Tonje Lilleås

Remember why you started

Remember why you started. I recently decided to start over with content creation, and my first step was to reflect on my past experiences. Through meditation I tried to figure out why it has become so important to me for others to like my photography. I’m still working on that, but one of the urges I had after meditating one of the first days since focusing on this question was that I really wanted to check out what Lizzie Pierce had been up to lately.

Remember why you started

If you don’t know whom Lizzie Pierce is, don’t worry. This isn‘t about her. It is however about something she has found important enough to make a neon light quote sign out of: “Remember why you started.”

And I think one of the main reasons I started caring so much about other’s opinions of my images was the fact that I actually forgot why I started photography.
To me photography is the perfect way to explore my surroundings. It’s a way for me to easily find a state of presence. It’s a way for me both to investigate things I’m curious about and to share my take on the world.

Curiosity, passion and search for community

When I first picked up a camera I was curious about what I would be able to do with it. But the reason I started photography in a more profound way was because of how picking up that camera made me feel.

When I started out it felt like anything could become an interesting photo, but even if I didn’t come home with a single image I never felt like time spent with a camera in hand was time wasted. I didn’t care about great conditions or a particularly exciting location. I just wanted to shoot.

Heck, I remember being excited about shooting at a graveyard midday in harsh sun. I even shared the images from that shoot. They weren’t any good, but the time I had spent shooting them I felt great.

And that’s the thing; I started sharing images not to get praise or likes. I think I started in search for a community of likeminded people that had that same amazing feeling when they had a camera in hand.

Remember why you started. I started out of curiosity, passion and search for community. And I think that has to be the core when I’m starting over as well.

Why did you start? Wether it’s your job or hobby or sports or whatever. Do you remember why you started?



  1. Reply

    Martin Cooper

    February 21, 2024

    I really resonate with your reflection on rediscovering the essence of photography. It’s crucial to remember why we started our creative journeys, especially when seeking external validation. Your journey back to the core essence of photography is inspiring. For me, I started writing because it allowed me to express myself in ways I couldn’t verbally. It became a form of catharsis and self-discovery. What about you? What initially drew you to your creative pursuit?

    • Reply

      Tonje Lilleås

      February 22, 2024

      Yes, it really is crucial! I found I needed a creative outlet because I work in a field that really don’t allow much creativity. I felt like a huge part of me needed to be reigned, and the restrictions made me feel incomplete in a sense. So I figured I needed a creative hobby to feel more whole. Turned out I was just right, and photography became a key ingredient in my life.


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