You’ve photographed everything! From your dog’s sleeping habits to the trash on the street corner (no pun intended), but somehow you find yourself stuck in a photography rut, taking photos from the same angles and using old faithful techniques.
Do you need to put back the spark between the camera and you but don’t know where to start? Stop stressing - Here is a collection of 10 ‘date’ ideas for you and your camera to try out and reignite your passion for photography and help you develop a stronger creative eye.
1. Be Daring
Improving on anything involves getting out of your comfort zone! Find a subject that you are not comfortable taking photos of and go for it!
If you are used to shooting portraits, live a little, go out and shoot sceneries! All of a sudden you need to change your camera settings, there’s no one standing in front of you looking confused when they’re in an uncomfortable posing position. It’s just you, your camera and an unpredictable landscape.
Being daring will give you a deeper understanding of your camera and it may just deliver beautiful results!
2. Become more flexible!
If your muscles don’t ache after a photoshoot, you are not pushing yourself to your physical limit.
Balancing on a small rock in the middle of a river, holding onto your camera for dear life to get the perfect scenery shot - is worth getting a bit wet. If you have to climb into a tree while shooting wildlife to get a great angle from above - we say, why not?!
Try different angles with the same subjects - Bring a ladder to portrait sessions and take photos from above, not only is it flattering to your model but it will showcase your skill.
Explore and experiment with different camera angles, some you’ve never tried before. Be willing to jump out of your comfort zone, get down and dirty!
3. Visit Your Local Zoo
Animals are the best clients, they have no expectations and no demands! Plus you don’t have to pay an exquisite exotic animal to pose for you in fur!
Being relieved from the constant pressure and time constraint of photographing people can be a great boost in your confidence and a perfect opportunity to experiment.
When taking photos of animals behind fences and glass - try to challenge yourself by concealing the fact that they are at the Zoo.
4. Use a Tripod
Attaching your camera to a tripod can only mean one thing - Magic!
Everything slows down, you can not move the camera around as you wish. It’s only horizontal and vertical lines now! You are forced to think of your image and the position of everything in its borders!
Don’t believe us? Take 8 images hand held then immediately take 8 more while using a tripod. Look at the difference!
5. Carpe Diem
Take your camera everywhere with you! Having it wrapped around your neck will force you to look for moments and compositions to take photos of.
If your bag of lenses are too big and heavy - use your camera phone, it’s a great way to improve your creative eye!
6. Be A Student
Don’t ever have the mindset of “Oh, I know everything there is to know!” It’s an absolute death sentence to your creativity if you aren’t willing to change or adapt to more modern ways of photography. Consider the online Masterclass Film Making or a Free Online Photography Diploma by Shaw Foundation, our team has personally benefitted from the online diploma at our own pace.
Even if you’re at the top of your game always be open to learn from others (yes, even if they are much younger than you). Shadow an established photographer - offer help by holding their reflector at a shoot or running around for coffee.
7. Appreciate Art
Get inspired by looking at different artists’ work. When you see an artwork that speaks to you, study the artist. Heck, if you can - buy one of their pieces.
It’s extremely important to appreciate and admire the world of art, find your likes and dislikes by forming an opinion about a wide variety of works. Don’t forget to jot down interesting ideas and concepts you would want to try out.
8. Color Coordinate
Change your portfolio by picking a color and creating images predominantly around them.
Take pictures where this color primarily features - be creative in finding this color - it may be hiding somewhere you haven’t looked in a while!
Make the color more expressive by applying filters and playing around with photo editing.
9. Rediscover your camera’s settings
Is there a setting on your camera that you completely forgot about? One that you always skip over? Let’s rediscover that setting by dialing over to it and fully committing yourself until you are comfortable with it. Don’t be a commitment phobe!
Sticking to the automatic setting on your camera can blunt your creativity and photographic skill.
Hopefully you have your expensive camera’s hand manual somewhere in a drawer. We know it’s not the most fun thing to do, but you may learn something new and interesting about your camera that you didn’t know before. Once you get to grips with one setting, move on to the next.
10. Mingle With Other Photographers (Professional or Amateur)
Stop resorting to online networking and start having face to face interactions with like minded people. Find a local photography club and share your experiences with them.
Mingling with other photographers can give you a fresh outlook and at most inspire you to be better at your craft.
Follow These Tips
Following these 10 tips can unblock your inspiration and transform the way you’ve been taking photos.