Monday, January 28, 2013

28 / 365 - {things i've learned in the first 28 days}

This is all I could come up with today. It's a lame photo, but I've been feeling really uninspired the last few days.

But you know, it's ok. In a 365 project, there will always be days (sometimes weeks) of total lack of inspiration and motivation. I've learned (after failing to see through projects I've started like this in the past) that you just have to accept that some days you will have boring, badly composed, "blah" pictures, and that you have to just post them and move on.

So instead of talking about the blahness of my photo today, I'm going to talk about some things I've learned these first few weeks of 2013 about successfully engaging in this type of photography project:

*Disclaimer* I am a total amateur and these are just my personal thoughts and opinions!

1. Make yourself take pictures EVERY day. A pattern I've fallen into in the past, while attempting this kind of project, has been taking lots of photos on a good day, and using the back ups on days when I haven't had time to take a picture, or don't feel like anything I've taken is "share worthy." Doing this just starts the ball rolling towards quitting. This year I've intentionally taken a picture every day. Even if it's at 11:56pm at night, and is just a lousy picture of hot chocolate. Of course you have to just accept that there will be days when you're sick, or the weather is bad, or you're going through some sort of crisis and those days might produce "blah" photos, but the best thing to keep your motivation up is to keep with it even on days where you're not feeling it.

2. Take your camera EVERYWHERE. This one is still hard for me. Because my dslr is so huge, and I don't own a camera bag, I feel conspicuous carrying my camera into Target or the coffee shop. I also get embarrassed and afraid that strangers are going to think I'm weird for having a "photo shoot" in a public place. (I hate confrontation, even if it's the friendly "whatcha doin'?" kind.) I basically need to just get over it because anywhere you go outside of the confines of your home will provide tons of inspiration for photos.

3. The world looks different from a kid's height. I am constantly trying to find new angles and directions in which to photograph my subject. When I'm photographing my kids or their things, I try to get down at their level, instead of shooting from above them. It's amazing what a new perspective can do for the interest factor in a photo.

4. Even if it totally intimidates you, start shooting in manual mode. I've had my dslr since 2008 and I'm only just starting to feel comfortable shooting in manual, (and I feel weird even saying "comfortable" because there is still SO much I do not understand about my camera!) But for me, that's the great benefit of a 365 project - daily experimentation with the manual settings in various locations, lighting situations, etc. over a long period of time lead to a much more intuitive relationship with your camera. And the more control I have over all the individual settings, the happier I am with my photographs.

5. Lighten up in Photoshop. I love love love editing, but looking at past photos I realize I have a tendency to edit my pictures to death. I'm now aiming to focus on shooting photos that can stand alone with little, if any post processing, and when I do edit I try not to let the edits overpower the original photograph.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave a note! I'd love to hear from you!