Monday Motivation: You’re Never Too Old…


Always See the World Through Youthful Eyes

“You’re never too old to experience youthful imagination and wonder.” – Michael Stagg

Yes, today’s quote is something I’ve had in my head all of this past week. Ever notice how, no matter what’s going on, a child seems to remain ever optimistic and hopeful? Some of us, as we get older, tend to let go of that ability to believe in the abundance of the Universe and its willingness to supply us with our every desire. Perhaps it is because we are conditioned to “grow up” and live in “reality” instead of so-called pipe dreaming.

My own experiences come to mind, especially when it comes to photographer. I was in grammar school when I first learned about the wonders of camera and lens and although I am just now able to pursue that dream I’ve always held on to it regardless of what people thought. So I submit to you that if photography (or painting, or racing or any other pursuit) is something you’ve always wanted to do then run, don’t walk to the nearest camera or electronics shop – our your Smartphone, it doesn’t matter – and pick up a camera and start shooting! I can all but guarantee that you’ll reignite the passion you felt just like I was able to. 🙂


Monday Motivation: Life is a Series of Experiences…


“Battlestar Galactica” Poster by Mika Ruottinen

“Life is a series of experiences, each one of which makes us bigger…for the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grief’s we endure help us in our marching onward.” – Henry Ford

Short and sweet (because I’ve been up all night working on projects and watching Battlestar Galactica…Mostly watching Battlestar Galactica), what we consider mistakes are, in reality, our greatest teachers. As a budding photographer I admit to making plenty but I do not allow those mistakes to hinder me or deter me from pursuing my passion. On the contrary, when I make photos and the results are not what I expected I don’t give up, I don’t blame others and and I don’t blame my equipment. I try to, as objectively as possible, look at what I’ve done and look for reasons why I didn’t get the results I expected. Sometimes it’s a simple matter of adjusting aperture or shutter speed, other times I might need to pay better attention to lighting. Whatever the case may be, I sit, I study and then I go out and try it again. OK, I say I was going to be brief but the point is, in life or photography, we go through things. We can either learn from them or be doomed to repeat them… Kind of like the story of Battlestar Galactica, huh?! So say we all! OOPS! There goes my inner Adama again! 😉

Monday Motivation: The Purpose of Life…



” The purpose of LIFE is to give life PURPOSE.” – Miyamoto Musashi, The Book of Five Rings

I’ve read and reread this quote maybe a thousand times or more and the meaning is never lost on me. When pondering what we should do with our lives we must find something, anything, that allows us to feel as though we are making a difference in some way. An actor may feel that as long as they can inspire others through the roles they take on then that provides them with a sense of fulfillment. Likewise, police officer may have been drawn to that role by a desire to make, at the neighborhood in which they serve, a better place.

As a photographer, what do you aspire to? Why do you pick up a camera every day? If it for fame? Money? Is it to one day achieve status and recognition among your peers? For me, learning photography has been, and continues to be a journey in which I’m learning much more than how to capture a moment in time. Through photography, I’ve been given an opportunity to learn things about myself and others that I might not ever have discovered otherwise.

Sure, I like to take nice pictures but that is only a by product of the experience. Connecting with people, capturing and helping them preserve life’s little moments…that’s where it’s at! That’s why I love photography and that’s why I’m proud to call myself a photographer. Even if by some chance I discover that photography isn’t my calling I can still cherish the journey and all the treasures I’ve found along the way.


Monday Motivation Part II: Sometimes…


© Michael Stagg Photography – All Rights Reserved

Life isn’t always a bed of roses they say. To put it another way, we can’t always have joyful moments. Sometimes it can feel like the people, and seemingly the places and things, around us conspire to hold us back. What we must do when things aren’t going our way is dig deep and find the strength to forge ahead – in life, in our quest to become better photographers and to become better people in general. We must become our own cheerleader. We must give ourselves permission to excel!