Home · Register · Search · View Winners · Software · Hosting · Software · Join Upload & Sell

Moderated by: Fred Miranda
Username   Password

  New fredmiranda.com Mobile Site
  New Feature: SMS Notification alert
  New Feature: Buy & Sell Watchlist
  

FM Forums | Alternative Gear & Lenses | Join Upload & Sell

1       2      
3
       4              8       9       end
  

Archive 2012 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?
  
 
corposant
Offline
• • • •
Upload & Sell: On
p.3 #1 · p.3 #1 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


mortyb wrote:
Carsten, you seem too deep into things.

All you need is a good eye, a camera and motivation. You're spending time and energy on things that doesn't matter. Upgrading to CS6, worrying about backlog, thinking of raw converters, learning D800 (seriously?) ... I think you've lost it.

Get back to basics. Forget all the other "noise". Take your D800, mount a 50mm lens, use M mode, shoot jpg. When you get home, review your shots. Delete (for good) all shots that doesn't work for you right there and then. Work quickly on those that do. End. Finito. Session's over.


This is the best advice so far.

I think the worst advice is to buy something new. Mapplethorpe created wonderful floral images when he wasn't focused on people. Ritts had many personal projects aside from his fashion photography. Neither required new gear (maybe new film, though) to follow through with them.

There are many places to find inspiration - museums, bookstores, galleries, etc. As I am sure this comment will disappoint many people who read it, I don't think gear discussion is one of those places. You may need a computer to refine the images you take with your D800, but your computer can't create new images that push you to develop as a photographer.



Nov 19, 2012 at 04:10 AM
StevenPA
Offline
• • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #2 · p.3 #2 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Some things that have worked for me are...

1. Bring along just a 32MB CF card (or whatever size card it is these days that give you just 8-10 shots). Shoot some, delete some when another shot that you think is better than what you have comes along. Reason: the ability to shoot limitless photos with modern cameras reduces the need to be critical of each shot (because you can just shoot everything and sort it out at home... which adds to the backlog, which you want to get rid of, so win-win).

2. Spend a day being a tourist in a different city. Take the train to a neighbouring city, explore its historical sites, cultural locations, markets, or even just a nice park.

3. Time your shooting outings to be very short. Go somewhere and wait until the light is just right. Take a few shots. Go home. Baby steps. Go back on a different day if you feel the need.

4. Be spontaneous. Look at the sky. If the clouds are just right, get yourself out there no matter what to get an even better shot of what you've taken pictures of before. I love going back to the same points again and again to see how the scene can be different. It's especially cool if you can get the same scene in four different seasons, overcast, rainy, sunny, whatever. This is potentially a year-long project that works well.

5. Get away from the forums and gear talk. Take one camera, one lens, no bag. Sling the camera on your shoulder. Simplify.

6. Do something else. Don't force it. Let yourself have a 2 month break, or however long it takes to get that urge again.

7. Do a "Day in My Life" project. Take 10 random photos that represent your day, one per hour, or something like that. Put them all in a row beside each other. Then do it again. January Day in My Life, February Day in my life. Go for the very regular stuff. I used to keep a diary. Ten years later, the regular days make the most interesting reading. Photography can be the same. Say to yourself, this stuff is boring now, but in three years, it will be more interesting.

8. Don't buy anything new. If anything, sell something.



Nov 19, 2012 at 04:20 AM
edwardkaraa
Offline
• • • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #3 · p.3 #3 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Excellent points by Morty, corposant and Steven.

I am personally enjoying again our hobby since I bought the M9. The size of the body and lenses, and the more spontaneous way of working is giving me more motivation to shoot daily.



Nov 19, 2012 at 04:30 AM
carstenw
Offline
• • • • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #4 · p.3 #4 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Makten wrote:
Me, for the exact same reasons. Except maybe for the backlog, since I just "let go" of any image that isn't processed in a couple of days, and I seldom shoot more than 10 frames per time I'm out.

