fairly clear, based off of how we've presented so far, but this is largely inspired by, well, I see my own face now, that's crazy. That's distracting. As I was saying, one of the ways we were presenting this is to build this off of the class that I already created. Thank you for switching off of my face. I really appreciate that. Offer the class of intentional documentation, and I really want to create a lot of time over the next hour to answer as many questions as possible. I categorize them into two categories. It can be, technical questions which are all welcome, and maybe a little bit more specific, but I'm happy to answer them. Then there's more broad questions about like, how do I know if this is worth documenting? How do I find the confidence to start capturing moments? What if my life is boring? Things like that I'm really more than happy to talk about those things because these are things that I've spent a lot of time thinking about. These are things that I encounter still to this day, and especially, as the world changes, and we've all had to adapt in so many different ways. I think this can be a really cool tool to navigate our day-to-day lives and our experiences, and be a method to understand our experiences. So once again, thank you for all of you tuning in, and I see 96, that is insanity. I don't remember how many people came in last time, but this feels like a lot more. Breaking all the records. We're going to get to triple digits I feel it. Well, so I wanted to share screen just for starters really quick. Let me see if I can do this. So this is one of two analog photos that I wanted to share. This one was shot in Iceland, and I like this photo, and I can't even fully explain why I don't think it's necessarily like an extraordinarily remarkable photo from any composition standpoint or anything. But this photo has a lot of personal meaning to me and I don't know, I have my own very biased perspective of this, but I almost feel like you can feel it with this photo even before I explain to you why. But I think even providing that explanation can offer a whole much more meaning to this photo that may or may not extend beyond just me. But the fact that this photo has meaning to me is already enough. I basically went on a little road trip with my dad, and this is just a photo that I took while we were on the road, and you can't quite make out what's on the dash, but we had our stuff there, and we have so many hours to talk and the weather would change so quickly from rain to sunny to clouds. I just capture this moment with one of my analog cameras. This is unedited, I almost never edit my analog photos, and that's a big plus, and I'm happy to talk about it more a little bit later, but that's actually a positive in terms of ease and simplicity. Because I feel like so often they just come out and they look amazing, and sometimes they don't come out great at all. Whatever, I totally miss the focus or something, but sometimes it comes out like this. I just wanted to share that because I feel like there can never be enough examples of analog photography in our very digital world. Let me stop sharing this super fast, and then I'll share the other one. This is the other photo that I wanted to share. This is a photo of somebody that is very important to me in my life, and I'm not going to go into the details. I don't think it really matters. But I wanted to show this photo because I took this photo and then I sent it to that person, and then they sent it to close people and their close circle. This person told me that the people on their circle told them that it felt like a photo that they captured who they were as a person, which is like the biggest possible compliment you could give me. Now, I think the really interesting thing about this photo is that if I took it with my iPhone, I would've deleted it because his eyes are closed. It looks like a messed-up photo from a digital standpoint, I would have probably taken several a bunch, and then pick the one where he's smiling, and it's sending exactly what I want, and really, I had one shot with this analog photo. I really treat them preciously, they're not free. when this was developed, a few weeks or few months later, I saw it and it really took me aback and I appreciate it and then I sent it over, curious about the reaction, and then they told me what they told me. But I wanted to show this also as an example because I think what we can get really caught up on is I've talked about perfectionism before, and getting a specific final result of some kind. But the magic of documenting first approach is that you're not worried about any final results. You're just capturing moments. You're just essentially following your curiosities. This is an important person for me, and so I wanted to take a photo of this person. The result didn't matter, what mattered was that I took the photo. Then came the surprise a few weeks or few months later when the film was developed. just wanted to start with a little, share those two photos. You may or may not find them beautiful. That I don t think that's really the point, because beauty is very subjective, and this might just be a boring photo, or a photo that really doesn't have very much meaning to you, and that's fine, That's fair. You probably don't know this person. But I think this is a deeply personal experience, the process of documenting your life. This feels like an important piece in the puzzle of me figuring out what's important to me, who are the people that are important to me? How I want