September 14, 2014, 10:28:16 PM

Author Topic: Lost inspiration  (Read 5105 times)

Rienzphotoz

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 3322
  • Peace unto all ye Canon, Nikon & Sony shooters
    • View Profile
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #15 on: July 11, 2013, 09:46:36 AM »
Do you lose inspiration sometimes? What do you do to get it back?
For me it happens every year ... here in Qatar the summer temperatures rise well above 50°C (121 Fahrenheit and can go up to 131 Fahrenheit) eve night temperatures consistently stay around 35°C (95 Fahrenheit) ... by the time I come home from work, it feels like the life juices have just vapurized from the body and all I want to do is relax and get some sleep ... so going out in the evening or getting up early during weekends just does not cross my mind ... so yeah there are plenty of times I feel like I lost inspiration but from October to April (when the temperatures cool down) I just go nuts making photos ... because my photography is mostly "seasonal" so I keep much of my post processing for summer months (from May to September) and learn a few more tricks in Photoshop, I also experiment by post processing my images a bit differently ... occasionally I mess around with macro photography using household items & take lots of pictures of my teenaged sons (much to their annoyance) ... I use the summer months to watch a lot of photography videos from Kelbytraining, Lydna.com & Creativelive, youtube tutorials etc ... this helps me to keep "in touch" with my passion during my "off season" and hopefully learn a thing or two about how to be a better photographer.   
Canon 5DMK3 70D | Nikon D610 | Sony a7 a6000 | RX100M3 | 16-35/2.8LII | 70-200/2.8LISII | 100/2.8LIS | 100-400LIS | 40/2.8 | 50/1.4 | 85/1.8 | 600EX-RTx2 | ST-E3-RT | 24/3.5 T-S | 10-18/4 OSS 16-50 | 24-70/4OSS | 55/1.8 | 55-210 OSS | 70-200/4 OSS | 28-300VR | HVL-F43M | GoPro Black 3+ & DJI Phantom

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #15 on: July 11, 2013, 09:46:36 AM »

Aswah

  • Power Shot G16
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
    • The Culinary Adventures of a Chef
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #16 on: July 11, 2013, 09:54:39 AM »
ok, I am going to take it out of the photography context for a minute.  I am an Executive Chef by trade (www.EatFigue) and constantly go in and out of being inspired.  When I am inspired I let the creativity flow and write all my ideas in a journal... when I am out of ideas and can't see the forest through the trees I refer back to my notebooks and seek inspiration.  It is doubly bad when I feel the same lack of inspiration with my camera...  Sometimes I just go through the motions and take pictures anyway.  Which translates roughly to I bring my camera to work and shoot some food or the interior/exterior of the restaurant.  I cannot force creativity...  it just comes and I ride the wave while it is here... Good Luck!

Francois de Melogue
www.ChefdeMelogue.com

Aswah

  • Power Shot G16
  • **
  • Posts: 21
    • View Profile
    • The Culinary Adventures of a Chef
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #17 on: July 11, 2013, 09:58:05 AM »
Reinphotoz... great reply.  I live in Palm Springs area of California...  same temperature ranges.  Going out and shooting in 123 degree weather just sucks.  All I want to do is sit in my pool with a cocktail.  I also go to Lynda.com and watch videos of techniques...  I work from 9 am to 10 pm five to six days a week... Sometimes it is just hard to find time...
Francois de Melogue
www.ChefdeMelogue.com

wellfedCanuck

  • EOS M2
  • ****
  • Posts: 248
    • View Profile
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #18 on: July 11, 2013, 10:15:03 AM »
Everyone's different, but I'd suggest not to force it. Don't worry about themes, travel or projects to re-kindle inspiration- just put the camera away for a month or even 6 and take up another hobby for a while. You're already infected- the photography bug will come back on its own.
Don't take my advice. Don't even take my advice not to take my advice.

Rienzphotoz

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 3322
  • Peace unto all ye Canon, Nikon & Sony shooters
    • View Profile
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #19 on: July 11, 2013, 10:20:50 AM »
Reinphotoz... great reply.  I live in Palm Springs area of California...  same temperature ranges.  Going out and shooting in 123 degree weather just sucks.  All I want to do is sit in my pool with a cocktail.  I also go to Lynda.com and watch videos of techniques...  I work from 9 am to 10 pm five to six days a week... Sometimes it is just hard to find time...
Thanks. I consider myself a regular Joe going about my daily life to provide a better living and better opportunities for my family ... so "inspiration" is not something that is constant with me ... even by definition, "inspiration" is more of a sudden stimulation rather than a constant state of mind ... so I guess its alright not be inspired all of the time ... from my limited experience I only know of two kinds of people who are "inspired" all of the time i.e. folks who are high on some exotic weed or people like Sheldon Cooper from Bing Bang Theory  ;D). But seriously though, like you said, we gotta ride the wave while it lasts and most importantly keep an eye for the "wave" and ride it as far as we can and not be discouraged or overly concerned about "downtime".
Canon 5DMK3 70D | Nikon D610 | Sony a7 a6000 | RX100M3 | 16-35/2.8LII | 70-200/2.8LISII | 100/2.8LIS | 100-400LIS | 40/2.8 | 50/1.4 | 85/1.8 | 600EX-RTx2 | ST-E3-RT | 24/3.5 T-S | 10-18/4 OSS 16-50 | 24-70/4OSS | 55/1.8 | 55-210 OSS | 70-200/4 OSS | 28-300VR | HVL-F43M | GoPro Black 3+ & DJI Phantom