I'm constantly waiting for THE camera, but it will never come and I have to learn how to deal with that. I think I should try to minimize my gear (again) and just use one lens and one camera for a while. But then I have to sell stuff I bought very recently, with great loss. Some might say "just use one
...Show more

I think you have found your camera already: the D700. It gives you what you want. Maybe look for a different way to carry it so that the weight doesn't bother you so much. The OM-D is great for travelling and bicycling, so I would keep that too. Two cameras for someone as deeply into photography as you is hardly excessive. I would simply learn how not to let the other camera bother you. Somehow you are trying to be very puritanical, like those religious guys who whip themselves Maybe sell a lens or two. What do you have at the moment?



Nov 19, 2012 at 07:19 AM
carstenw
Offline
• • • • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #5 · p.3 #5 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


This will probably be the longest post I have ever made But most was written by others.

mortyb wrote:
Get back to basics. Forget all the other "noise". Take your D800, mount a 50mm lens, use M mode, shoot jpg. When you get home, review your shots. Delete (for good) all shots that doesn't work for you right there and then. Work quickly on those that do. End. Finito. Session's over.


cputeq wrote:
Your problems (too much gear, backlog) is exactly what I use to kick-start myself sometimes. I limit my choices, and I shoot less often.

[...]

But the backlog - Slow down your photo taking I don't have the patience (or time) to do film, but try to limit yourself - either by forced using JPEG that you won't process, or by intentionally bringing tiny memory cards and making all shots count


scottam10 wrote:
Yep, agree with limiting yourself to just 1 or 2 lenses and a body each time you go out. I find that I just enjoy shooting whatever I have with me, rather than carrying a bagful of lenses which is heavy and slows me down always wondering if I have the right lens mounted.

[...]

I don't enjoy spending hours on a computer so my processing is simple - I shoot JPEG, then cull bad/weak photos, crop/auto contrast on the ones I like and that's it.


I do already often take just one camera, one lens, usually D800+50P or E-PL3+12/2. Every day to work, for example. My problem is not so much in carrying lots of stuff and not knowing what to pull out, or killing myself with the weight. My problem is more along the lines of not knowing what to shoot. You know, when the surroundings are too familiar. And switching up what I shoot (landscape -> macro, macro -> architecture, ...) doesn't really work for me, this is what I did last few times I slowed down JPG doesn't work for me at all, I hate the results to the point where it demotivates me, and most of what I do requires pulling back the highlights, boosting the shadows, or similar.


Xtobolic wrote:
But the pictures that I took that I like most are pictures of humans. especially pictures I took in a project (which I can't share because the pictures involve mentally handicapt persons).

[...]

Go another route, a less comfortable one, do something new, take just 1 or 2 lenses and a body. Forget about the lenses you have at home and why you maybe should have brought that other one that now stands on your drawer.


The point about shooting people is an interesting one... I would love to shoot people, but I am missing two things to do so: time and studio. Street is not really my thing, I don't like sneaking shots of strangers, really. I have done it, but I don't really enjoy it. Studio portraits I would love to try, but my apartment is really very small, and bringing people back here would intrude on my family. I need to wait until my life changes a bit for this one, but it is there on my list of things I would like to try. The one thing which could work is to shoot strangers on the street with permission. I have wanted to try this...


RustyBug wrote:
If you have been shooting infinity, shoot mfd. Been shooting handheld, shoot tripod. Shooting first curtain sync, try rear curtain sync. Drag your shutter, lie on the ground, climb a ladder, shoot landscapes in portrait orientation. Shoot high key, low key, etc.


The ladder is an interesting idea, I have wanted to try carrying around a stool and my big GT3541XLS, and try shooting from 2m height to see what that looks like. I need to find a strong, light stool...


Tariq Gibran wrote:
1) Stop "editing" yourself before you shoot.

2) Dumb down your process and equipment.

3) set up a system which controls how or when you actually shoot.


I have to edit myself before I shoot, there is little room on my hard drive I do shoot with simple stuff regularly. My problem is more in the mind than with the equipment. 3) is interesting. I have to think about how I could devise a system which would inspire me.


saneproduction wrote:
Pick up a Nikon film body and shoot some tri-x. If the weather is bad, minimize shooting the sky, try shooting some street.