to spend my time and I'm informed by the way that this image or the previous image makes me feel. 3. Deciding What to Share: I guess from there, that was sort of the intro that I had in mind. We can now dive into some of the topics that we planned to talk about. Unless there are any questions, maybe in the chat directly on that to riff off of. No big questions yet. Amanda says, I love that. Just follow your curiosities and document first. Definitely helps you live in a moment and capture real moments. I agree with that and I love the way that it takes the pressure off a feeling like I need to deliver or create a technically good photograph. It's like no, just be curious and be in the moment. Yeah, absolutely. I think it's really important to differentiate, to get away from or around the word good or great, or perfect. I don't think the goal should be to do something that's good. I don't even know what that means. It just feels like a really difficult label to shoulder all the time. I think it's a lot more interesting to look at things from like wow, I'm just curious about this. Let's see if there's something I can discover from this or this is interesting to me, I'm going to document, I'm going to capture it and then maybe later on I'll figure out why I found it so interesting. Because life itself is not always good. Rarely is that how the word you would use to describe it. You get so much more variation. Yeah, absolutely. Cool. I think one of the other topics that I wanted to talk about that we prepared ahead of time is one question I got a lot I think in response to the class and also just in general is what do I do if my life is boring? I'm stuck inside all day or what have you or I just don't do really exciting things. There's so many ways I think to answer this question. Ultimately, I think one of the things that I often offer is that obviously, the unique combination of your experiences and your memories and your conversations and where you're from, it can't be replicated. As I've said before, just by virtue of existing, you have something to offer the world, but I think there's an interesting element to all of this that revolves around this idea of belief. There has to be something within you that believes, even though nobody else is paying attention, nobody else cares when a first curiosity might germinate. There's got to be something within you that believes, wow, this is worth capturing, this is worth paying attention to. Again, feel free to ask any questions in the conversation because I sometimes can get quite abstract with this. I want to make this as concrete as possible. I'm happy to answer any questions that pop up but one of the things that I think helps contribute to belief, if you will, to take a photo or to write a blog post, or to make a film, or make a painting, draw what have you is space. It's this other very abstract idea but oftentimes, I feel like to be able to share something with the world, especially the Internet, which can be so overwhelming, it can be so many people and it can feel so vulnerable and raw because it's just so out there and so permanent. I need space to do things that are very, very private. Nobody's going to see, nobody's going to know that I did this, I just need to do it for me. For example this photo. The photos that are shared are a great example because ultimately everything starts as I'm just documenting and I have no intention of sharing this with anybody because I'm not worried about it being good, I'm just not even thinking about that. I'm just like, wow, that is a beautiful x, y, and z, a beautiful mountain. I'm going to take a photo of it and we'll figure it out later. Having that space, having that kind of permission leads to all kinds of really wonderful surprises that come later on. But it's a step that you can't skip. What I've found too is that when you start to create standards which have their own role and their own purpose but when you create some of these things, it can squeeze the space out. Then there's no more space to be experimental and you're just doing what you know works and you can't fail. There's this fear of failure. One of the examples that are often cite is the other channel that I created on YouTube, which I think a lot of people were very confused about, is like this is pretty similar to what you're already doing, but it doesn't matter. It doesn't have to make sense. It just has to trick my own brain in allowing me to do this idea that I'm curious about, but I don't know how's going to work, but whatever. I just need a low-stakes environment to be able to do it. Well, I have a question surfacing some from the chat. How do you know which experience if something you've documented is meant to be shared? If you go in with this mindset, I'm just creating this for myself. Yeah. Is it selective sharing or is there a certain motivation behind the pieces you do share? Yeah, those are great questions. All sharing when it comes to the Internet is selective. If I shared every photo that I took, I can't even imagine what that would look like but basically, it's just not possible with attention constraints. Also, I think storytelling is very much about what you don't say oftentimes. Now, I think to be more specific on how I pick the moments that work for me using the two examples that I shared, it really goes down to again, a feeling that I have these photos give me a certain feeling. I look at the photo while we're driving and I'm there and I want to share that feeling with other people. It doesn't matter the details