Living a Passionate Lifestyle: Brooke Shaden

Brooke Shaden is a Fine Art Photographer who resides in of Los Angeles, CA.  Brooke has become one of my favorite photographers - but not just for her photographing skills, but for the way she encourages and inspires other photographers.

She has an amazing body of work and also a huge following though-out the world.  I encourage you to visit Brooke's site at

Brooke has a Promoting Passion campaign.  Her philosophy is that Promoting Passion is all about encouraging others to live passionate lifestyles.  I was so inspired by one her recent post, that I decided to repost it here on my blog.  I hope that it encourages and inspires you too.  

As a visual artist, visual flow is incredibly important to creating art that is meaningful and that you love. It does not always come about quickly, but is usually within everyone whether it has been confronted or not. If I were to ask you to create something based solely on what you love, what would you do? If I asked you what you like to daydream about most, or what your favorite color is, or where your most precious location is…what would you say?

When we are honest with ourselves and, consequently, with how we portray our craft, we are much more likely to enter visual flow. To understand who we are, why we are, and how to hone in on those things is to begin to understand your visual flow. It is different for everyone, but ultimately results in creating in a more personally fulfilling way.

I think that it is important for an artist to love what they do, and I use the term “artist” very loosely. I do not identify an artist as someone who makes money from their art, but instead someone who sees what they do as a craft. Being a mother can be an art; being a painter can be an art; being a skydiver can be an art. All of these could also have nothing to do with art, depending on your relationship with it.

Finding your visual flow has nothing to do with how other people judge your art, or even how you judge it compared to others.

This is your bubble of creativity, and it refers to genuine happiness while in the creation process. The more you love the process of creating, the more respect you will have for the finished product.

If you are creating solely for the pride of whatever results, the process is diminished.

I love everything that I create, especially while I am creating it. I enter into my personal workflow with reverence and happiness, knowing that what might result could be the greatest thing I have ever created or it could be the worst; this is of no consequence. The more I love the process, the more I love the result. I love everything that I create because of this. Make no mistake, however, in thinking that I always love what I do; quite the contrary. Years down the line I look back at my works and cringe, yet do so with no less respect for the image and process.

The love and excitement of a new piece of art might fade, but the respect and love for the act of creating never does.

One can begin to enter into visual flow by learning more about the creation process. Question how you create vs. how you want to create. They may be two very different things. Think about what you would create with no constraints, and then understand that those constraints may only be temporary, or may not exist at all.

Visual flow is not about conquering the world with your art, it is about conquering your own little world with your art.

"See the process, understand the process, love the process. It is inside us all."


All photos by:  Brooke Shaden

Post by:  Brooke Shaden