Ah yes, I forgot to mention my FM2 with Tri-X on my shelf To be honest, I prefer medium format. I should get my Hasselblad set up again, I did love that camera.


chez wrote:
Best suggestion is to get off this forum for a month and go out and shoot a project. Challenge yourself. If you are a street shooter, go shoot landscape. If you shoot landscape, go shoot architecture etc...

[...]

And don't go into hibernation during the winter months. What a wonderful season to be out photographing...especialy if you have weather and snow. What more does one need. If I was to hibernate during the winter months, I would lose out half the year. I actually love as one season says goodbye and another makes its appearence. Keeps things interesting.


I will definitely go out in the winter, but surely it is better to catch up with a backlog in the winter than in the summer At least around here: little snow, short days, grey grey grey.


kewlcanon wrote:
Use the crappiest P&S cam you can get and start shooting.


I use my iPhone like that. I have fun with it, but it doesn't really change my level of motivation.


cputeq wrote:
Actually, if you really want to get unstuck - Try to duplicate the shots in Light: Science and Magic

I think that book is actually responsible for getting me stuck (I couldn't duplicate a rim lighting shot they had) and I gave up!


So you recommend to me something which got you stuck I have that book, great book, and I am about halfway through. I need to clean up my table before I could try those tips, and anyway, I have just one strobe and one flash, so I couldn't try everything. I could pick up another cheap flash I suppose.


Mescalamba wrote:
Buying new camera and trying to master it. Pick something from "fringe division".

So far I didnt get stucked, I just need better gear. :/ Or I think I do..


I am deep down that road. I need to back up a bit


edwardkaraa wrote:
We all have ups and downs. Nothing to worry about. You will bounce back Carsten. Your interest in photography will come back by itself eventually, without any special effort from your side.


I am sure it will. I think that working on my tens of backlogs is probably the sanest thing I can do right now, as well as selling some equipment.


wayne seltzer wrote:
Take a vacation in early Dec to a new place in the world where you have never been and enjoy exploring it and capturing it. Getting out in nature far from work and the grind with my camera is my therapy and keeps me out of photography ruts.


I regularly go as far away as I can on Sundays, but I can't really go further. I work full-time and have a family...


millsart wrote:
When you don't feel like shooting, do something else. Simple as that.

Most of us don't really have time for all the hobbies we'd like to try so when the photography takes a back seat, we can perhaps pick up our guitar again, or maybe try home brewing some beer etc.


I do have a gift certificate for a beer brewing course I should do that sometime over the winter...


freaklikeme wrote:
I will pick a single lens and camera and use nothing else. I tried first to set a time limit on it, but I don't always have a full day or a weekend or a week to devote to photography. So now I stop when I've got five shots that I'd be proud to print.

[...]

Carsten, it seemed like mastering HDR pushed you quite a bit, so that may be all you need. How comfortable are you with strobes? How about macro?

[...]

If all else fails, take a break. Sometimes spending time without the camera makes you appreciate having it.


I recently picked up the Contax Macro Bellows and a Nikon adapter ring. I need to find my Contax mount for my 50/1.7 but I looked without success so far. I need to organise an in-depth search. I never really lose stuff, so this is a bit weird, to be honest. I have a strobe and a flash, which should be enough for some macros, but I am also attracted to still lifes. I need more space in my mind before I attack anything like that though.


LightShow wrote:
I've had a multidirectional life, too many interests, too little time, and the results are predictable,
try and go forwards, backwards, left, & right at the same time....
You go no where!
Spend a week doing like tasks, processing/learning programs one week, test lenses and film another week etc...

I sense a bit of obsessive compulsive tendencies in sweating the details
re: which paper is better, which lens, which program, which system etc...etc...etc... Stop it
Seriously you get far more enjoyment out of it if you don't sweat the small stuff, focus on the craft, not the tools.


