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Keeping Photography Fun -- How do YOU do it? What do you shoot?

58 posts in this topic

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Whenever I feel like I haven't made a picture that's thrilled me in a while, I ask myself: Am I controlling my images too much? Am I being way too technical? Am I forgetting to inject into my client work a good dose of my creative side? Have I shot for myself lately? Is this fun? :)

The other day I did a shoot purely for the fun. No pressure to succeed (well, maybe there was a little of that, haha). The process itself was refreshing and invigorating, no matter the results.

[img]http://ilovephotography.com/wndersona1.jpg[/img]

How do [b]you[/b] keep photography interesting and fun? Do you shoot outside of the people category? Street photography, scenics, macro closeups? Self portraits? Care to show some of your non-portrait work?

So tell me, show me, how do you do it? :)

--Eddie.
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I quit shooting for money. :)
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Ditto Kari - though slightly differently...
I only shoot professionally for those I like :D
otherwise - just for me...
My design business & photo library brings in the income

Alasdair
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LOL Kari! Seriously. I just got back from Thailand and have never felt more inspired shooting. I am sad for all of the photos I didn't take, for once. Three years ago in Ireland, I barely took out my camera. Last year in Amsterdam, I did ok and took more photos... but Thailand? Oh dear - the colors, the people, the textures, the dogs... so much to see and do. I want to be a travel photographer - for me. :rofl: I don't know how that could pay the bills but I just need to find someone to finance my adventures - LOL. :)

[img]http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/420549_10150591527361279_617951278_9193126_1387583914_n.jpg[/img]
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Like Kari, I don't do it for money (much).

I focus mainly on my art photography these days and I only take a handful of paid clients.

Holgas may be frustrating as all get out but they are never boring and always fun :)

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I have a concept diary, I regularly write down things I want to shoot, and then I plan them out. I have one next weekend I'm really excited about. It is a family shoot but every detail is planned out.

I also, just go street walking when I can, look for different angles, viewpoints, and shoot from the hip. Travel is the best, it is what I enjoy the most, but I'm sure that is because it is for enjoyment and for me and no one else.
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I only photograph friends and family:)

And even if they don't want their picture taken, I laugh at the outtakes...

[attachment=985420:web2-3630.jpg]

And when I get a photo that I just love, it's totally worth it!

[attachment=985421:web2-3732.jpg]

Thanks for posting this, Eddie. As much as I've been buried in the prepro "rules" lately, this is a good reminder to keep it fun.
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For me, it's about shooting with others and being inspired by their vision and examples. We have an amazing community on ILP and knowing/working with other photographers has really been the highlight of being a photographer for me.

I also take the time to do 1-2 conceptual shoots a month. Find a model and do a TFP situation where I can set up everything myself.
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It remains fun for me because I shoot for myself all of the time. It is how I clear all of the ideas out of my head. I think that is why it is always fun for me. I love connecting with people, and I love styling shoots, and I love the rush. I keep it fun by shooting 2 times a month, just my concepts, just for me.

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The 52 week project I am doing this year has kept things fun and fresh. Not only getting to shoot the theme each week, but seeing the ideas of others in the group and their take on the theme as well.

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Jeni beat me to it :)

I'm doing the weekly photo challenge this year, having done 52 photos last year and the 365 project the year before that.

I don't take it too seriously and don't worry if I don't achieve technical perfection, but I experiment and mess around with ideas. Or just do snapshots sometimes.

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I love this thread: Mess around with a model in studio on TFP basis. Shoot landscapes and street photographs on holiday. Actually shooting for clients is quite stressful :) a buzz, but stressful

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When I stopped doing every type of photography to get business. When I started out, I took pictures of baseball games, portrait parties, architecture, real estate, .and the list goes on. About 3 years ago, I started saying no and began only doing shoots that I knew I would enjoy and because I am doing what I love, my work is better for it :)
I stopped comparing my work to others.
I am constantly writing down ideas and half of the time executing it :P
I am always trying to push myself creatively and technically so I don't get bored and am always challenged.
I take small breaks from my camera so I can get rejuvenated.
Honestly, my personal work and my business work is so much fun now because of the above. :)
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Getting the guts to say "I do not shoot weddings". That was VERY hard to do. Crazy, but true.

But, other than that, I still need some help sometimes. I don't shoot nearly as much for fun as I used to. I have lots of grand plans to join in all kinds of photo projects, but most of the time, I never participate.

I am hoping it is just a late winter slump. I am sure some warmer weather and some sign of greenery will re-energize me!

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"Fun" for me is shooting for no reason or without a specific purpose. It's meeting a group of friends at the local conservatory or in the city with cameras in had, learning from each other, pushing the limits of our knowledge, and being around people who understand what I'm talking about and why this hobby makes me happy. It's about taking a shot like this and having people tell me why they like it. I knew I liked, but didn't really understand why I did. I still don't. I'm not sure it's technically correct. I'm almost positive it's not, but it doesn't matter. [b]"I"[/b] like it! Through this hobby, I'm learning that art is subjective and that makes me happy!

