The Ebb and Flow:::Photography Inspiration

Inspiration ebbs and flows. Sometimes the tide is strong, ideas churning in my mind constantly. Other times, I feel like I’m floating in a tide pool. There are probably really interesting things floating around me, but I’m just floating, feeling stuck, cut off from the waves of inspiration that lie just out of reach.

I was expressing my frustration with my lack of inspiration and creativity to Todd the other night. His response (since he’s an artist, I suppose he gets the whole not-so-inspired-sometimes feeling) was to look at different photographer’s pictures, branch out from the same old same blogs I follow day in day out, get inspired by something new.

Well, we all know I don’t take instruction as well as I should, so I haven’t done that yet. However, I heard him, and I think he’s right. I need to look at some new styles of photography, some pictures that aren’t the norm. So, in beginning my quest for inspiration, I compromised. I looked in the same places I look every day, the blogs on my favorites list, and I searched for photos that just grabbed me, that made me stop and think, Huh. I haven’t seen that pose before. or, That photo actually makes me a little uncomfortable, in good way, in a way that moves something in me.

I don’t want to be a cookie cutter photographer. That’s too easy. I could copy the styles, poses, lighting, processing of all the greats out there. Or, I could just be me, follow my instincts, compose the way want and edit how I like. I still struggle with worrying that my clients won’t like their photos, that they will be too artsy, or processed differently than they wanted, or just not “right.” I know the truth, I know that if I define my own style, provide a unique product, I will draw in the right clientele. But that doesn’t make it any less scary or any less of a struggle to just put my “style” out there, for people to love or hate.

So, I will draw inspiration from other photographers, and continue to push my own photography into new realms, challenging places, and hopefully see the reward.

This lighting in this first photo is gorgeous. Funny thing is, if I was editing it, I probably would have reduced the warmth (made it cooler/less yellow color), but you know…I think this photo is exactly perfect as is. The color is inviting and the warmth actually makes the dress stand out more.

Photo by LindseyBelle

Blurry photos sometimes really grab me. It’s so tempting to over sharpen every photo, and to get frustrated when I shook the camera and missed that crisp, clean shot. But then I see a photo like this, and I realize that sometimes, a little bit of blur is just what you need. I can feel the laugh in this photo, taste that happiness. A crisp photo just wouldn’t have communicated the feeling in the same way.

Photo by AmeliaLyon

Creativity. Oh man, do Nate and Jaclyn at The Image is Found have it in spades. The people in this photo are ambiguous, anonymous, unseen. But they are there. You have to look at the details, at the outfits, at the hands. And it’s just so darn creative! Flowers in front of faces…pfft…brilliant.

Photo by The Image Is Found

Unposed perfection. Who knows, maybe these were poses, but they have that voyeuristic feel, like the woman in the photos doesn’t know anyone is watching. There is raw emotion oozing from this photo, even though the woman isn’t making eye contact with the camera, or anyone for that matter. That idea of a private moment, where no one is watching, comes through in a powerful way.

Photo by Feather Love Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

The next two photos are just fun and oh-so-unique. The first one is an UP! themed engagement shoot. Does it get any cuter than that? But the theme aside, the composition is what made me shiver when I saw this photo. It’s symetrical, but not, posed but perfectly unposed.The colors, positioning…you name it, I love it.

Photo by Wildflowers Photography via The Wedding Chicks

Think about how this shot probably happened…Photographer: Hey, go stand inside that ice cream shop. Oh, and grab a spoon. Now look through the window at me. More space between each other…don’t touch…there you go. Now stop smiling, be serious. Hold that spoon up, higher. There, perfect.

No kiss, no embrace, no loving look or nuzzling touch. And yet they are a couple, they are one, they are complete. Again, perfection.

Photo by JMM Photography via Style Me Pretty

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