It happens to everyone. If you have photographed for a long time you find yourself in the occasional rut. A simple way out of that is to start (and finish) a photo project. Here are five ideas to get you started. If these don’t work for you, try to come up with some of your own.
1. Collect Backdrops
You never know when a cool pattern or background could be used as a texture or a digital backdrop in a composite.
Shoot colors, textures, patterns. Look for old, new, and in between. Use your imagination. Closeup lenses make this easier. Build your collection and whether or not you ever use them in a composite, you’ll at least have benefitted from training your eye to find this level of detail.
2. Shoot Reflective Surfaces
Whether it’s water on natural objects such as rocks or something like sunshine reflecting off glass windows or doors, reflections offer all sorts of visual stimulation and are very attractive to most human brains.
Experiment with reflections in both color and monochrome.
3. Go Prop Shopping
No matter what you shoot, props can liven up your photography. Portrait shooters for instance can change the entire look of a shoot with the right props. Whether it be parasols or feathered caps, you can make a real statement with props and it all starts with prop shopping. Props can help illustrate concepts. Think of some concepts you want to illustrate and then go to thrift stores, antique stores and estate sales and look for cool props to help tell the story.
4. Time of Day
Make the same photo – at the same place at different times of day. Light changes minute-by-minute. So the same photo is not possible if taken one minute before or after the one it seeks to replicate.
Light moves and makes changes. Subjects look different in different light. The color spectrum changes as does the light. This can be inspiring to even the most bored photographer.
Mix objects that don’t normally go together. Photograph an elderly lady holding a skate board. Photograph a basketball team standing in a swimming pool. Try looking at things in an inside out manner.
When you work with objects in an unexpected manner, you shake up your viewers and your own imagination. It’s a great way to jump start your photographic vision.
These are merely idea starters. Use them to come up with your own ideas. Get busy and get out of the doldrums.
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