It’s a malady as old as the ages themselves.  It’s a condition that many artists face, and while some master it, others spend lifetimes chasing it only to perish just short of the true goal.  So please bear with me today as I wax poetic on this topic, one that is just as much a part of me personally as it is part of a larger challenge that all artists face.  Such is the life of an artist, a photographer… one that is as vexing as it is fulfilling.

Sailing Ship - Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Sailing Ship – Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC, Canada –

Just the other day as I was out photographing a feature we will be sharing here with you shortly, one that we’re very excited about, I came across this scene on the shores of the ocean here in Victoria, BC on Vancouver Island in Canada.  I love sailing ships, and the old historic tall ships in particular.  There is an inherent romance in the way they traverse the oceans, bobbing and weaving across mile upon mile of solitude, with only a heading and some faith to fill their sails.  They are in an endless chase, always looking forward to the arrival, but reveling in the journey itself.

I saw the scene captured here as a metaphor for this condition.  It seems that this particular ship is always just a few feet away from that ultimate goal; the one where the perfect light comes together with the perfect subject to cast a scene that is almost magical to behold to those who seek it.  I find that as we go through the process of growing our practice here, these experiences are becoming more and more frequent.  I love the challenge of constantly learning, constantly trying to better my craft by finding new techniques, or new ways of doing things.  For me, I love this, and I truly hope that this experience continues until I am no longer active in the field, for it is the journey that’s important not the end goal.  This is all much like our common vernacular that states “it’s always in the last place you look”; this one may be self-evident inasmuch as once you find that which you seek, you no longer look for it.  In this way, the entire process almost becomes a never-ending adventure.  Just the way I like it…

Thanks for joining us today on this metaphorical quest.  We truly appreciate all our visitors and we encourage you to leave us any comments or thoughts you may have below.





  1. avatar Bev Oliver says:

    Beautifully stated, Toad and Mrs. Toad. I got quite caught up in your words; a lovely expression of the poetic soul, yearning, as always, for elusive perfection. Well done, indeed!

  2. avatar Lensscaper says:

    Well stated, Toad. All of us photographers are embarked on a visual journey through life. There is no discernible end-point to that journey – if there were then that would mark the end of our desire to develop our skills.

  3. avatar Lisa Gordon says:

    Such a wonderful analogy, and I think feelings shared by so many photographers.
    I truly, truly enjoyed this post.
    Thank you!
    Have a great weekend.

  4. avatar Edith Levy says:

    Excellent post Toad. Very well said and beautiful image.

  5. avatar Len Saltiel says:

    So well said Toad. It is interesting that you feel the same as me but your gift with words said it better than I ever could.

  6. avatar Jimi Jones says:

    I could not agree more, Toad. Well stated, as always.
    Here’s to hoping this journey of chasing the light continues for eternity. Long after we’ve triggered the shutter for the last time, others will just be beginning. 🙂

  7. great philosophy mr toad. the location you show us here is one of those places where my camera has a mind all its own: she tends to jump into my hands then, begging me to use her. awesome scene with the ship putting life into it.

  8. avatar Rick Louie says:

    So well said, Toad! I love getting out there and you hope for that magical scene. There are times when you don’t really feel like getting out there but you go through the processes anyway and boom something magical happens that you don’t expect. It’s all about the journey and that’s why I love photography. Learning or experiencing something new every time I go out.

  9. Great post toad, I have been in a slump here for a few weeks but am getting on track again, the Acadia trip next week with the boys should be icing on the cake, great images as always!

    • Thank you so much Mike, it’s always a huge highlight for me when you pop by to say hi here at The Hollow! Best wishes for your work, my friend, I will always be on the lookout for your latest posts! 🙂