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Author Topic: Lost inspiration  (Read 5130 times)

Hobby Shooter

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Lost inspiration
« on: July 11, 2013, 03:49:02 AM »
I have just moved continent, from Asia back to Europe. We've been home for just about a month now and I have barely touched my camera since. As my identity here indicates photography is a hobby, not my profession. I normally like portraits and street/travel.

Before we moved back I showed my pictures at a local gallery which was great fun, I even sold a few prints. I spent a lot of time preparing that show and shooting and shooting to get enough material. Maybe I got exhausted from that or maybe it is like a journalist friend of my said the other day: 'Transition kills creativity'. Maybe I have higher demands on myself now and am afraid to take bad pictures.

I hope to get it back soon enough though. I just wanted to share this with you guys here. Any thoughts of course are welcome. Do you lose inspiration sometimes? What do you do to get it back?

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Lost inspiration
« on: July 11, 2013, 03:49:02 AM »

SwissBear

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2013, 05:25:56 AM »
Well, for me its hard to shoot in a known environment, but then again I'm more the nature/cityscape photographer. The main reason is "I see it everyday, so it's nothing special".

I also need to be relaxed - if my to-do list is too long, my mind is not free enough to dive into the viewfinder.

Transition kills creativity

I must disagree with that because I see it as "a new place to discover".

Oh, and... as far as I know, everybody takes bad pictures. They showed us boxes of "garbage" from various artists during a lecture at the Fotomuseum Winterthur.
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insanitybeard

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2013, 05:33:18 AM »
I think most people lose inspiration from time to time for various reasons, general mood, circumstances, being unsatisfied with their output. Being overly critical of yourself doesn't help, and although inevitable, neither does trying to compare yourself to everybody else. Photography, and indeed art is so subjective. Quite often I've looked at a winning photograph in a competition and preferred the runner up. My main area of photography is landscape, but for the past few years with small children, I struggle to do much of it because I don't have the time, and I would like to buy some more equipment but I don't have the money! With landscape, what inspires me is travelling to beautiful places (the quieter the better) and having the privilege to view and capture that scene, some of my greatest highs have been just lingering on the tops of mountains for as long as I possibly can, savouring the view and the light. I can't imagine that awe will ever leave me.
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Hobby Shooter

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2013, 05:47:06 AM »
Thanks guys. I hope this is only temporary.

Swissbear, I didn't imply I never take bad pictures, it's more that I felt I'd lost my ability to take good ones.

Insanity, I try not to compare myself. I do try to learn from other more accomplished and skilled photographers, on the other hand I am quite comfortable with what's my style at least when it comes to portraits.  But it can always improve, I need to practice more.

To cure myself I even went out in the garden with the camera to try to catch some birds or squirrels, and I don't even like shooting birds very much.

I'll give it some time, get myself back into it. Hopefully something good will come out of this.

thanks
J

mrsfotografie

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2013, 06:07:05 AM »
I have just moved continent, from Asia back to Europe. We've been home for just about a month now and I have barely touched my camera since. As my identity here indicates photography is a hobby, not my profession. I normally like portraits and street/travel.

Why the urge to be 'professional'? Maybe you should try to be a little bit more casual in your photography, I find that this helps to relax myself and in the end come home with better results.

As for inspiration: maybe try a crazy wide angle prime for a change to open up a whole new perspective? I find that swapping lenses helps me in my creativity - I have 20+ lenses so that must mean I'm really creative  ::)
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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2013, 06:24:34 AM »
It has happened with me too and I didn't shoot anything for almost two months last year. The more I thought about it, the more I felt ...what the hell is happening to me! and sometimes bordering on ... what a waste of money buying all this gear if I'm not going to shoot!

The best thing right now would be to not let it weigh on your mind. Don't worry, it always comes back. 
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Hobby Shooter

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2013, 07:03:00 AM »
mrsfotografie, I have no urge at all becoming professional, I'd like to sell some more prints though to help finance this quite expensive hobby. It's a good idea trying something new. As I don't have a very wide selection of lenses, maybe I'll try a new style. I started trying out around long exposures a couple of months ago.

J.R thanks, I'm not there thinking about selling the stuff yet  ;D I'll try to stay back a while.

I guess this is similar to other things in life, finding lost inspiration and motivation. I'd say I also need to understand why I started with photography. What made it fun to start with.

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2013, 07:03:00 AM »

mrsfotografie

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2013, 07:06:45 AM »
I guess this is similar to other things in life, finding lost inspiration and motivation. I'd say I also need to understand why I started with photography. What made it fun to start with.

It is, I used to be an avid mountain biker for many years, but alas no-more (hoping the 'drive' will come back some day).
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Darlip

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2013, 07:10:53 AM »
I think the transition to being back could be a big part of it, as I understand it you went from Europe to Asia and now you are back in Europe?

And if this is a correct assumption then I would guess its the transition back that could be the issue. Based on my my own experience from working /traveling abroad for longer periods of time, 6-15 months, it always feels less "exotic" to be back and inspiration in general can be affected.

I'm in the same situation at the moment. I have just finished a longer deployment abroad combined with having spent almost a month together with my girlfriend driving on our own in Africa.  Somehow taking pictures of squirrels and mallards in Sweden doesn't quite match that ;)

But it gets better, this I can say from experience, as the transition usually is just a phase and soon enough the inspiration for taking pictures or whatever that makes your day will be back :)

Welcome back!
« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 10:50:23 AM by Darlip »
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insanitybeard

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2013, 07:29:25 AM »
I guess this is similar to other things in life, finding lost inspiration and motivation. I'd say I also need to understand why I started with photography. What made it fun to start with.

