HIATUS - Mental Illness in the Creative Mind

Hello, everyone!

I apologize that it has been awhile since I last posted here (Or pretty much anywhere under my Friese Frame Photography name). I've been having a tough time lately, so I thought writing about it might help a bit.

Since a young age I have struggled with anxiety and depression. The depression didn't really start until I was a teen, but I've always been a bit of shy and reserved person. Drawing was my way of expressing myself and help manage my anxiety. I was decent at drawing and even went to college for art before having a really bad serious of panic attacks and depressive behavior that forced me to quit school.

It's difficult to explain but my anxiety and depression just washed over me and completely engulfed me. It felt like I was drowning and I couldn't breathe. I couldn't focus on anything, not even my art that had helped me cope in the past. I kind of gave up.

When I had recovered a bit, I decided to try my hand at photography at a new school. I instantly fell in love with it and found my creative side rejuvenated. I gained enough self-confidence back to be able to work with new people and take lots of awesome pictures! I was on a roll.

So what happened?

Eventually I felt comfortable enough to take on an engagement photo session. I did it for free in order to build my portfolio and I thought everything went great until I got home and started editing the photos.

I hit a mental block. It's difficult to explain (and I don't quite understand it myself) but I would do things like open Lightroom and immediately get anxious and quit the program. I delayed editing the photos for so long the couple got (rightfully so) mad at me and left a very mean comment on my photography page which basically said I was a flake, a fraud, a waste of time. It hurt me a lot and cause my mind to hit the panic button and I deleted the original Friese Frame Photography page and everything that had to do with it.

It was really hard. I knew I had messed up but I didn't know WHY my brain wouldn't let me edit the images or why I would get so anxious trying to do something I'd done hundreds of times in the past.

This was the reason I was really hesitant to go back to the Friese Frame Photography name.

I wanted a fresh start, though.

So I tried again. I commissioned a friend to make me a new logo and I took some pictures of cosplayers and at the zoo but I've come face-to-face with that wall again. That anxious feeling that bubbles up in my gut when I look at my camera and I am constantly filled with thoughts that I am not good enough, will never be good enough, shouldn't even bother...

This is the dilemma I'm facing right now. I really want the self confidence back to ask people to model for me again! I want to be able to make cool images with friends but I'm just so scared I'll mess up again. Failure is my biggest fear and I let it overwhelm me to a point where I'm frozen by it.

I promise I'll be back eventually but right now I just need some time to find my passion again and not be scared of the thing I once loved. Thanks for sticking with me.

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