Transitioning To Houston

life-downtown-htownI must say it was an easy decision. A road trip from SF, leaving unemployment behind. A guaranteed full-time position teaching photography, benefits, pension. But how would relocating from San Francisco to Houston, Texas affect my eye,? My photography? My ability to make pictures? Actually, a little more than I thought. Moving from a beautiful coastal city known for wine country, weather and liberal ideals to another, mid west city known for mosquitoes, beer, oil, medicine and hurricanes would change me.

Born and raised in Southern California, the High Desert to be exact, Houston was no different. Actually it reminded me a lot of SoCal’s sprawling car culture. I no longer was required to take public transportation (BART) to work or walk through a thriving metro area as I did in SF. Now everything I did, everywhere I went was in the car. No photographing commuters. No more photographing the denizens of the streets.

I, along with my wife noticed a shift in my shooting patterns. No longer was I posting multiple times a day to my IG feed. I was finding myself pulling from my archive to fulfill my hunger to post and share. Kind of boring. There were times I would ride the light rail in Houston, making pictures as I went. But it just wasn’t the same.

It wasn’t until I began spending more time in Hermann Park (Houston’s Central Park) that I found my inspiration. No longer would i have to rely on the streets of SF. Now I had a park. A park with the same energy that Dianne Arbus found in NYCs Central Park.

I miss San Francisco with a deep passion. I wish I could go back. I can’t change that right. Nor do i want to. I now have a new life in a new city. One I actually like. As with any new experience, a promise to oneself to explore and break the boundaries and meet new people is required. I have made that promise. I continue to meet new people and explore new places. Houston, Texas is different from SF in many ways. The more I get to know it the more I love it. It will never fill the place in my heart that SF holds. But that’s the nature of an intimate relationship. SF holds a special place in my heart. One that no other city can fill. And that’s fine. But as with any relationship, one ends and another begins. I am looking forward to the excitement I will share with my new muse, H-town.

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