RLPhoto

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 3444
  • Gear doesn't matter, Just a Matter of Convenience.
    • View Profile
    • My Portfolio
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #20 on: July 11, 2013, 10:24:04 AM »
It happens, but the question is do you continue to revel in it? Try shooting something you've never done before and that usually kicks it back in.

Hobby Shooter

  • Guest
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #21 on: July 11, 2013, 10:37:33 AM »
Hi all, thanks for all the thoughtful and kind answers. This forum is a very nice place and clearly has a lot of thinking and caring members.

I like the parallels to other activities, it's something we go through from time to time.

Dilbert, yes I have been shooting on and off my whole adult life (now middle aged), but the last few years I have been more active and focused than before. You're definitely right about the cities, even though Stockholm is a fairly large city, it is quiet as a small village compared to Saigon or Bangkok or even Phnom Penh where we have mainly lived the last few years.

I have a good friend from Asia, an American that now lives in South America, he asked me to shoot the city of Stockholm as he have never seen it. I think that can be a nice mission the next couple of months.

I can't respond to all of you, I won't take your time, but I have read all answers thoroughly and will mix it up into something that should get me back into it soon enough. It's not just a hobby, it's a way of seeing the world and expressing myself and crate something so I hope photography will stay with me.

Again, many thanks to all of you for your thoughts. It's an interesting discussion and hopefully it continues.

J

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #21 on: July 11, 2013, 10:37:33 AM »

Hobby Shooter

  • Guest
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #22 on: July 11, 2013, 10:40:26 AM »
Ramon, just saw your reply now, yes I will try that also. Discover something new.

You mentioned revel, I checked out the homepage of Aswah's restaurant. It made me hungry so now I gotta cook some dinner.

P_R

  • PowerShot G1 X II
  • ***
  • Posts: 39
    • View Profile
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #23 on: July 11, 2013, 10:58:14 AM »
I lost my mojo too a few times. Not sure what causes it, but I found a few ways to deal with it:

1. buy new gear. could be just a filter, software, maybe a book.  That lens you have coveted ($ permitting!). Once you have it you have to try it out right?

2. Use what you have but in a new way.  A long exposure (30+seconds), tripod, plus a torch to draw my sons name in light popped me back into the "zone"

3. Go with someone to take pics together. bring beer (or wine or food) and one way or another it will be a good time!

4. hire something out of your reach to buy - 300mm f/2.8?  600mm?  TS/E? Or multiple flashes to setup a more complex shoot? You shoot street, so maybe try indoors/studio for a brief change?  In my case just trying to master a single manual flash has been a multi-year trek...

5. offer friends an outdoor family shoot. think about poses, locations, setup and see how you go.

And once you do shake it off, post a few shots here so we can all enjoy them.
It doesn't matter where you start, it's where you finish.  All that counts is the photograph.

Jeremy

  • Power Shot G16
  • **
  • Posts: 23
    • View Profile
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #24 on: July 11, 2013, 11:12:26 AM »
I think it's pretty common to step away for a while, especially when life circumstance change.  My step-back was quite drastic.  Back in the early 90s I shot a roll of film every day for nearly 3 years, trying to make it as an artist.  I failed miserably because I didn't know the business side of being an artist.  I spent so much time shooting and in the darkroom that I burned out.  I started a different career and, for a DECADE, didn't even think about photography.  I had various point and shoots, but that was it.  When digital SLRs came out I bought a Sony 828 (I know, not and SLR, but a heck of a camera for its time) and rediscovered creative photography.  Photography is my career now.  The decade I spent selling computer systems taught me everything about business I didn't know 20 years ago.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 11:17:04 AM by Jeremy »

distant.star

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1485
    • View Profile
    • Tracy's Shooting Gallery
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #25 on: July 11, 2013, 11:49:29 AM »
I'd say I also need to understand why I started with photography. What made it fun to start with.

Here's a different view of what you're experiencing. (I'm no psychologist so this is just an idea -- feel free to tell me I'm a crackpot.)

What you're experiencing, based on what you've described, may be more a sense of grief than non-inspiration. Sounds like in Asia you had a rewarding feedback loop -- a sustained group of people who saw and liked your work. That system provides support and inspiration to go further and to keep at it. Having lost that you are now faced with starting over -- and it's hard to generate momentum. To put it in baseball terms, after you've played in a stadium full of spectators, knocking out fly balls by yourself doesn't seem very rewarding.