I don't know why you say "a bit", when I clearly have "a lot" I am fanatical about finishing things I start. I don't mean finishing shooting HDRs or whatever, just not leaving things half-done. The more half-done things in my life, the less I can concentrate well on things I am doing. I need to work on the backlog


Spyro P. wrote:
you dont shoot for a living, right?
Just dont shoot then, let it go, do something else or nothing at all, live life. Its the third time I'm doing it, first time it lasted 5 years, 2nd time it lasted 2 years, this time round it lasted less than a year and I'm already slowly getting back into it. Very slowly, and I dont touch my camera for days sometimes weeks, until I really feel like it.

I too had a massive backlog (quriously enough it was digital photos, somehow I always found the courage to scanvelop my film). The backlog
...Show more

I have a fair amount of travel and family shots, and want to go once through my complete collection and delete stuff that isn't great. I have started on a few separate occasions and made some progress, but there is more to do. First I want to unify my library though. I hate having stuff in many separate places.


corposant wrote:
I think the worst advice is to buy something new. Mapplethorpe created wonderful floral images when he wasn't focused on people. Ritts had many personal projects aside from his fashion photography. Neither required new gear (maybe new film, though) to follow through with them.

There are many places to find inspiration - museums, bookstores, galleries, etc. As I am sure this comment will disappoint many people who read it, I don't think gear discussion is one of those places. You may need a computer to refine the images you take with your D800, but your computer can't create new images
...Show more

Yes, I should read more of my books.


StevenPA wrote:
Some things that have worked for me are...

1. Bring along just a 32MB CF card

2. Spend a day being a tourist in a different city.

3. Time your shooting outings to be very short.

4. Be spontaneous.

5. Get away from the forums and gear talk.

6. Do something else.

7. Do a "Day in My Life" project.

8. Don't buy anything new.


1. That would get me 1/2 shot But this tip is not useful for me, I am quite good at editing/restraining myself as I shoot. I know what kinds of shots I throw away when I get home. I will sometimes shoot them anyway, just to check if there was something there, then delete them on the spot. I don't need more editing in my life

2. No opportunity right now, with work and family. Maybe soon?

3. I think that doesn't work for my situation. It takes me time to get to places which are interesting to shoot, and once there, I don't want to turn around and go back right away.

4. I try

5. I was afraid someone would say that. I really enjoy the forums, the banter, the photos, the posting, ... I am not sure that it would help me. I should try it sometimes, for a couple of weeks at least.

6. Well, I do. I am a programmer, and am teaching myself Objective-C and iOS programming at the moment. I have a few ideas for apps I would like to try to write, and might even switch jobs based on this work. I also picked up a Raspberry Pi and will go through the programming tutorials. I haven't done hardware programming yet, and I would find that interesting. In fact, come to think of it, I have too many things there too

7. I did the one shot per day for a year project. Great, but I am looking for something deeper now, something less random, more focused. Urbex was it for the summer, but the opportunities and the light are not there right now.

8. I try


---

Thanks for the suggestions everyone! I think it is quite clear that I need to work on my backlog, and stop buying equipment and sell some instead.

I have also realised that some of my old projects feel interesting to me again now, so maybe I will spend some time visiting my roots, so to say. For example, I love shooting in the Technikmuseum here in Berlin, old locomotives and planes. I should spend some time there again.



Nov 19, 2012 at 08:43 AM
Bob Sumitro
Offline
• •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #6 · p.3 #6 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


carstenw wrote:
But this wasn't meant to be about me only.

Who else is stuck? Why?


I'm stuck too, but I don't really know why.It's been almost a year now. It's like one day I woke up and find my 7D and the lenses are just too heavy to carry. I carry them and use them less and less. I bought a small prime lens so I have a small and light kit, I use it for a while and then found this kit also became too big and too heavy.

Early this month I went for a vacation in Bali. I didn't bring my camera. It was the first time I went to a vacation without a camera. I never went to a vacation without a camera. I remember about 11 years ago, my brother borrowed my SLR, and he still needed it when I was about to leave for vacation. So the night before leaving I went to a camera shop and bought a Yashica pocket camera and rolls of film so that I have a camera with me.

When I birdwatch, I left my camera at home and only carry my trinovid. The funny thing is, it's a lot more fun to just use a binocular and observe the birds, and not worry about taking pictures of the birds.

