... really good for you. The No Words forum may be, IMO, one of the most useful and valuable exercises you can do to work on/with your photography. Last summer, I jumped into that forum with both feet and had more fun that I've had in ... I can't remember back to when photography was so much pure fun. But I felt sheepish and not a little guilty for spending so much time picking out pictures to match the posted themes and/or going out with those themes in mind. Did that really bother me? Nope. But it does please me no end to now have found what for me seems to be not only a good reason to post to the forum (which I hope to get back to soon), but makes it one of the best things you can do for your photography. Tastes great and is good for you! Here's what got me to this happy conclusion (for myself; I'm not promoting it for anybody else). I just got a new book by a photographer that I like, Pieter Hugo. He's known for 'adult' semi-journalistic, hard-biting pictures mainly from/of Africa (he's from South Africa). This new book, by contrast, is portraits of children; gorgeous, innovative portraits of children. How did he make such an odd switch in subject matter? He writes: When I returned to Rwanda on assignment in 2014, my own children were one and four years old. They had changed my way of looking at things. Whereas on previous visits to Rwanda I'd barely seen any children, this time I noticed them everywhere. Something changed in Hugo's life (he now had children of his own) to trigger an awareness of children everywhere. The interesting thing, to me, is that they were always there, he just didn't see them. Something had to "change [his] way of looking at things." Which brings me back to No Words. Last summer, when I was posting there all the time, every day (many times a day, if I admit it), I would look at the forum themes posted (for example, right now I see Sunglasses, Leaning, Smokers, Bus Stop, Smile!, Leaning, Unusual Signs, Cakes ... ) and they would act as mini-triggers; those mini-triggers would "change [my] way of looking at things." All those things would jump into view in my already-made pictures or when I went out looking for such things. *************************** Everything, or almost everything that we each — and I include in that all photographers from the least of us to the greatest, most famous, most exalted of us — is already in the presence of whatever it is that will be the topic of theme of our yet-to-be made great or not so great photographs. It's all already there. We simply need that trigger to "change or way of looking" and suddenly we "notice them everywhere." No Words exercises that process of making us notice. Naturally, noticing is just the beginning, but it is key.