I feel a lack of creativity...

Discussion in 'Portraits and Fashion' started by mike grossman, May 6, 2009.

  1. I've reached a point in my photography where I feel comfortable with many technical aspects of portraiture - in particular, lighting. I consider myself a Strobist disciple, for what it's worth. I have the chance to take a great photo - a grandmother surrounded by her four grandchildren, all four years old and under. I'm not so interested in taking everyone to the park or lining everyone up against a piece of seamless, throwing up a couple of umbrellas, and clicking away. The problem is, however, is that I'm at a loss for what else to do.
    Where do others go when they're feeling a need to be inspired or to get some unique ideas, particular for portrait and lighting purposes? I'd like to take a very ordinary subject - a grandmother with grandchildren, and turn it into something a bit unique and different...
     
  2. The problem with the photo you describe is that its easy to mess up. 4 kids, 4 and under, is a monumental task by itself. From a business perspective, line them up in a park or on some seamless and get them to all smile and look at you at the same time, without having their hands all over the place, up their noses, or covering their eyes. Usually the best shot of the four kids will include grandma looking down at all of the commotion. =o)
    From my perspective, I would get the 'safe' shot, as we call it, then if that works okay, go for something entirely different and fun afterwards. The ideas are endless, depending on the kids... from walking down a path all holding hands to making a totem pole, or all having them lay on the floor, heads all together, using a selective focus shot with grandma behind the kids out of focus a bit, the kids climbing all over her favorite chair with her in it, etc... you have to judge based on the grandma and kids what is actually possible. Or photoshop it!
    =o) hope that helps.
     
  3. Many places. Do you belong to a photography organization in your community where you can exchange ideas? Do you have an art museum/institute you could go and study exhibits? Do you take any classes from other photographers? Do you invest in books, magazines.
    I do many of these and still feel inept after every session or gig I do. It drives me to get better.
     
  4. You need to find a completely different point of view to reach a different result. Either you can make small changes in what you are doing and gradually reach something new, or make a radical departure and sudden change.
     
  5. I will take photography classes, network with other photographers, do photo shoots with other photographer and re-read some of my favorite photography books.
    But what is happening to you, feeling uninspired happens to most photographers.
    At least you do not have what I sometimes get. I will look over my photos for three years and think every photos sucks, are mundane and amateur looking. Then someone contacts me asking if they can work with me on a project and I feel better.
    Bill
     
  6. i read magazine, search the web, and experiment : )
     
  7. Music. Preferably classical.
    Pachelbel's Canon in D never fails me.
    A "left-brained" solution won't help a "right-brained" problem. Most of us have an over-dominant verbal/logical domain, and need to balance it with activity in the creative/sensory regions.
     
  8. Why does everybody seem to insist on all subjects looking at the camera?
    Get a situation where Grandma and the kids are all focussed on the same thing. A book, or at play with grandma, or walking hand in hand with Grandma. But, looking at the camera at the same time? Great. IF you can get it to happen. Let them interact in a controlled situation. That will get you your photograph, not waiting or hoping for a look at the camera. If the kids and grandma are not close, nothing you can set up will get the shot. If they are close, you won't have to worry about the interaction. It will happen.
    A portrait is about emotional ties. The placement of eyes is not a strict requirement to show that.
     

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