January: Inspiration: Change\ exchange
Inspiration is exactly like water: let it lie stagnant and it rots. Various forms, just like water can become ice, steam, a running stream, creativity can come from the weirdest places, in the strangest forms. So, my advice is: open your mind to a new form of inspiration.
So, when lacking in inspiration, remember to change and exchange! Change mediums, forms, ideas, do new things!
For example: I do love music; classical, electro, traditional of many countries, the list goes on and on. However, some forms I have never completely warmed to. My two daughters are huge fans of the step-up movie and I’m forced, time and time again, to go and watch it. The point is, even though I can not call myself a fan, I never walk out without being inspired. Watching great, choreographed dances, in any form, never, ever fails to inspire me. So, something nobody but my beloved babies would have ever gotten me to do, has had a huge effect in my work (I can not believe I’m admitting this).
Or standing next to a netball field when I could have done better things, reminds me of wind and the winter sun through green leaves and laughter. Playing with my sisters one year old reminds me how perfect an individual can be.
It seems that out of our stupid, internal snobbishness to do just “some things”, comes stagnancy. There is hope, however, just like rain, you can get the creative juices running again. So, if you are normally a painter, perhaps walk around with a camera in hand, if you are normally a photographer, try singing or dancing, if you are a dancer, perhaps try nature or something similarly unconstrained or less controlled.
Or perhaps, in stead of doing something different, do your art form different. Here is a few things you can try specifically for photography:
- Beautiful, old fashioned, manual film. In stead of rushed, fast producing digital, try aiming slowly, counting each shot. Thinking deliberately knowing that every shot counts and will cost you money (as film development does).
- Pin hole: fun, fun, fun! Remember that contend does count! A lot! But even the plainest things, like a watermelon can be perfect content. (I must be hungry)
- Large format printing. It never ceases to amaze me, how unbelievably different an image can look if really small, or really large. It is as if when the image gets stretched through the enlarger, something spooky changes, and suddenly the open spaces in the photo becomes further proportionally from objects as was before.
- Watch another photographer work (without judgement!) and the smallest things can inspire, perhaps just his way of working with a model.
- Change what you photograph, for example, if you normally shoot with models, try a few portraits of extra-ordinary people, or if you normally do landscapes, exchange it for action.
- Use other creative people, with wonderful creative energy, to boost your spirits. I’m often inspired my makeup artists, hairstylists or stylists, people I often work with. Here is a photo that I really love. The makeup artists (AnonaMiss Beauty Emporuim) and hairstylist (Ermine Hair)
For my part, I’m starting with a series of portraits, which I’ll share with you later.