Regaining Focus

What a crazy few months. I’ve got one of those jobs that’s feast or famine. We’re extremely busy, or extremely slow depending on the season. The minute I got back from Outdoor Retailer in August, our busy season at work went into full effect. There hasn’t been any time off for the last 6-8 weeks and it’s really starting to eat at me. No fishing, no photography, no video, no nothin’! It’s good we’re that busy, but by the time I get home from work, i’m usually so beat, I can’t get motivated to do much of anything except find my xbox controller and press the on button. I’ve tried hard to get up and do something creative. A few nights, I even set up in the backyard for some time lapse tests i’ve been putting off for a while.  After the set up, I could just kick back and let it do it’s thing. That’s the closest i’ve had to fun in a long time.


Things have been slowing down a little, and I began seeing little glimpses of free time becoming available the last week or so. So my whole overall outlook has slowly become a bit more positive. Tonight I finally had a chance. I still worked all day again, but got out early. Yeehaw. So after all the chauffeuring of kids and family around, a few honey do’s, and a quick bite to eat, I made a mad dash to the house to grab my camera gear and get somewhere…anywhere…and fast.

My destination would be San Angelo State Park, which is a pretty easy drive from my house. It’s an awesome place with miles and miles of hiking, equestrian, and mountain bike trails. It also has a huge lake that, depending on drought conditions, can be an excellent place to yak and fish.

But fishing wasn’t on my mind. I wanted to do something that might help my creative juices start to regain a little momentum. I got there just a few minutes before sunset and drove around to see if anything struck my fancy. It didn’t take long before I started to get that ol’ feeling I love so much.

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Knowing it would be dark quickly after arrival, I had packed in the tripod so I wouldn’t have to rush around fighting for light.

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The photo above pretty much describes most of West Texas. As the old saying goes…”everything around here either sticks, stinks, or stings”. But at least the sunsets are beautiful.

I was still a little pressed for time because of a few other obligations. So as it became darker and darker, I decided to drive down towards the water and look around before I left.

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It was rare to have a windless night, and I tried to take full advantage of it. Of course, if I decided to fish, i’m sure it would have picked up to 15mph, and if the kayak was involved, you can bet on 20-30mph winds. So I tried not to even think of fishing so the wind would remain calm. 🙂

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It was quiet, and very peaceful. Away from all the crowds, and all the madness in town. Photography and video have the same effects as yak fishing does for me. I forget everything and just have fun. Although, I did have a funny thought while I was setting up the tripod in the dark for a shot.  Here I am, on a Saturday night. Alone and cruising around a state park. What a party animal I am! lol

Overall…an awesome night. I look forward to the next little break, where I can stop all the worries, and focus on what I love.




Scott Gartman

Scott Gartman

Scott Gartman is a photographer and filmmaker. He is also an avid fisherman, kayaker, backpacker, and overall outdoorsman. His accolades are too many to list, as with the many streets and towns named after him. He's a legend in his own mind. Check out his home page at

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