Surviving a Photography Funk with Jen Golay

So you and your camera have hit a rough patch in your relationship.  The fire you first felt for photography has cooled, and you’re feeling uninspired.  That’s a sure sign you NEED to pick up your camera and start shooting. Load up a roll of film or if you’re a digital shooter, pinky swear that you’ll only shoot 36 frames and DO NOT delete any while you’re doing it.  But you’re uninspired.  What are you going to shoot?!  Here are a couple of ideas to get you out the door and pushing that button and falling in love with photography all over again.

1.  Play tourists in your home town.  Even if you’ve seen the sights a million times, pretend it’s the first time.  What would you want to remember?  What would you want to show someone who’s never been here?

2.  Be really brave and photograph strangers.  Find people who interest you, tell them you’re doing a project and ask if you can take their picture.  Nine times out of ten, they’ll be flattered and say yes!  Or just shoot street photography and catch people unawares.

3.  Photograph the details of you home/life.  If Better Homes and Gardens decided to feature your house in its next issue, what would they photograph?

4.  Evidence.  I work from home, and I don’t live with a bunch of neat freaks.  After everyone has left for the day, I can wander around the house and find “evidence of us”—notebooks lying on the coffee table, laptops left open, stacks of books on the floor.

5.  Try something new like star trails or long exposures.  Just be sure you have a tripod and a cable release or a timer.

6.  Buy yourself some flowers and photograph them from every angle.

7. Give yourself an assignment.  For example, photograph only reflections, only interesting doors, only bicycles.

All of these images were made during a photography funk.  Don’t wait until you’re in the mood.  Just get out there and push the button.  You’ll be surprised at what you create!

What do you do to get out of a photography funk?