Learn Digital Photography – 7 Steps to Jump Start Your Creativity
All of us want help in getting our creativity going in order to shoot great photos. How do you get more creative? There is only one way and that is to take photos. Lots of photos. But, the problem most people have is ideas. Here are some steps guaranteed to get you more creative.
Have you ever picked up your camera and thought what do I do to get my photography to another level? What can I shoot that will help me to become more creative and help my images to get that WOW factor. Most of us have reached this point of stagnation in our photography. So let’s look at some easy steps that are guaranteed to lift your photography to a new level.
1. A photo a day
Taking a photo every day for 365 days gets you into the habit of picking up your camera even when you don’t feel like it and taking just one shot. You can shoot anything or you can choose a location, theme or variations of a single subject.
The choice is yours. Key to this is taking your camera and shooting an image a day.
2. A photo walk
Do this at least once a week. Take your camera and just go for a stroll through your neighbourhood, a park or a local fishing harbour and just shoot images. This is like street photography where you go out and shoot anyone and everything. You want to get out of your home and immediate environment and increase the variety in your images. This will boost your confidence and increase your creativity. Key to this is getting out and finding different subjects.
3. The 100 Shots Challenge
Take a single item or subject and shoot it one hundreds times. You heard correctly. Find a hundred different ways to shoot it. Explore the effects of light and shadow at different times of the day. Change your ISO and your white balance. Experiment with different angles, viewpoints and focal points. Focus at different points while changing your aperture to alter the depth of field. Change the angle of the camera in between landscape and portrait. Be creative. Now you might only be able to think of 57 or 78 or 92 shots, that’s okay. You will find that there are angles that you would never have thought if you were only taking half a dozen images. Key here is to experiment.
4. The Alphabet Challenge
This may seem easy but you may find it a big challenge. Find twenty six different subjects each beginning with a different letter of the alphabet. There are variations of this task like choosing a subject that looks like the letter A or Z. It can also be representational. If you can’t find something that begins with X then choose something represents a quality. For example Z. Using the word zero you can find a park that is empty or a stadium where seats are empty. Key here is to think.
5. Treasure hunting
This is great when there are a group of like-minded photographers who want to have some fun. Come up with a list of items, concepts or ideas and go out and find them. The fun part about this is that members of the group will come up with totally different shots of the same concept.
6. Shoot a theme
This is one of my most fun-filled activities. Themes can really help your creativity. Choose a colour, shape or even an item of clothing. Shoot as many as possible or set yourself a time limit. I love shooting colour. Key here is to look for unique ideas or regular subjects shot from new angles or viewpoints. Let your imagination go wild.
7. Mono madness
I am usually opposed to using the monochrome or black and white feature of a camera. This is because a great image shot in black and white can never be changed back to colour. Colour can always be changed to monochrome post-production on your PC or Mac. But for this exercise shoot in black and white for a day. You’ll be surprised how different the world looks in black and white. Learning to see in black and white is an art and you’ll soon learn what colour combinations look great in black and white.
Creativity is not something we are born with. It needs to be developed. Many highly creative people have just learned it much earlier than the rest of us. Try these steps or perhaps just one or two to start off with and jump start your creativity. It’s fun and it’s rewarding. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Happy shooting!
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