So, to fight it, I bought Sony RX100 several days ago. I also think about selling my 7D and all the lenses I have, and just use the RX100. I hope this camera can give me back my passion to photography.

I decided to just take pictures, no post-processing, JPEG only. I do not want worries about changing lens, flash, bag to carry, what lens to carry etc, etc. I want to simplify it, do a simple point and shoot photography. I hope it will bring back the fun in and love for photography.








Nov 19, 2012 at 09:25 AM
philber
Offline
• • • • •
Upload & Sell: On
p.3 #7 · p.3 #7 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Carsten, count me in, too. For the first time in my brief history as a photographer, I got stuck with backlog, and really no fire to deal with it and post...
My issue was/is simple, as I see it. I want to produce "fine pictures", whatever that means, instead of "making love to the subject", if you will pardon my French metaphor. I already am down to one camera and two lenses 99% of the time (NEX 7, Elmar 24, Summilux 50), so simplifying the gear is no longer an "un-sticking resource".
But let me give you an example: last Thursday was a fine autumun afternoon, and I went to Versailles Palace and gardens. Worked hard at getting fine shots from my 50, a focal length (equiv. 75) that I was never good at except for portraits. Got some good shots, maybe even very good. Still in backlog.
Friday evening, a client of mine was late. I had time (10 minutes) to kill in a very busy street. Saw something I liked. Couldn't even pull my tripod, there was so much bustle. Squeezed 6 handheld shots, of which two are sharp enough (1/10s) with my 24. They look really good, and the emotion factor is there. I am even thinking of sending them to my client, as they are opposite her office. And for sure I am going back there at night when I can do a set with tripod and all. It will be fun, because it is a building on which light from a massive display gets reflected, the light of which changes constantly.

Summary: don't make this feel like work. Get "intent", "purpose", "right", or "fine", or "well regarded" or "technically superb" out of your mind. Concentrate on your emotions, on fun, on having a good time. Your pictures will reflect this, and you appetite for processing will return (pray forgive this second French metaphor).



Nov 19, 2012 at 10:10 AM
ukkisavosta
Offline
• •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #8 · p.3 #8 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Interesting thread and responses.

I'm also a bit stuck, but I try not to worry about it too much, as I know the reasons behind it all too well: too many hobbies and interests, too little time with three kids and the whole shebang, as well as my inquiring nature, which causes me to immerse myself completely in something new. I then tend to grow tired of the subject rather quickly when the deeper stuff and "hard work" begins. I am currently trying to educate myself in color management and printing, and there are so many factors involved... but I'll get there.

As far as gear goes, I try to keep myself from the urge to switch gear, as I think it would only complicate matters: I would need time to connect with new gear and I would probably grow tired of the inevitable quirks I would be faced with - even to the point of regretting the switch. I rather try to make my kit as varied as possible so that I can shoot landscape/macro/abstract/sports/architecture/people/concerts when I feel like it. For example, I recently shot a jazz concert and it felt very refreshing for a change. It also made me glad I got the Sigma 85, although it hasn't seen much use recently.

I've also grown tired of my usual surroundings. I do have a few day's trip to London coming up in early December, but at the same time I'm trying to figure out if I want to concentrate on shooting at all. I'll probably only take a fairly minimal kit with me (NEX + Sigma 30mm + Helios 58mm, where the Helios would be used for street and the Sigma for everything else - I'll just stitch if I need a wider angle).

Jaakko



Nov 19, 2012 at 10:27 AM
JohnJ
Offline
• • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #9 · p.3 #9 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


I'm not offering and advice here, which would be the blind leading the blind.

It's all about motivation, and that's different for all of us. I haven't shot any personal stuff for a long time now and I think it's because I simply have no goal. I don't show my prints, I rarely post them, pretty much anywhere, I don't hang them on walls. Nothing. I shoot cars for magazines, and other work, so I'm certainly shooting all the time but even that is demoralising these days as rates and publications vanish by the day. I joined a camera club a year ago and I think I'll start entering the print competion just to force myself to get out and shoot some different stuff.