or specifics, the exact composition, what have you. It's just when I look at the photo it makes me feel a certain way and I want to share that feeling with other people. The other part, again is what I've already mentioned before, but I'm happy to field as many questions as possible because it is an abstract concept and I want to make this clear and understandable. But it's this belief, it's like this is worth sharing. There's going to be people out there they're going to be like, okay, whatever, like I don't care or this isn't good or what have you. Everybody really has the right to have whatever opinion they have on whatever it is that I create. In a sense, when I post something online, in a certain way, it's no longer mine anymore. But there is that belief that this is worth sharing because it means enough to me. I think it's helpful to divorce multiple different ideas that we have squished together about this, for example, that it will ever not be scary. I think it will always be scary. It will always be scary to share things that are meaningful to you. The second you care about something, it gets scary, but you don't have to put it out in the world if you feel like it doesn't feel right. I think what matters is capturing based off of curiosities. Then later on you can make the decision on whether you want to share it or not if that desire, that belief that this is worth sharing is bigger than the fear. 4. Building Reflective Routines: I wonder if you could speak to a little bit, and this is a very broad thing. But never is not scary, if it's always scary, why is it worth it? Yeah. What's the flip side? What do you get out of it when you do share an image like that? I'm answering it myself, but I'll let you. No. Yeah. No, totally. I mean, I think one of the things that really propels me forward in doing this, in capturing these moments in the first place and then sharing them which are two different mechanisms, two different systems, is that it is like a accompanist for me. This is very personally meaningful to me and that I like that there are stakes. I like that it's exciting in a way, because I'm afraid in a way. It's important to me to not feel too comfortable, I think because if it is too comfortable, I feel like not a whole lot is being said. But what I'm trying to say here is that uncomfortable, scary, it doesn't have to look a particular way. It doesn't have to be like a really edgy photo or what have you. It could just be a personal thing that you captured. But I think the fear is actually a good sign and I think paying attention to that and following that can help you develop your voice further in whatever outlet that you're pursuing. In that way, and again, I don't want to entirely make this something that has to be commercialized or that you have to make money from, because I think there's beauty in having a hobby of, I'm just going to take photos and I'm not going to try and make money from this. But going through the process of capturing things and then sharing them and following those fears, can be a method to whether you want to or not make it a career. Can be a method to hone in on your voice and figure out what you actually care about. I feel strongly that if you ask any artist out there, they've done this intentionally or no. It was something that they stumbled upon in some way or another. Again, it doesn't have to look like any particular thing. It might not be photos at all. I guess I'll take a quick little tangent here on journaling, so that we cover a couple of the other formats that I covered in the class. But I'm not bullet journaling anymore at all, and that isn't to say that it's not a good thing to do. I did it for a long time and it really helped me stay organized and get clarity on certain things. But it's not a journaling format, if you will, that I enjoy anymore. That joy isn't sparked anymore and I no longer do it and I think there's no harm in changing methods and letting certain things go. I think what's important is that in the space of bullet journaling, I fill that void with other methods that feel meaningful to me, to still document my life and capture where I'm at in a spiritual or an emotional sense or what have you. But I didn't feel like it was something that needed to continue and I guess I mentioned that, because nobody can give you the exact answer. If you go on YouTube, you can easily find hundreds, probably thousands of tutorials and communities of millions of people doing it and that can be great and it can be a starting place to lead you to somewhere else. But it doesn't necessarily have to be that way. So I wanted to touch on that. I don't know if there are questions also on journaling and what not, but yeah. Yeah. One question here. Do you schedule a specific time in the day to brain dump and maintain a regular journaling routine? Or is it as things happen that you want to remember you write them down? Yeah. When in the days when you are journaling, maybe? I'll just like I'm going to grab something [inaudible] back here. What I've come to discover about myself, is that I'm an incredibly, I think the reason why I spent so much time thinking about organizing my life and systems is that I'm a really like, I want to use the word floaty person. I'm really out there in my mind. I feel like if I don't impose structure or I felt for a long time that if I didn't impose a lot of structure, that I wouldn't be able to get anything done. I think a lot of that structure in more recent times has loosened up. I impose a lot less structure. Not