Inspiration is a Process

We all want to become better at this craft. So why is it that so many of us only take photos when we “feel inspired”? If you follow A Lesser Photographer then you may have already read this.

Inspiration doesn’t “strike.” Inspiration is scheduled.

I would add that inspiration is a process. Think about the times you are “struck” with inspiration. Is it really that something comes to you out of the blue? Maybe that happens sometimes, but more often than not isn’t it that you are already thinking in a creative mindset? You see/read/hear something that sticks in your mind and the creative juice is already flowing by the time that inspiration “strikes”. So why can’t that be intentional?

When I decide that I am only going to take photos when I “feel like it”, I don’t do much. The details of life, what it takes to get through a day, are not conducive to creativity (and neither is trolling dpreview to see what has been announced at Photokina).

So when I don’t “feel like it”, I have to make a concentrated effort to begin the process of becoming inspired. Looking at it like this, there is really no difference between inspiration and creative block.

Building Blocks

I often struggle to find confidence with photography. I am afraid that if I shoot something  similar to what someone else has shot that I have failed because I did not create something that has not been created before.

Or I feel like ‘I don’t have an eye for anything’ right now. I was encouraged the week with something I read by Zach Arias on his blog Ask Me Anything About Photography. It is all about focusing on the fundamentals; I took what he said and ran with it.

Photographing lines seems really basic but it is something that I need to do right now.

Connection

This week was a struggle for me to find any sort of photographic inspiration. Waiting until nearly the last minute, I finally forced myself out the door, falling back on “just shoot something”. It almost seems like the cyclist in the foreground is looking for a connection, maybe based on a common interest. But in reality, I am pretty sure she is just trying to figure out what I am pointing my camera at.

Focus

One thing I really like about my LX3 is the manual focusing. There is a “focus” button on top to do an auto-focus over-ride which can help make manual focusing faster. But what is even better is an on screen DoF scale. The focus range changes with aperture and focal length to make hyperfocal focusing quick and easy.