[img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7195/6951826933_5c520a1aa8_z.jpg[/img]
.
I am finding that macro photography is fun. It would probably be more fun if I had a real macro lens, but that will come, in time. Flowers and bugs and such stand still, they don't complain about heat or the cold or get tired of me! They make learning fun because they are cooperative subjects!
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I always try and give myself a day or two after my "real work" to shoot for me. Once I have the shots of the lodges, the people smiling, and all of the un-fun stuff I try and get out and shoot for myself. The locations are usually so beautiful and filled with amazing things to shoot so I try and take the time while I am already there.

In Costa Rica for example I had to shoot birds and snakes *shudder* which are really not my thing. I get board quickly with them unless they are hummingbirds which I do enjoy with multi-flash. I photographed birds and snakes for four solid ten hour days. The next two days I spent shooting monkeys, waterfalls, and red eyed tree frogs which I love.

Here are a few of the things I loved shooting while there. :)


[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6796366384/"][img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7066/6796366384_daccf3542a.jpg[/img][/url]
[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6796366384/"]Costa Rica[/url] by [url="http://www.flickr.com/people/rmsteckphotography/"]RMSteck Photography[/url], on Flickr


[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6472221553/"][img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7162/6472221553_85d2a82df2.jpg[/img][/url]
[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6472221553/"]Costa Rica 8[/url] by [url="http://www.flickr.com/people/rmsteckphotography/"]RMSteck Photography[/url], on Flickr


[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6829880033/"][img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7026/6829880033_b50b692f80.jpg[/img][/url]
[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6829880033/"]Costa Rica[/url] by [url="http://www.flickr.com/people/rmsteckphotography/"]RMSteck Photography[/url], on Flickr
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We try and travel somewhere new every year, just DH and I and leave the kids behind with the grandmas! I love having the camera around my neck at all times and just snapping for ME. Not worrying about the perfect picture or pleasing a client.... just snapping away for ME. I love that my camera can help me capture an image so vividly I can keep the memories so alive and feel like I am there for years after... So much beauty in this world! Here are just a handful of my faves, I have hundreds sitting in folders that I have not looked at in a while! These include a tiny island in the Indian Ocean, Antigua, Greece and Rome...
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Photography became fun for me again when I stopped dealing with people who wanted more for less. I was always chasing a client, the wrong client because I "just wanted to shoot". Then last summer when I was pregnant and it was a difficult pregnancy I stopped photographing others and went back to my own children. It made me love my camera again and I was at it every day. Now I'm back to clients and I am happy. But the right client. I will never again sell myself short.

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Macro is my happy place. It is what I do for "fun" or when photography begins to frustrate me. :)

[img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7047/6957699141_f3b946ee6f_b.jpg[/img]

[img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7210/6957699817_31ff419e55_b.jpg[/img]

But I'm also finding chasing chooks around to be pretty fun too. LOL
[img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7178/6804811806_21cd5bb99c_b.jpg[/img]
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Just call me "Thread Killer"! :tongue:

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haha, Nancy!

Seriously though, really beautiful work! The spider is outrageous. :)

--Eddie.
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I shoot concerts!!!

[img]http://i40.tinypic.com/2mmea1c.jpg[/img]

music was my first love. I was a vocal performance major in college until I switched to psychology. Music has been the BIGGEST part of my life. Add my absolutely love for photography in, and i go to a very happy place every time.

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[quote name='Marinerbaby' timestamp='1330876664' post='5342197']
I always try and give myself a day or two after my "real work" to shoot for me. Once I have the shots of the lodges, the people smiling, and all of the un-fun stuff I try and get out and shoot for myself. The locations are usually so beautiful and filled with amazing things to shoot so I try and take the time while I am already there.

In Costa Rica for example I had to shoot birds and snakes *shudder* which are really not my thing. I get board quickly with them unless they are hummingbirds which I do enjoy with multi-flash. I photographed birds and snakes for four solid ten hour days. The next two days I spent shooting monkeys, waterfalls, and red eyed tree frogs which I love.

Here are a few of the things I loved shooting while there. :)


[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6796366384/"][img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7066/6796366384_daccf3542a.jpg[/img][/url]
[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6796366384/"]Costa Rica[/url] by [url="http://www.flickr.com/people/rmsteckphotography/"]RMSteck Photography[/url], on Flickr


[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6472221553/"][img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7162/6472221553_85d2a82df2.jpg[/img][/url]
[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6472221553/"]Costa Rica 8[/url] by [url="http://www.flickr.com/people/rmsteckphotography/"]RMSteck Photography[/url], on Flickr


[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6829880033/"][img]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7026/6829880033_b50b692f80.jpg[/img][/url]
[url="http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmsteckphotography/6829880033/"]Costa Rica[/url] by [url="http://www.flickr.com/people/rmsteckphotography/"]RMSteck Photography[/url], on Flickr
[/quote]

Ruth, these are amazing! Love the frog!
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Concept shoots! I love being able to design an entire shoot, go all out and plan it out for as long as it may take me and shoot just for me!

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I havent even started for money yet, and already trying to get to that point has sucked out some of the fun for me. I am way to focused on the technical. Tomorrow is my daughter's 6th birthday. I am making it my goal to follow her around like the flippin papparazzi and snap images galore. I will edit to MY liking, not the standard. And all will be well. This is an interesting post because I am already struggling to find the balance so its interesting to see so many pros that struggle or still struggle.

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