zero, I definitely still need a certain basis of a decent sleep schedule, for example. But I don't have a morning routine anymore. I don't. A lot of things have gone out the window and I'm fine. It turns out I'm fine. I have this. I think I showed something like this on my last Skill Share live. But I think what I do, I think the way I want to answer that question is, I just make sure there are tools and resources very available wherever for whenever I need that kind of support for clarity. But there isn't a time of day, there isn't an exact method. I just have my notepads for example and I love having the ability when I'm feeling like confused or overwhelmed to draw and write things out and it goes through periods. There are certain phases where this has a lot more important for me and then other phases where I feel like I just need to step back. I was just scribbling about, here is the perils of the spiritual journey. This is a thing that I was just doodling about where I feel like when you embark on the spiritual journey, there's a period I drew this here. This is not a completed idea, but I'm happy to share this with you guys. I drew this up top here where this is the starting point and this is where you think you're going or something within you is leading you. But then there's this period here and that's a period of intense vulnerability inherent in the process of exploration during the spiritual journey where you're particularly vulnerable. I haven't really pulled my conclusions just yet. But that was something that was just bouncing around and making a lot of noise in my head and one day I just sat down and drew this out and wrote it out, and it was just sitting right next to me. I think that's how this works. It's if you think about it, we all know that you can't time when an idea will hit you, or when inspiration will hit. I'm not saying that you shouldn't show up, it's important that you show up. But I think what I've realized is that, I may have ideas on a daily basis, but they're not going to hit at 08:00 A.M. every day. So it doesn't make a lot of sense for me to journal at 08:00 A.M. every day. Again, that's just my own personal process though. I wouldn't even base this off of the type of person. But this just might be the point you are in life, where you just feel like you need more structure or less structure. So again, I felt like I got a little tangent there, but I hope that answered. I think your methods in capturing your life and documenting and organizing your thoughts should be a reflection of where you are at in life. The more compassion that you're willing to offer yourself. This is a hard thing. I mean, I really struggled with this myself too, letting go of old ideas I had about myself. The more compassionate you're able to bring to wherever you're at in life, I think the better you're going to be able to fine tune your methods to documenting whatever it is that you're experiencing. That's really scary. It's been so scary this year. Letting go of these ideas I had about myself of being productive or organized or structured and it's funny. I mean, it was scary to let go of some of these ideas. But doing that has allowed me to have a lot more space, and feel just so much more open to new ideas and just be, I guess, view things with a different angle that there's sometimes it's just exactly what you need to just approach things a little bit differently. So yeah. I hope that all made sense. 5. Dealing With Distraction: I saw a really great question, I'd love to answer, Vitaly. Which is, don't you feel like documentation can take a lot of time and distract you from real life? I can give a really philosophical answer to this. Which I'm like battling with right now and then I'll give a more concrete answer. The first is that, what is real life? At the end of the day, we're always talking about this, and I'm not trying to make a joke, a parody of myself here, but we talked about distractions a lot. I talk about distraction a lot, but ultimately anything can be a distraction. In that case, what is real life like? What are we trying to escape and what are we trying to go towards? I think those are better questions. We're not escape. What am I trying to move away from and what am I trying to move towards? What I have found personally, and this again, is just a personal decision I've made for myself. Is that documentation is a really good use of my time. Like that's a big piece of what I want my real life to be about. Because people have, can have a very negative idea of nostalgia. I get it, I don't want to be stuck in the past, I don't want to be locked into what was or what could have been. That's not what this is about. I think it's, I'm interested in capturing and telling stories from my experiences and it has invisible effect of adding richness to how I see the world afterwards. It' like, I don't know if everybody here has been to a foreign country, I would imagine. Maybe an even better example is like going to another city. Let's say you've never been to a foreign country. Once you've been to the city, you can't not know what it was like to be in that city. Like you can't go back to only knowing what it was like to be in your home town. For me so that I don't lose a lot of these insights or experiences or feelings that I have in the, all these places. Because life is short and it's long, at the same time, so many things can happen. I feel like documenting these moments, if I don't do that, I lose a lot of it. Now I'm finding, I look back on something that happened