In a meaningful human relationship, we have everyday life, all that we do -- together, apart, it's just normal routine. The rewarding part of the human relationship is the intimacy, the simple moments of sharing. Equating that to photography, taking pictures is the everyday or so of simply getting out and doing it.  Rewards come in the pleasure of good image -- and sharing it, knowing other people appreciate it as you do and value you and what you've done.

Your pondering of the "why" you take pictures is indicative of the human grief process. When we've lost something we eventually go back to thinking about how it started in the first place, how did we come to have such a thing that has now been lost. I think it's part of the starting over. Unconsciously, we're looking to recreate/regain what has been lost.

You may want to think about looking for community in your current setting. Get involved with people who take good pictures -- experience the sharing of their work. Maybe share some of your past work. You may find in that a reason to create anew.

Overall I wouldn't worry much about it. If you're someone who really enjoys photography, eventually you'll be doing it again with enthusiasm.

Oh and you may want to think about one thing I tell people who think you need to travel to do great photograpy:

Your "exotic" location is someone else's boring home. Move along folks, nothing to see here.

Walter: Were you listening to The Dude's story? Donny: I was bowling. Walter: So you have no frame of reference here, Donny. You're like a child who wanders into the middle of a movie and wants to know...

Hobby Shooter

  • Guest
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #26 on: July 11, 2013, 12:41:33 PM »
I'd say I also need to understand why I started with photography. What made it fun to start with.

Here's a different view of what you're experiencing. (I'm no psychologist so this is just an idea -- feel free to tell me I'm a crackpot.)

What you're experiencing, based on what you've described, may be more a sense of grief than non-inspiration. Sounds like in Asia you had a rewarding feedback loop -- a sustained group of people who saw and liked your work. That system provides support and inspiration to go further and to keep at it. Having lost that you are now faced with starting over -- and it's hard to generate momentum. To put it in baseball terms, after you've played in a stadium full of spectators, knocking out fly balls by yourself doesn't seem very rewarding.

In a meaningful human relationship, we have everyday life, all that we do -- together, apart, it's just normal routine. The rewarding part of the human relationship is the intimacy, the simple moments of sharing. Equating that to photography, taking pictures is the everyday or so of simply getting out and doing it.  Rewards come in the pleasure of good image -- and sharing it, knowing other people appreciate it as you do and value you and what you've done.

Your pondering of the "why" you take pictures is indicative of the human grief process. When we've lost something we eventually go back to thinking about how it started in the first place, how did we come to have such a thing that has now been lost. I think it's part of the starting over. Unconsciously, we're looking to recreate/regain what has been lost.

You may want to think about looking for community in your current setting. Get involved with people who take good pictures -- experience the sharing of their work. Maybe share some of your past work. You may find in that a reason to create anew.

Overall I wouldn't worry much about it. If you're someone who really enjoys photography, eventually you'll be doing it again with enthusiasm.

Oh and you may want to think about one thing I tell people who think you need to travel to do great photograpy:

Your "exotic" location is someone else's boring home. Move along folks, nothing to see here.
Hi, thanks for your reply. I'm not going to call you a crackpot, I never do. But I will thank you for your thoughts here, they definitely make sense. Back in Cambodia I had some good friends that also like to take pictures and we would often walk together combining the two greats of drinking beer and taking pictures in the afternoons and some early morning walks by the Mekong river.

Here it's empty. I got my old buddies, but none are interested in photography. I'll probably make an effort and join a photography society or something.

I try to see the positive side of things, I like to see it as my 'boring' home is someone's exotic location. I should get out and take pictures of it.

Again thanks for taking the time to reply to this.

J

Hobby Shooter

  • Guest
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #27 on: July 13, 2013, 01:54:25 PM »
Funniest thing happened. I picked up my wife at the airport today, she had to stay back a few weeks to finish her contract back in Cambodia. I had forgotten that she had bought the EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Maro for my brother in law (who by the way is away for a week). Me and my daughter brought it to use in the garden this afternoon shooting flowers and critters. My first try at Macro, it was a lot of fun, but I also realized how difficult it was getting focus exactly where you want. It was a lot of fun and I know what I'll be doing over the next couple of weeks. I texted my brother in law and said that customs had dropped the bag with the lens and that it was broken, let's see if he buys it...

I also took a few portraits of my beautiful wife with it. I have to agree with other posters that it's a very good portraits lens.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #27 on: July 13, 2013, 01:54:25 PM »

Hobby Shooter

  • Guest
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #28 on: July 13, 2013, 01:55:06 PM »
Here's another one from this afternoon.

Hobby Shooter

  • Guest
Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #29 on: July 13, 2013, 01:56:12 PM »
Actually, here it is...


canon rumors FORUM

Re: Lost inspiration
« Reply #29 on: July 13, 2013, 01:56:12 PM »