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8 Ideas to Spark Your Photographic Creativity

We all occasionally struggle with being creative.  Sometimes we just feel drained and like there is nothing creatively left to pull from.  Sometimes we get bored of what we have been doing and are looking for something new to try.  I tend to feel that way more in the winter or when I let myself get too busy.


Here are a few tips and projects you can try to pull yourself out of a creative slump.

  1. Visit an Art Museum. This has been my standby when I need a little creative spark.  I love art museums.  There seems to be an endless supply of beautiful imagery.  Don’t make this too difficult, your local art museum will be plenty good enough.  If you don’t have an art museum close, visit your local library and see what types of art books they have that you can check out and enjoy!
  2. Get Your Shoes on and Go For a Walk. If possible, walk a new trail our route around your city or neighborhood.  Take your camera or don’t! You can spark creativity by just thinking and letting some fresh air into your body. If you are more of an extrovert who likes people around to get creative, organize a small photowalk with a few of your friends.
  3. Experiment With Color. Spend an afternoon looking for creative ways to showcase color in your photos. Maybe you spend a few hours looking for interesting monochromatic images. Or maybe look for images using complementary colors. You could even do something similar looking for interesting textures.
  4. Get Creative with Blur.  Spend time playing with slow shutter speeds and blur.  You could use blur to create abstract or impressionistic images.  You could find moving subjects and work on using blur creatively to tell a story.
  5. Rent a New Lens. Trying out a new lens can give you a whole new perspective behind the camera.  If you have only been used to the kit lenses that came with your camera, grab a fixed focal length lens and experiment with some open apertures. If you have only been using fixed focal length lenses, find a zoom lens that looks interesting to you.  If you are feeling like neither of those would work for you, look for a fisheye lens, a macro lens, or even a tilt-shift lens or Lensbaby.  There are SO MANY options!
  6. Try a Different Type of Photography. There are so many different kinds of photography out there.  Likely you have only seriously done a couple of them.  So try a new one.  Here are a few options: street photography, landscape photography, macro photography, underwater photography, portrait photography, food photography, or maybe try light painting!
  7. Shoot a Still Life of an Ordinary Object. Shoot it as much as you need until you find a way to get a creative or interesting shot that you wouldn’t have initially thought of.  The object can be the plant on your windowsill, your child’s toy, your favorite books, etc. The possibilities are endless!
  8. Music. For some, music helps unleash your creative spirit. Spend an afternoon listening to that genre of music that you love but never get to listen to (or that those around you don’t necessarily enjoy when you crank it up!) For me, it is old big band Jazz. My kids and husband don’t necessarily love it, but I love to crank it up! Spotify, Pandora, or (if you have Amazon Prime) Amazon Music are good options when looking to find playlists.

Hopefully something on this list has given you an idea that you might try to slip out of that creative slump and into a creative spark!

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