four years ago, a city, let's say that I went to, I can relive some of those moments where I showed them publicly or not in a way that if I was present in capturing those moments is meaningful to me. For me, that's real life, or a big part of real life in this vehicle that is the human body. But I think it's an interesting question to ask yourself because I do talk a lot about distractions and I don't want it, I don't want to live a distracted life or I don't want to spend all my time in not presently. I want to live as presently as possible in other words, and figuring that out isn't always clear, so I'm not pretending to have the exact answer. All I'm saying is that at some level, some element of it is a personal decision that you make on what matters to you. 6. Q&A: I've just had gone through a day or for me in New York, I have a whole day ahead, what should I be looking out for? What should be my sensor that, oh, this is something that maybe bears documentation? Is it things that bring up an emotional response or how do you feel that out? One thing that I feel I'm sounding a little bit like a broken record on, but I think it's really important is that, oftentimes, it just requires a little nudge, a little like, you just need a little prompt. You need a little angle of some kind. Like I'm going to capture a moment from today, what is that angle? It's not just everything that I'm doing. You're not capturing 24 hours of your day. It's how do I feel today? Or what am I thinking about today? Or what did I run into today? What was the surprise that took me aback? What was the perspective shift? It can be anything, but literally any prompt, there is no wrong prompt. Any prompt can help spark that process and get the ball rolling, and the whole point is that leads to places that you don't even know. I see intuition in the chat box, yeah, but intuition, again, intuition can feel like a scary thing. Like I feel you can overthink that one even. What is my inner voice telling you right now? Sometimes, it's not clear. You just have to start somewhere. I hope that provides a little bit of clarity. Yeah. Again, something that I talk about in the class, but I'm also just always feel talking about is lowering the friction. How can you make this easier and simpler to get going? Does it take you a minute to pull out your camera and shoot? Can you turn that into five seconds? I have a camera right here, I can capture the moment. That took me, not even three seconds. If it is this really complicated, difficult thing that you're struggling with and you're also trying to develop the practice of building the habit of resorting to a camera or a sketch book or what have you, the weight of that friction can be too much so simplifying, simple. I like that. Maybe it's even, if one day you hope to use your DSLR or your film camera to capture these moments, start with your iPhone so you can get the rhythm. Yeah, absolutely. We have a bunch of questions about workflow. We'll start with the really scary one, file organization, but really, there's a question, have you ever lost documented media and how did you deal with it? This person just lost three years of photos last year when they thought it was backed up, which is, we've all been there and God, is that heartbreaking. That's awful. For whoever said that, I feel horribly for you. I'm very sorry. But you know what? Did sucks. That really sucks. If there's any way I can turn that into a positive, it is that maybe that loss can show you how important that was for you and now you have the entire rest of your life to continue capturing moments, but this time back them up. Have you ever had a similar? How have you dealt with that situation if you've been in it? Yeah, I have. I definitely have lost. I've been very careful to back up as much of my stuff as I can, but for the record, I used to work on a lot of film sets and there have been situations where we lose everything we shot the entire morning and it's just, oh my God. [LAUGHTER] In those cases, I was happy to be wherever I was a production assistant, I don't have any responsibility to bear, so I'm okay, but it's just awful. It's really awful. I lost when I was just starting to make videos. It had to be the second video ever that I wanted to make, I filmed an experience that I had. Then I took the SD card and put it in the SD card reader. The SD card reader was super faulty or something, and completely destroyed [LAUGHTER] the card and scratched all the metal reading points so I lost everything on that. Obviously, at the very beginning of my career, I'm just, okay, it's all over. I have nothing left to give. Obviously, that was not the case, but I get how awful that can feel. I don't have a perfect answer to offer you. I mentioned Google Photos for backing up all photos. There's, of course, data privacy issues that I'm not going to be gloss over. I'm doing it, but I also share my life on the Internet and I don't know what the full repercussions of that are. Don't use me as an example in every situation but yeah, this is an opportunity to start now. To start, you can make a video or anything, you can make on anything. It could be a drawing, it could be a photo, whatever, about how this you're starting fresh now with a clean slate. It's cool, actually. I don't know. I'm trying to turn this into a positive situation. I can understand how awful that must have felt. I like the idea of a clean slate. That is something at least. Hopefully, whether files have disappeared or not. At a certain point when you're doing