New beginning 4


I had finished 2020 exhausted. A certain weariness had set in and I had all the trouble in the world making photos in the streets of Saint-Denis. I know that the right attitude to have in this case is not to force things and not to force yourself to take pictures in order to take pictures. As I said in my previous blog. I don’t think there are quick fixes to find the urge.

Like all the beginnings of the year, I always have a certain apprehension because I know what work I have achieved  the previous year and it is with a little pressure that I start a new year. There are some photos from 2020 that I really like and I have absolutely no guarantee that I will be able to make such interesting photos this year. Year after year, I lead a competition that could not be healthier. A competition with myself. It’s quite strange to see his work evolve over the years. I had suggested to John Harper to do a retrospective in the form of a slideshow of the last 4 years by gathering all of his “Best Twelve”. A nice collection of 48 photos.

At the start of the year, the photos taken in 2020 are still very present in my mind. Which is quite normal because 2020 was just a few days ago … The comparison is painful at the beginning of the year because I have in front of me the work of an entire year that I compare to my first photos from 2021. Besides, to simplify things and get rid of this problem, I have deliberately put aside my photos from last year. I put them all on my backup HDD so that I could no longer access them. I recently took stock of the past year with a slideshow. It’s time to put aside what I achieved in 2020 and dive headfirst into 2021.

To start this year off right, I put away my Ricoh GR that I had used all December. We come back to the basics in my case: the Ricoh GRD4. When I’m in the hard, I’m quite conservative and I like to find myself with a camera with which I am in symbiosis. I don’t ask myself many questions when I’m in the street with the GRD4. Photographing with this camera is intuitive for me and since it is slower, my process in the street is different.

I don’t really like the resolutions we take at the start of the year because we never keep them. What I simply want is to rediscover the pleasure of taking pictures in the street. I leave the Keepers and Glory Shots to others. During this first week in 2021, I went for a walk in the streets, without forcing things. By observing more carefully. By paying attention to details and also by looking at the simple things. I decided to free myself from this pressure I was talking about a little earlier. To be less demanding of myself. The 2021 photos will be what they will be. No worse or better than 2020. They will just be different.

Ah yes I forgot! I wish you a happy new year 2021. It makes me weird because the last time we wished each other a happy new year at the end of 2019, we saw what it looked like for 2020 …

All photos were taken in 2021 with the Ricoh GRD4.

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4 thoughts on “New beginning

  • John Wilson

    Happy New Year, we know we don’t have to worry which photos u make or which camera, the end product will be the best you can make!

    • Jeff Chane-Mouye Post author

      I know that we should lower our expectations so as not to be disappointed by the result. But in the other hand, the best way to improve is also to have high expectations. That’s how I see things. What I should be aware and I already know that, is that street photography is about failure, frustration. Don’t take anything for granted. The journey is never over. It will be when I will knock on the Lord ‘s door. The later the better…

  • John Harper

    New Year’s resolutions never last long. Keep to the path you’re on, the results you get prove it’s the correct one to be on. Plenty of “keepers” here, that’s for sure…QED (Quod Erat Demostrandum).

    Im still trying to find those 48 Shots on my hard drive 😉
    Happy New Year Jeff!!

    • Jeff Chane-Mouye Post author

      I must stop complaining. Some people are experiencing lockdown again. I should be happy to be able to make photos on the streets. About these 48 shots. If I had to do it, I would reconsider the previous best twelve because my choice would be different concerning my work. But not changing anything would show how our vision has evolved through the years.
      Wish you all the best for your family John. Stay safe from the virus