In my more cynical moments, I am annoyed that I spend time sitting in front of a computer looking at pictures and playing with software. Who will see them? Does anyone care? Even writing these words seems to be a bit of a waste of time.
Years ago, in my younger days, I aspired to be an artist. The need to earn my keep held me back, but also fostered the question of what is the value of art? Value implies something which can have a monetary amount attached to it, but on a deeper level it also means merit, worth, esteem and often ethics, principles, standards. My conclusion was that if it had value to me, then it was art. No more angst over it, and a very simple answer.
Still, life intervenes. Things need to be done such as working, taking care of a house, paying bills. People, too, need to be nurtured; friendships and family relationships are inherently important. Physical, mental, and spiritual health need attention. All of these take away from time “doing” or “making” art. However, there is also the art of living, which is all-encompassing.
LIttle talks with myself in moments of why? are very important. I expect most of us have these dialogs. Our inner voices need to be heard, and sometimes the only one who can provide an answer is the voice within, from whatever it is derived. Perspective helps; hindsight aids.
So, to answer my own question: The value of the time I spend developing pictures is the value I place on it. When it pales in value, my focus needs to change to something more satisfying. Yes, life’s little chores need attending, but they are part of daily rhythms. Questions like this may also allude to dissatisfaction with solitary activities, or one kind of activity, or sitting rather than being outdoors hiking or gardening or seeing new things or meeting up with friends and family.
Regroup, rethink, and move on!