Sometimes you don’t see the forest for the trees. Or, you would like to do a certain thing, but don’t quite know how to approach it. Or, you feel that everything that appears before your photo lens is simply inappropriate and not worth photographing.
There are many options to sharpen your eye for subjects for your photography or to simply escape the photography lethargy. No matter whether you use a DSLR or one of those small, compact cameras, or whether you take photos with a cell phone or own a lightweight system camera, you can download photos to a computer and can upload them again just as fast to the Internet, as long as you have a digital camera available. There are no end of photo games or photo challenges online. On Instagram, on Flickr, and on many blogs, hobby photographers are asked to take part in one of these link parties.
The reason is very simple: When many people do something together, it creates a community – a community of like-minded folk. This is not only fun, it also prompts a person to look at other people’s pictures and in turn learn from them.
I have actually participated in a few of these photography challenges, e.g. via Instagram at FatMumSlim “a photo a day”, via blog at LuziaPimpinella “Beauty is where you find it“, via Flickr I have occasionally joined others in celebrating “Bench Monday” , and I myself have also started a photo challenge for my readers and myself on my own blog. The topic of “color me happy” was to photograph a subject in a particular color each month.
Naturally, you could look through your archive and find a purple-colored photo subject, but you could also go through your own home with your camera and purposefully look for a purple subject. On this occasion, e.g. I spotted my purple Chucks, which I immediately placed on the garden lawn and photographed.
If you don’t feel like public games, aren’t the author of a blog, or simply don’t enjoy participating in link parties of this type, you can still choose your own weekly or monthly topic and try to implement it with your photography. How about these topics:
- Take a photo of clouds
- Try creating macro photography
- Photograph flowers and foliage,
- Photograph the Seasons
- Look for black and white motives
- Look for reflections
- Photograph eyes, hands, shoes
- Capture the sunset
- Take a picture of something nostalgic, (an old game, book, or toy)
- Specific colors – something green, something yellow, something red, something brown…
There are many things one could photograph. Things which are just under our nose day by day, but we don’t recognize that they could be the subject of a picture. When we decide on a topic and start looking purposefully for certain subjects, we might find things that we simply overlooked beforehand. As I already described in my post “Looking for Signs in the City“, when I drive to the city I often decide to look out for certain photography subjects, for example, I might keep an eye out only for bicycles, doors, or windows.
If you set yourself a challenge, it will sharpen your eye and also force you to look in a direction other than just straight ahead. If we want to photograph clouds, we have to look up. And maybe in doing so, we will find a flag on a roof which is also worth capturing in a photo, or a tree with lots of cheery blossoms which we would have otherwise simply passed by.
Bine has been blogging since 2007 at “was eigenes”. The topics of her blogs are a colorful mixture of things she has experienced or created, of culinary delights, and a dash of something personal. Photography plays a big part in this.