I've always kept a notebook with ideas and it's so old now that it's actually starting to fall apart. I have lots of ideas that I think would make great images, or even entire projects or potential shows in a gallery. But it's one thing to have an idea and another to have the motivation and drive to actually make it happen. Talk is cheap.

We are driven by different things. I am not an artist. I have nothing to say so in a way I have nothing to photograph either. I'm sick to death of compositionally perfect images, pretty pictures, that have no meaning. That was a challenging and worthwhile goal when shooting on film, ie getting it in camera, but in this digital world every image can be compositionally perfect, after a few mouse clicks. Not my cup of tea however.

If you do have a statement you need to make, or a cause to support then that might be the motivation you need to get you going. I found that motivation about 2 years ago for a very long term project that I started but I simply couldn't maintain the motivation. I must admit I hate sitting in front of a computer editing images and that was a big part of this project. I think that's why it kind of died, or maybe it's just in hibernation.

I love reading old photography books and find them great for inspiration and ideas. I hardly ever read books written this century, and preferably not even the last one but that's not easy. There was a proliferation of books in the 30-40's so there are lots of interesting books from that era. However the earlier books, the earlier the better, are fascinating to me. Carsten, if you find a cheap, but nice, copy of Leni Riefenstahls 'Schönheit im olympischen Kampf' (1937) kicking around in a used book shop then please PM me! I'm not kidding.

Strangely, I do love photography, reading about it, constantly learning new and preferably very old techniques, but I feel little to no drive to do it at present. Strange.

Good luck finding inspiration/motivation, and when you figure it out, please let me know.

JJ

Edited on Nov 19, 2012 at 10:55 AM · View previous versions



Nov 19, 2012 at 10:50 AM
Makten
Offline
• • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #10 · p.3 #10 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


rattymouse wrote:
You've soured on your GF670?



Yes, that was a long time ago. It didn't focus properly (like every other rangefinder I've had) and I like to see through the lens. So I got a Hasselblad 500 C/M instead, which I haven't used for more than like 3 rolls.

carstenw wrote:
I think you have found your camera already: the D700. It gives you what you want. Maybe look for a different way to carry it so that the weight doesn't bother you so much. The OM-D is great for travelling and bicycling, so I would keep that too. Two cameras for someone as deeply into photography as you is hardly excessive. I would simply learn how not to let the other camera bother you. Somehow you are trying to be very puritanical, like those religious guys who whip themselves Maybe sell a lens or two. What do you have
...Show more

The D700 is definitely not the right camera for me. I really, really hate to use it, but I love the results. The problem is, that whenever I pick the OM-D I know it's not gonna make as good pictures as the D700, and so I can't be happy with it.

There is simply no camera on the market that fits me. So I don't even have the motivation to sell stuff and get "one camera, one lens", because what would that be?
I think I'll just stop photographing for a couple of months until I get the desire back.


Edited on Nov 19, 2012 at 11:05 AM · View previous versions



Nov 19, 2012 at 10:55 AM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



S Dilworth
Offline
• •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #11 · p.3 #11 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Tod Papageorge once said, "If your pictures are not good enough, you aren’t reading enough." Perhaps this applies to ruts too.

If so, you should read Jörg M Colberg's brilliant blogs Conscientious and Conscientious Extended. They showcase interesting photographs and discuss the nature of photography generally.

Colberg isn't a native English speaker, and I think this limitation forces him to concentrate on substance rather than sophistry (although his English is superb). His blogs talk about art, but they're very accessible.

Which brings me to another point: limitations are essential. Interesting work isn't produced by being cosy and comfortable. You have to really stretch yourself if the world doesn't do that for you. Financial hardship is the traditional route for photographers (and many other artists), but it's not universal: Henri Cartier-Bresson was positively wealthy.

One thing I notice about your posts here, Carsten, is that they're exceptionally logical. You often write a sentence that perfectly cuts to the chase of a matter (recent example). A logical mind is a useful possession for getting ahead in the world on a day-to-day basis, but it sometimes gets in the way of making breakthroughs in art, personal relationships, careers, even mathematics, etc. For that, you need intuitive thinking.

