It’s been a really long couple of years, hasn’t it? Where I live in Australia, we are under a constant lockdown threat. We never know when and where one will hit.
I am in lockdown right now. I cannot leave my house without a permit, apart from essential shopping, medical needs and exercise. So leaving the house for a hoot is a no-no. Having ANYONE visit my house or studio is a no-no.
So how do you stay enthusiastic and motivated? Well, here are five ways to reignite your enthusiasm for photography.
Mark out some me time
I regularly tell all my students, that they need some quality me time. Time away from distractions and worries. Time to sit down and plan, or shoot, or edit or even learn something new. Even if it is just one hour a week, make it known that is YOUR hour. Sometimes just going for a walk with your camera can clear your head and allow you time to practice.
Always carry your camera
Even if it is just the camera on your cell phone (which are pretty amazing these days), always carry a camera. If you are going on a day trip, take the camera. Are you taking the kids to the park? Take the camera. Just sitting on the back deck watching the kids or dogs, or nature? Yes, take the camera.
OK, maybe not at the mall, while grocery shopping or banking … but everywhere else! You just never know what will happen next.
Learn something new
Try a genre you normally don’t shoot. Get out of your comfort zone. Especially professional photographers. There is something liberating about shooting outside your chosen genre. You don’t have to be “The Master” — you can be the student. Take an online class or tutorial.
If budgets allow to buy a new piece of equipment, that is always fun and exciting to learn. Do a local class in something other than photography, but could help your creativity. A sewing or craft class. A painting class. Life drawing. There’s so many options to learn something new. Can’t leave the house, like me? Go online … everything is online.
This is a big one for me. Sure, I write here for Photofocus, but I also have my own blogs and my own Facebook page for my students. I have classes I write for and finally, I have my own journal. I keep my thoughts and wishes and fears.
A journal is good for gathering your thoughts and feelings and in such a weird time that the world is in, it’s important to look inward to our own mental health. Sometimes it is difficult to help others when we need to sometimes look after ourselves first. It’s not selfish to look after ourselves first.
When things are feeling all doom and gloom, and your enthusiasm is wavering, remember WHY you got into photography to begin with. I am sure it was for the fun of it, right? Carve out time to enjoy it again. Or if you are a professional photographer, for the joy it also brings others.
Remember the joy you once had picking up your camera. Try to recapture THAT spirit. Free from business or life worries, be present in the moment with your camera. If that isn’t working, don’t force it. Put the camera down and pick up a good book, watch a funny movie or simply play with your kids or animals. Do something that brings a smile to your face. Just feeling in a better mood will improve your enthusiasm for just about anything.
So don’t forget to try any or all of these five ways to reignite your enthusiasm for photography. Have any other suggestions? Let me know in the comments!