Doing landscape, I must admit, the experience is at least as if not more important than the photography itself- I am trying to record the scene as accurately as I can for my own record, to try to recreate the memory, the photography part itself, whilst of course enjoyable and satisfying is secondary.
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mb66energy

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2013, 08:00:08 AM »
Dear HobbyShooter, I have these problems from time to time - two or three times a year. Since I restartet photography in 2001 with a Powershot G2. The same questions akways: What a waste of money for the tools and will I ever reenter into photography.

Now I have a 6-week holiday but broken a leg shortly before my holiday. I planned to  do a lot of walking and photographing - but that has to wait now.

Photography is IMO not only taking the photo but it's also
  - previsualizing photographic ideas/setups
  - postprocessing in the classical sense: "virtual darkroom"
  - reflecting what I have photographed in the last months
  - reading about photography/enjoying other people's work.

A book which helped me to overcome a lot of frustration was
"The Art of Photography" from Broce Barnbaum, published in rockynook
Barnbaum is IMO open minded so he doesn't teach step-by-step
procedures for different subjects but he tries to help opening
YOUR ideas and gives HINTS how to put your package of ideas,
ideals, etc. into a photograph.
I read in the book from time to time and try his ideas on my
photographing or older photographs.

Another thing which helped me was to have a camera with me
- very often just 1 40D with the 40mm OR the 100mm macro.
Very versatile lenses and ... having just one tool at hand
is light wight but unleashes a lot of creativity ...

So: Good luck - Michael
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dilbert

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2013, 08:01:20 AM »
I have just moved continent, from Asia back to Europe. We've been home for just about a month now and I have barely touched my camera since. As my identity here indicates photography is a hobby, not my profession. I normally like portraits and street/travel.

Before you went to Asia, were you doing a lot of photography?

My guess is that since moving back "home", you've reverted to your "home self" which existed prior to photography.

Street photography is worthwhile in Asia because more people are outside and on the streets. In Europe and the USA, the streets are almost deserted (by comparison) unless you are in a big city downtown area. This means there is less subject matter to start with unless you go to the poorer countries in Europe (Romania might be interesting, Turkey another.)

The easiest way to reignite part of your passion is to travel around Europe. Go to places you haven't been before. Try to find a theme to pursue in all of the local towns or all of the towns within 50-100km. That'll get you out and traveling. Try something like taking photographs of all the pubs within said distance.

TommyLee

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2013, 08:41:48 AM »
I have just moved continent, from Asia back to Europe. We've been home for just about a month now and I have barely touched my camera since. As my identity here indicates photography is a hobby, not my profession. I normally like portraits and street/travel.

Before we moved back I showed my pictures at a local gallery which was great fun, I even sold a few prints. I spent a lot of time preparing that show and shooting and shooting to get enough material. Maybe I got exhausted from that or maybe it is like a journalist friend of my said the other day: 'Transition kills creativity'. Maybe I have higher demands on myself now and am afraid to take bad pictures.

I hope to get it back soon enough though. I just wanted to share this with you guys here. Any thoughts of course are welcome. Do you lose inspiration sometimes? What do you do to get it back?

I thought I had taken ALL the pics of my town......
and rolled to a halt...

I found if I get out for a walk ...re-meet the area...chat up some people...
I see new stuff...

I pushed my creativity out there...by taking  a fast lens (35mm, sig 85L) out in early morn sunrise ... and also an ultrawide angle..14mm......
these make me see more of what I missed in my seeming boredom....

just a thing that helped me

I mean if I was suddenly in Paris it would be easy...but in familiar digs.. you need to look around again

try the early morn thing ..life is happening in a diff way there
...I liked dilbert's idea..above........get a theme...yes that's it..
the am morn thing was a theme for me...get more themes...

then collect the best theme shots in folders and give yourself a show.. to check progress
good luck
TOM

« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 08:45:35 AM by TommyLee »

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2013, 08:41:48 AM »

emag

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2013, 09:23:08 AM »
Everybody loses their mojo once in a while.  I used to talk to Ron Rico about it, nowadays I find Jameson's helpful.  In other words.......don't sweat it.  One of my lifelong passions has been astronomy, but there have been extended periods where I did little (couple years here and there).  When the passion returns, it does so with a welcome vengeance.  The moon interferes with the deep sky astrophotography I prefer, but every so often I find myself doing visual with the moon with a high power eyepiece.  Two hours can pass with no perception of the time.

You will get your mojo back.  If you don't, you never had it in the first place.....but I don't believe that and neither do you.  Think of it like writer's block.

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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2013, 09:27:51 AM »
I have just moved continent, from Asia back to Europe. We've been home for just about a month now and I have barely touched my camera since. As my identity here indicates photography is a hobby, not my profession. I normally like portraits and street/travel.

Before we moved back I showed my pictures at a local gallery which was great fun, I even sold a few prints. I spent a lot of time preparing that show and shooting and shooting to get enough material. Maybe I got exhausted from that or maybe it is like a journalist friend of my said the other day: 'Transition kills creativity'. Maybe I have higher demands on myself now and am afraid to take bad pictures.

I hope to get it back soon enough though. I just wanted to share this with you guys here. Any thoughts of course are welcome. Do you lose inspiration sometimes? What do you do to get it back?

Could be jet lag. Will take sometime to get use to it. I saw your photos before - WONDERFULL ;)
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Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2013, 09:27:51 AM »