by Amy Frazier
Republished with permission from Digital Photography Blogs
If you're like me, there are probably plenty of times when you've lacked motivation in your photography. Maybe you are too busy. Maybe you feel like you keep shooting the same thing over and over again. Maybe you can't help but compare yourself to all the amazing pro photographers out there and don't think your images stand up against them.
So what to do now? I'm here to help you work through that rut because I am, in fact, in one myself. And the thing that's keeping me going is to remember these five easy steps to shake off the photography blues and get myself back on my game.
1. Just keep shooting - don't be tempted to stop taking pictures just because you have lost your mojo. My biggest piece of advice I give anyone who asks me how to become better at photography: do it all the time. This advice applies to getting over a hump, too. Take pictures constantly. Join a group like 2008: A Year in Pictures or Project 365 on Flickr that will motivate you to shoot a photo every day. Or just commit to picking up your camera a few times each week and stick to it. You might not always like what you shoot, but when you shoot often you have much more to choose from. You're bound to like something!
2. Try a new perspective - One of the worst things for a photographer is boredom-same old, same old. Instead, trying shooting the same things just with a different perspective, like the tree in the photo above. I've gotten myself out of a couple ruts by shooting flowers in a new way or even just my daughter playing without including her head in the shot.
3. Remember what you love - try to remember back to why you first picked up the camera. For me, I really got serious about photography when my daughter was born. So when I get the photography blues and I'm totally lacking inspiration, I just pick up the camera and take some fun snapshots of my kids. I don't try to set up every shot, I just start shooting. And more often than not, I end up having fun with my camera and get inspired again because I'm shooting my favorite subject.
4. Revel in the bad - allow yourself to take some bad photos every once in awhile and don't beat yourself up about it. You can get so caught up in f-stops and white balance and everything else that goes into setting up a good photo, that sometimes it helps to scrap it all and turn the camera on Auto or Portrait mode and just shoot whatever. You don't ever have to show anyone these photos. They're mostly to get you to stop worrying so much about the technical side of things and to have fun. When I do this, I don't always get a lot of great images, but the ones I do end up with are still memories nonetheless. And I get a kick out of looking back at them later and remembering that every once in awhile I don't take myself so seriously.
5. Go out and find some inspiration - Join photo challenges and contests where someone else comes up with ideas of things for you to shoot (Digital Photography Blogs Flickr group has a new one each week). Browse through your favorited photos, your Flickr contacts' streams, or even some of your own images that you really like. Or pick up a book on any photographer you admire. What stands out to you about these photos? Chances are you'll find something that inspires you. Then take that inspiration, pick up your camera and get back out there!
Usually found changing diapers with one hand while shooting with her Nikon in the other, Amy Frazier shares tips on getting the best shots of your kids and explores the road to becoming a professional children's photographer. She can also be found at Flickr -- where she takes pictures every day -- and on her personal blog, Girl's Life.
Photos courtesy of and copyright by Amy Frazier.