something like this, you end up with so many, be it via photos or note books, or videos, how do you organize those things if you do so that you can go back and find what you're looking for later? Totally fair point. One point I just want to add on that though, is that scarcity, in a sense. It's just something to think about as you go about capturing your life in whatever way that you do. Scarcity does contribute in many ways to the value of something. Let's say, you take 10 photos on July 20th, 2021 or I guess, that was three days ago. Let's say, you took 10 photos versus 10,000 photos. Those 10 photos, it doesn't work linearly. Those 10 photos could have more meaning for you than all 10,000 of the other ones combined. That's something to think about and I think, as you hone in on what you care about or what you enjoy documenting, the process of organizing can actually counter-intuitively become easier because you're not just blindly capturing. I mean I have systems that work for me, but I wouldn't say, I'm the ultimate in that. I don't know. I guess, it depends on what it is that I'm organizing. If it comes to like with video, it's separated by month and year and within the month, I name the activity or the place that I was in and I place things there. I separate by camera and with photography, I organize everything in Lightroom. I feel maybe I included this in my class, but there's a great tutorial by Joe Alum, who's awesome. I'm going to see if I can link it in the chat. He walks through his entire import process and everything. I think, if you look up Lightroom Editing Tutorial, Joe Alum, you'll find it and that's fantastic for photo. But in terms of journaling and whatnot, I mentioned some of the basics of just date everything, please and have a space where everything can end up. Maybe you have a bucket of journals or a box or something where everything can end up. Because when it comes to journaling, I'm not as worried about having everything organized. I feel once I captured on paper, I'm less afraid of losing that idea. What matters is that I got it out and that I visualized it somehow and I might stumble upon it again unless I'm going through my journals later on or it might just resurface in some other form, further iteration in the future. I'm not super worried about that but I think one thing that's also important to mention is that when it comes to documenting, make sure this doesn't encroach in your workspace. Make sure wherever it is that these things end up. If it's messy or if you're very, very organized. Make sure that it's not just all over your desktop, for example, or that it's not completely clogging up your Google drive, or wherever it is that you do your work. Separating those two helps tremendously because I think then you can really get lost. I hope that answers that question. I can go more into specifics if there's more specific questions. My personal method on this hopefully, this provides a little bit more clarity. I feel like a time or a place is organized in my head once I've created something about it. Let's say the trip to Iceland, I still have a pending, I haven't done a story about that just yet. For me personally, I feel like once I have told the story about that place, I have effectively captured and organize my thoughts and memories and feelings of that place. I no longer worried about what exactly the video files end up if that makes sense. I hope that provides a little bit of clarity because I don't like going crazy organizing every last file forever because I would spend all my time doing that. That makes a lot of sense. Excuse my siren in the background. [LAUGHTER] No worries at all. Could you talk a little bit about your process when you are shooting film of going from negative to files, to using them in a video or posting. It's actually remarkably simple and if I can just once again reiterate how much easier this actually ends up being that I once thought, I would like to. That was a really messy sentence right there. The process for me is I go to a film shop. I have my film cameras, I'll grab them really quick. Love all the visuals. Those bookshelves are earning their heap. I have three film cameras. One of these costs more than like $150. I don't think I think this was like probably $200 with the lens. This is the Canon AE1. I've shared this before. It's also in the class. This is the Nikon L35 AF autofocus and everything. It helps with exposure, it makes it really, really simple. This one is the Olympics XA. The process for me is, I have one of these cameras. This one cost me $80 or something like that. I go to the film shop, I get a film role. I loaded up, there's tutorials on the Internet. I take the photos. You have 36 and a typical role for these. Then once it's done, remove the film from my camera, take it to the film shop, and they develop it for me. They send me the files digitally via WeTransfer, and they can also print them out for me for an extra cost, but that whole process allows me to just have this in a film. I don't need to worry about dark room. I would love to explore that in the future, but just from a practicality standpoint, let's say you're traveling or what have you. It makes it really easy. There are film shops all over the world still, thankfully. I feel like I answered the question. Fernandez as a disposable camera is great too. That's so true. Yes. Absolutely. You can't go wrong. There's no wrong answer. It could be a Polaroid, it could be anything. Whatever it is that you choose that feels important to you and