Turn on the Faucet…

“Start writing… no matter what.  The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on”
– Louis  L’Amour

While I can’t speak for others, I think many would agree that the first pages of any story, like the first steps in any journey, are often the hardest. Writing over 100 books and 400 short stories, Louis L’amour was one of the most prolific and successful writers of his time. As a kid, his books transported me to the ‘Old West’. A place where grit and morals determined a man’s future. When I came across this quote I found it to be quite intriguing, because although he is talking about writing here, what he says is just as true for anything we choose to undertake in life. When we are just starting something, no matter the endeavour, it can feel like we are setting out to conquer Everest. Sometimes, if we are lucky, we have sherpa guides on our journeys, while at other times we are on our own. Regardless though, each journey begins in those first few steps….just as any piece of writing begins in those first few words and any creative project begins in those first few moments of inspiration and action.


A Caribbean kestrel fans her tail on St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands

For those of you who may be reading this and may not know me, I suppose I should give you a little bit of background and context about myself and about what this blog is. My wife and I are both educators by trade and over a decade ago we packed up our belongings and adopted the gypsy lifestyle of international education. In this time we have been lucky enough to explore the world through postings in Norway, the US Virgin Islands and now southern peninsular Malaysia, just across the border from Singapore. While we have missed home (the US Upper Midwest) we have also been lucky enough as a family to experience some of the vast kaleidoscope of cultures that make up this world.

A couple of years ago brought the news of the impending birth of our second child and provided the impetus for me to revive a passion for photography that had first gripped me in the days of 35mm film. This photographic revival of sorts has also transitioned into cinematic endeavors. Thankfully the internet contains a wealth of information and this ‘old dog’ was able to learn a few new tricks…although there is still plenty of room to grow.


A Malaysian fisherman throws his cast net near Johor Bahru

This last couple of years though has certainly brought a number of steps in this journey. I have had the opportunity to experiment with a variety of photographic and cinematic genres and to refine my focus to predominantly Wildlife  & Sports on one side and Culture, Street and Travel images on the other. This has allowed me to combine my background in anthropology and art with a love for the outdoors and a desire to document this amazing world around us.

As the journey moves forward I hope to use this blog to highlight the photographic and documentary experiences I have been fortunate enough to have and as a space for reviews and reflections on equipment and technique. While I am far from a master, if others can benefit or learn from my experiences and mistakes thus far, all the better. I  am very grateful for the wealth of information and feedback others on the internet and in person have given me.


The focus is on the stroke

In our house we have a wooden plaque that goes with us wherever we make our home. On it is inscribed a quote from Anthony Brandt that reads “Other things may change us, but we start and end with family.” Without a doubt this has become the “unofficial” slogan of our household. While my photographic ‘journey’ makes up part of the “other things” in the middle, I will be always grateful for my family on either end who put up with me always brining a camera along and getting lost taking photos.

It is my hope that if you are reading this you will join me on this journey. Your feedback and thoughts are always welcome and appreciated. Please have a look through my portfolio and contact me if you have any ideas or questions. We are all taking this trip together.  Remember, if you don’t turn the faucet on, the water will not flow.  Get out and start creating, start writing, start traveling and start experiencing this marvelous world around us.

– Scott M. Williams

Lake Ashi, Hokone Prefecture Japan

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