2020 has been dominated by a global pandemic that has wreaked havoc across the globe leaving a trail of tragedy in its wake which looks poised to continue into 2021. It has driven governments to introduce measures and controls to try to keep us safe, but imposed restrictions have hidden risks that are seeing increased anxiety and mental stress as people worry about real world issues of health, employment and general wellbeing for ourselves and our loved ones today and in the future. So here we are at the end of 2020, winter is upon us and we again find ourselves once more locked down and restricted to taking local walks and exercise primarily for real issue of our health and sanity.
It’s been a year focusing on the wellbeing of loved ones, family, friends and colleagues at work, working together to develop good practices at home and work for staying safe and surviving this virus. For me that was the easy bit, however my mental stability has been my biggest challenge. Working for Thames Water, playing my little part, helping to keep millions of London’s households safely in supply has kept me busy, at times a little too busy, but I am thankful as that has removed one worry. The health of my family and close friends has also kept my mind occupied and thus far we are doing well. But this is not enough, I am a creative individual and photography is my art and I had much planned for the year.
2020 started well with an excellent, if short and a little too overcast and damp, a lovely weekend in the Lake District, followed by a couple of ‘Social Photo Meet-ups’ in London which where well received and positive. Then the pandemic broke, and most plans for the year shattered like a pane of glass. I have been lucky to have had the opportunity for some portrait and product shoots and meeting new people with the hope for future opportunities, but essentially the year has been a creative vacuum, and one that has generated some dark times. But the frequent exercise walks have helped, these close to home walks on familiar pathways and woodlands often seeming a little predictable and boring at times, but these regular ‘Sanity Walks’ provided opportunities to look for different elements to photograph, try different techniques and perspectives to help keep the infinite cycle of development moving, and whilst these are simple everyday objects, like a leaf, or a flower in a wall, or wide images in a local wood, they have helped to restore some form of creativity, and along with this restored some sanity, and that’s been no small feat!
I am very aware that the year has been practically and emotionally destructive for many people and the stresses generated unfathomable for me to compare and we have not yet felt the true impact of 2020 and may not do for some time yet. So as we prepare for a very different seasonal holiday and the start of a new year, I’m also embarking on some changes for 2021 once we are out of lockdown! 
So please have a safe and happy Christmas and look positively towards 2021.
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