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I don't know about you, but there are times when I look at my photos and think, "UGH."
It's not that they're necessarily bad photos - they just aren't all that creative sometimes.
So the question is, how does one make more creative photos?
That's a loaded question, especially if you're a beginner photographer just learning your way.
Nevertheless, I sat down and thought of a few simple tricks you and I can use to create better photos, no matter how much experience you have in photography.
Let's get started!
Shoot Every Single Day
Yeah, we all have busy lives and it's hard to find time to go out and shoot on a daily basis.
However, if you really want to take more creative and innovative photos, taking photos each day is one of the best ways to further your talents.
Think about it...
The best athletes practice every day. The best pianists practice every day. The best comedians practice every day.
You see where I'm going here...
The key is to make it a casual experience, not something that's stressful or time-consuming.
For example, I take a photo of my son every day before school. I take it with my phone to make it easier.
What I focus on is my technique - the way I compose the shot and the manner in which I use lighting. I ask him to pose, stand still, and be active.
The point here is that I challenge myself to learn how to take photos at different times of day, under different conditions, and with different types of subjects so I can develop my creative eye and perfect my photography technique.
And guess what? It works, and it only requires about 5-10 minutes a day.
What's not to like about that?
When you're not feeling all that creative, what better resource to turn to than another photographer?
With digital photography, there are endless opportunities to collaborate with others near and far.
Think about it - you can take a photo and have someone else edit it in their style.
Conversely, you can handle editing someone else's photo.
The point is that sometimes all it takes to ignite a spark of creativity is to work with someone that's in a good creative space.
That's not to mention the fact that simply looking at other people's work can get you headed in a more creative direction.
So, hit up a friend in town or an acquaintance on Instagram and see what you can do when you put your heads together.
And while you're at it, have a look at some inspiring photos to get your creative juices flowing again.
Try Something New
Nothing gets you out of a creative rut like trying something new...
If you usually photograph landscapes and simply find yourself not knowing how to approach it in a unique way, take a break and give portraits a try.
Similarly, if you've shot nothing but wildlife photos recently, head to the city and try street photography for an afternoon.
I find that when I switch up my routine that I not only look at things differently - notice new ways to frame shots or utilize light - but I also find a reinvigorated interest in photography as well.
For example, I'm a big fan of seascapes, so most of my landscapes are taken at the beach.
But whenever I find that my photos are a bit on the boring side, I take a 180-degree turn and spend some time in urban environments, photographing parks, plants, and even decaying buildings, graffiti, and people on the street.
When I come back to landscapes, I find that my creativity has been rejuvenated and that I have increased passion for photography once again.
Try Different Gear
If you want to challenge yourself creatively, perhaps one of the easiest things to do is try different gear.
Now, I realize that not everyone has access to a cupboard full of different cameras and lenses...
But if you typically shoot with a crop sensor DSLR with a 18-55mm kit lens, buy an inexpensive prime lens like a 50mm and see how that change pushes your creative boundaries.
See the differences between shooting with a kit lens and a prime lens in the video above by Beboom.
Another thought is to rent different gear. Try out a full frame camera. Get a telephoto lens for a few days.
The point is that the manner in which you approach taking photos with your typical gear setup is comfortable, and that comfort can easily turn into apathy.
Simply shooting with a different focal length lens will force you to look at scenes in a completely different way, and that's a good thing if you're trying to find your creativity again!
As frustrating as it can be when you lose your creative way, the good news is that there's no lack of things you can do to try to regain your unique take on this art form.
Sometimes you just need a break from the norm to try something new.
Other times a quick switch of lenses or using a different kind of camera will do the trick.
Yet other times you need to reach out to other photographers to find inspiration or just get into the habit of shooting photos each and every day.
No matter which method you use, be sure to focus on the end-game - a greater understanding of techniques and principles that will help you find your unique photography voice.
For more details about developing your creative eye, check out the video above by AdoramaTV.