March 17, 2011

Photo Assignments

Copyright Scott Bourne 2000 - All Rights Reserved

No doubt about it – one way to improve your photography is to give yourself assignments. With that in mind, I’ve come up with a few ideas to get you started. If you want to show off your work join our free Flickr group and post your images at

There is no contest or prize here other than you’ll improve. If these ideas don’t get your motor running, use them as a way to ignite your own ideas. Give yourself an assignment – a deadline – and judge the results. The more of this you do the better you will get.

Assignment #1:

Find a common object and make 12 distinct photos of it. Change the angle, light, lens, etc. Shoot it several ways. See if any visual themes evolve from this exercise.

Assignment #2:

Photograph signs within 10 miles of your home. These can be old or new signs of any type. Build a folder full of these signs and then repeat the exercise yearly to see how the commercial landscape around your home changes over time.

Assignment #3:

Photograph strangers. This will be the hardest one for some of you. Explain that you are making images for your own use and education and ask permission of at least one stranger this week to make their portrait. Give them a print in return. This will improve both your photographic and people skills.

Do you have other ideas? Go for it. The important thing to remember is that the assignment itself isn’t as important as the doing of it.

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Join the conversation! 3 Comments

  1. […] photos of signs within a few miles of our Apartment.  This came up after reading an article on Scott Bourne’s Blog.  In his entry he listed three different ideas of photo assignments and I decided to go with the […]

  2. […] Scott Bourne at Photofocus also praised the importance of giving yourself assignments in this post. […]

  3. […] Scott Bourne at Photofocus also praised the importance of giving yourself assignments in this post. […]

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About scottbourne

Founder of Retired professional photographer. Now I just play with my camera.


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