You might find it helpful to try a different style of photography that relies more on intuition than the logical application of technique. I intend to do something similar in my own photography (which is principally characterised by laziness at the moment).



Nov 19, 2012 at 10:55 AM
Exdsc
Offline
• •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #12 · p.3 #12 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Maybe photography is not for you.

One should never discount that possibility.




Nov 19, 2012 at 11:02 AM
mortyb
Offline
• • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #13 · p.3 #13 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Great discussion.

As I've said before, it's a good thing to ask yourself the fundamental questions about photography as a hobby and trying to answer those questions honestly.

Personally I think photography can only be so much. It's sort of limited what you really can achieve. A really nice shot is really nice, but that's also what it is. It's a shot. You can put it on the wall. You can post it on the web. Make a book. Sell it. But it's only a shot. A photograph.

Maybe that's the fundamental issue. We try to squeeze more out of it by getting new lenses, Zeiss look, 3D, clarity, processing, wows and cools. But in the end, it's still only a shot.

I have many hobbies and interests. What gives me satisfaction, is that I can use all I know about photography and what makes a good one - and make some great shots while doing my other hobbies and interests. Kayaking, skiing, mountaineering, mountain biking, portraits of friends etc. I think that is the best I've made from this forum - learning how to get great photographic results by perspective, looks, angles, gear, lenses, processing etc. - but photographic results from my other activities, hobbies and interests.

Carsten, I don't know what other hobbies and interests you have. But maybe it's time to realize that photography is only so much, and start doing other things in your life that gives you something good. And use all you know about photography to make nice shots along the way.



Nov 19, 2012 at 11:25 AM
pingflood
Offline
• • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #14 · p.3 #14 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Count me in as another one who's mostly stuck. I still shoot and get the occasional good image, but really lack inspiration and motivation. Have lots of nice gear available, but little of it gets used. My M3 has had the same roll of film in it for months, the Sinar 4x5 I bought film for a year ago and have yet to even load the holders, I have my "dream" setups of 7D+500L, 1DsII + Zeiss 35/2 and OM-D with the 14/20/45 combo, film scanners for 35 up to 8x10, etc... but nothing seems like fun right now.


Nov 19, 2012 at 11:28 AM
Chrissearle
Offline
• •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #15 · p.3 #15 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


I really don't believe that you can run out of things to photograph. I know that familiarity breeds contempt but it also presents a wonderful challenge. When I'm trapped indoors by the weather I try and find new ways of seeing common objects that surround me. Pulling an interesting image out of mundane situation always fills me with delight! Difficult to do this if you are stuck on producing representational or documentary photographs, although not impossible, but if you focus on things like form and colour, interesting pictures can be found just about anywhere.



Nov 19, 2012 at 12:08 PM
eosfun
Offline
• • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #16 · p.3 #16 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


1. Stop with photography for a while and wait until the hunger for the shutter click comes back
2. Take a course in photography in an area you still want to improve yourself
3. Take part in the assignments here at FM
4. Force yourself to improve your photography to do something that is completely different from what you have done in photography so far. Again our assignments or the presentation boards can be a great source of inspiration.
5. Stop buying gear, talking about gear, posting in the gear boards etc. and go out shooting, back to what you love to shoot the most, to what you do best with your camera and lenses. This is in fact the opposite of recommendation #4, don't force yourself into something new, but go back to your roots, to what made you love photography. Also go back to yourself. Leave the people at the boards here for a while, they obviously do not inspire you at the moment. You need some distance. It has nothing to do with your FM fellows though, it is about finding your individual love for photography. You'll find it back when you are out with the camera.
6. Take some old files and start reprocessing them according to your latest insights and photographic styles. Compare them to your old photos and enjoy how you have improved since then, or enjoy how in fact nothing changed but how good your photography stays over the years, if that is how you feel You can also do this with going back to film and enjoy the magic of the dark room and processing your own film and prints. Do not underestimate the time consuming factor of that. As much as I love the magic of the dark room, every time again I am happy with the progress photography has made by going digital. If you like the filmtrip, enjoy it, but do not expect to find the magic solution for being stuck through the lack of inspiration.
7. If you know for sure that this photography thing is a big disappointment, acknowledge the fact that photography is not for you sell your gear, and start exploring something new. Just take another hobby, don't make the mistake of your photohobby again and think twice how you spend your money.
8. Accept the fact that being uninspired is part of any hobby every now and then. Mostly pressure and overeating yourself into the hobby is a cause of the lack of inspiration. Just take a break, relax and it will come back again after a while. Often after a break you come back at a better level than ever before. If you are like me, and I guess the most of us, you will feel the love for photography deeper than before your inspiration crisis. Just like falling in love with your wife again


