1. Quit comparing yourself to others. One of the quickest ways to get uninspired is to hold yourself to someone else's standards. There is a difference between seeing and recognizing that you are different from other artists and seeing and recognizing they are better than you. One of those creates inspiration. The other creates a lack of confidence.
2. Get off Facebook and technology. Facebook can drain our artistic souls. I used to follow every….good...photographer out there. I would see something amazing and think to myself “Man, I wish my work looked like that” two posts later see work totally opposite and think “Man, I wish my work looked like that” I lost sight of what I really even wanted from my work. Make sure that you are only surrounding yourself with inspiration. If a photographer you follow doesn’t inspire you to be a better artist in any way, unfollow them. Give yourself a complete Facebook detox.
It is not just unfollowing people, it is also putting the phone down. When was the last time you sat down to do something relaxing or fun and didn’t have your phone, computer, iPad, or TV? While those things can all be relaxing, you are allowing less time for your mind to create ideas of your own.
3. Find art outside of photography that inspires you. Visit a museum, see a concert, read classic literature, watch a play… enjoy the art around you. There can be so much inspiration found in other forms of art. By finding inspiration from another medium, you allow yourself to recharge and truly discover your source of inspiration and the things that make you light up inside!
4. Get outside of your comfort zone - shoot things you don’t specialize in or don’t really shoot, shoot film, photograph a stranger. Nothing will keep you in a creative rut like doing the same thing over and over. Try something way outside of your comfort zone. That could be shooting film, asking to photograph a stranger, shooting a session outside of your niche or all of the above!
For me personally, shooting film is very therapeutic. You have to fully plan each shot so carefully because you are limited with how many frames you can take. It also brings in a whole new appreciation for photography as an art farm vs. post processing as an art form.
5. Don’t procrastinate your sessions - the longer your prolong them the higher expectations you have or you lose interest. Plan a shoot and do it as soon as possible - not in 3 or 4 weeks. The longer you wait to shoot your session, the less enthusiasm and motivation you have. Come up with a killer shoot idea, find a model or grab a friend and shoot it within days. Sometimes just creating something fun for yourself and not a client can recharge your creative energy so quickly.
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