valuable. Great. Go for it. Use that to capture your experiences. Love it. Have time for just a couple more questions. There are so many good ones, so we'll just have to make this will bring you back for another live. There's so much to dig into but a question here. Could you tell us about maybe the low points in your creative journey and what mindset shifts helped you move forward. This person is saying, I constantly find myself on a creative motivation roller coaster, overthinking ideas and giving up on them. I can absolutely talk on that. I just want to answer really fast though. A film shop that sends out digital where says TJ Maxx to my email. I give them my email, they will WeTransfer me the files. Then I basically download a zip file and then I open it up. Again, it's quite simple but if you're saying it feels like nowhere does that in my city, I don't know what city you're in. If you're in a small town, there might not be one, but any medium to large sized city for sure has a film shop. I got my last film rolls developed in Reykjavik, which is a town of 100,000 people. It's very small. To answer that great question. I don't know if it's helpful, but I would like to share that I still go through that roller coaster. I don't think that ever ends. I still find myself over complicating things or going in a direction that doesn't make sense, losing my way, if you will, and then finding my way again and then losing my way. It's a never ending process. I think the pursuit for simplicity is a good one to re-center your focus. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or stressed out or confused, or what have you. Triangles simpler, seriously. I think it's really helpful to, sometimes when you're really in your head, just take action in any way. You possibly can. If it's possible for you to go outside with your camera and just snap a few photos, even if it has nothing to do with the project that you're working on, Or what have you. That can be enough to spark something within you that can lead to the solution that can ultimately result in a successful project. That's the answer that I would give but again, I really want to repeat that it's a never-ending thing. Especially if you're always looking to evolve and grow as an artist or as a person. Whenever you find something that you're comfortable with, like you're not going to be able to stick with it. You're going to have to be on to the next thing. There's always going to be this negotiation between what works and what you know, what feels right. Then the unknown and testing things out and figuring it out if it makes sense or not. Wonderful. Just time for two final questions. The last, any final thoughts for students like what can we do today or this week? Any final thoughts for going forth to document with intention? That's a great question. I like that. I don't know. I was just thinking about this today. We we were always living in such a crazy time actually and we didn't realize it, or maybe you realize that, I don't know, but I didn't really realize it. I'm just realizing it more and more. There was a time, not that long ago where you could just go somewhere without any checks, any tests, anything and just be there. It's weird. It's hard for me to imagine that. I mentioned that because I'm just like, wow. I wonder where we go from here. If the world is going to continue like it is right now. If it's going to go back to four, if it's going to be this new thing. There's just so much opportunity to capture what's going on. We've never seen this before. This is a golden opportunity. All of the emotion, all the politics, all the perspectives, all the things people are saying on the Internet, all the things people are saying in real life. There's so much room there to tell stories, to capture moments, it all goes. There's no wrong answer. I don't know. I think just remembering wherever you can. I need these reminders from my friends and from other people in my life. Just to be curious, just go back to that baseline wherever possible we can feel stressful, it can feel scary, can feel exciting, feel good, you feel bad, but just be curious about all of it. That is something I'm trying to continue to do it because I'm realizing like, I can't plan out my future. I don't know how things are going to evolve. If I'm going to be able to stay here or go there or what have you. All of that. Everything is actually an opportunity for documentation, and for capturing something and making something of your experiences. I guess I would just leave it at that. I also, I don't know if I'll be ending this right now or because I was going to say, thank you to everybody for tuning in and listening to me babble for this last hour, I guess, it means a lot. I hope it felt like I answered your questions about being too abstract. I want this to feel concrete. It says concrete as literally picking something up and hitting the trigger. Those are my thoughts. I'll just leave it on that. [LAUGHTER] 7. Final Thoughts: The final note here, I would just say that the point here is not to get caught up on what is good and not good, being perfectionistic. I think that is a recipe for disaster and getting stuck in your own head. I think what matters the most is paying attention to your curiosities, following those impulses, hey man, I'm interested in that. What is that? Or where can that take me? And letting that lead you and pushing off the judgment for later and letting that be something that comes later on. Just enjoy the process and explore, what you cares about.