Let me say something more, that is not really a way to remotivate, but may help putting things into perspective.

A photo is just a photo, an image that we give a glimpse, enjoy and then put it back and go on with real life. In search of the holy grail of photography we are often disappointed to find out that this is the truth. I have a friend, a star chef and owner of a great restaurant here in the Netherlands, who is passionated about cooking. Once he was in an inspiration crisis and complained about the fact that the art of cooking and eating did not last for long. After the people had eaten his fine art dinners it was gone. That idea, the idea that it didn't last like a painting, or a photo, or a statue, was very frustrating to him. Once he accepted the fact that it was the "user experience" that was part of the art, he got his inspiration back. He enjoyed the fact that people love his food and his "plate art" and eat it and he was happy again to stretch himself to bring new creations in his restaurant. I guess this is the same for photography. The joy of making the pictures and sharing them with other photographers and viewers is part of the fun we have. Try to have that fun every time you shoot and don't expect too much else. Probably that is the holy grail of photography.

Capture a moment in time and put something of your self in that.

Have fun, all best from EOSfun



Nov 19, 2012 at 12:37 PM
sandycrane
Offline
• • •
Upload & Sell: On
p.3 #17 · p.3 #17 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


DP2M.


Nov 19, 2012 at 12:47 PM
trenchmonkey
Offline
• • • • • • •
Upload & Sell: On
p.3 #18 · p.3 #18 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


I'm a lot like my 4X4's...we don't get stuck.


Nov 19, 2012 at 12:55 PM
ukkisavosta
Offline
• •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #19 · p.3 #19 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?


Well, that's a great post from eosfun. Photography should feel fun and rewarding, not laborious - especially for us, to whom photography is just a hobby.

Don't get me wrong, I love the occasional challenge, but what fun is a hobby which just makes you feel all stressed out and tired?

Edit: I should also mention that I consider forums an integral part of my photography hobby. It is very inspiring to read the posts and look at the images, even if I haven't created an image myself for a couple of weeks even.

Jaakko

Edited on Nov 19, 2012 at 01:08 PM · View previous versions



Nov 19, 2012 at 12:55 PM
LightShow
Offline
• • • • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.3 #20 · p.3 #20 · Getting Unstuck - How do you re-motivate yourself?



Lightshow wrote:
I've had a multidirectional life, too many interests, too little time, and the results are predictable,
try and go forwards, backwards, left, & right at the same time....
You go no where!
Spend a week doing like tasks, processing/learning programs one week, test lenses and film another week etc...

I sense a bit of obsessive compulsive tendencies in sweating the details
re: which paper is better, which lens, which program, which system etc...etc...etc... Stop it
Seriously you get far more enjoyment out of it if you don't sweat the small stuff, focus on the craft, not the tools.


carstenw wrote:
I don't know why you say "a bit", when I clearly have "a lot"

I was being kind

I am fanatical about finishing things I start. I don't mean finishing shooting HDRs or whatever, just not leaving things half-done. The more half-done things in my life, the less I can concentrate well on things I am doing. I need to work on the backlog
I hate not getting to finish what I start.



Nov 19, 2012 at 01:05 PM
1       2      
3
       4              8       9       end




FM Forums | Alternative Gear & Lenses | Join Upload & Sell

1       2      
3
       4              8       9       end
    
 

You are not logged in. Login or Register

Username   Password    Reset password