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Photo Ideas, Projects and Practice
-> A Guide to Proactive Photo Practice Sessions
by Noella Ballenger
Categories: Photography Tips, How-tos and Practice, Photo Self-assignments, Photo Exercises
In my last featured article, I used theme photography to illustrate how to set up practice sessions that will push your learning curve. This time we are going continue with some additional ideas on how to ramp up your practice sessions even when you don’t have the time and/or energy to go on an excursion.
We all have things that we should do and need to do, but try not to get into the habit letting those things become a good excuse for not taking a couple of minutes for yourself and your photography. I keep a camera near me in the house. It’s ready to go for the unexpected moments, such as this Cooper's Hawk image above, or for the ten or twenty minute breaks that I need to refresh myself.
But, just like you, I can tell myself, “There is nothing to photograph here!” When I come up with that excuse in my mind, I then add the following, “Well, find something!” In or around your home there are lots of things to photograph. They don’t have to be Rembrandts, but just need to usher in a mindset that gets you moving and creating images.
How do we find something to spark our photo imaginations? The idea here is to just start and you’ll be amazed at where it can take your creative mind.
Self-assignments for Practice:
2. Step out your door. Is there a new flower
that just bloomed, a spider on its web, or raindrops on a
leave after a storm?
6. Get into the habit of looking at routine objects in
different ways. Look closer and find details, angles
and shapes. Watch for texture and patterns too.
And change your perspective. Stand on a ladder or sit
on the ground to take a shot. Walk around and look at
the object from all sides, including the top and the bottom.
7. Try this exercise:
One of the main reasons you may not be able to find a subject to photograph is that you have too much from which to choose. Try limiting your space. Choose a single room like the kitchen or the bathroom. If you have a yard, choose just one area of the yard, such as a single planter box. Limit yourself by photographing your subject very realistically one day and then going back another time to take similar shots as abstracts.
8. And just in case you are in a location where you don’t have your camera physically with you, you can still make photographs in your mind. For example, waiting in line at the store; think about how you would take this overall scene, or the hands of the cashier, or the lady who is packing your groceries. Thinking about photographs and how to make them will become way of life. It’s a great habit to cultivate.
So get out there and practice with your eye and with your camera. Share the results with your friends. And have a great time doing it.
Would you like to
learn more and become an even better photographer?
To find other articles by Noella, just type her name and subject in the Search Box.
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