In any creative endeavor it’s normal to have periods when you lose the enthusiasm and excitement for the hobby you usually love. Film photography is no different. Perhaps you find yourself going to the same places all the time and shooting the same subjects without doing anything new. Or perhaps you’re not picking up your camera at all, feeling that you’re no longer learning anything new or that nothing interesting will result from the effort.
If this sounds familiar we’re here to help with some tips to shake the cobwebs away and get your imaginations back up and running.
Look For Inspiration in Art
Consuming artwork by others is always a great way to kickstart your own imagination. Photobooks are a perfect starting point and provide a different experience to viewing photography online. In books we tend to linger over the images longer, and view them more thoughtfully than we would if we were just scrolling through instagram.
Visiting art galleries and watching films can also influence us enormously and help to build a library of visual references outside of photography to draw inspiration from.
And even non-visual artforms can be incredibly effective in sparking new ideas. Listening to music and reading novels can imbed an atmosphere or frame of mind that we then feel excited to capture in photography.
Try Using a New Piece of Gear
Have you only ever shot film with a standard SLR or rangefinder? Maybe pick up something fun like a point-and-shoot, a fish-eye, or an instant camera and see how it transforms not only your photos but your whole creative approach.
But don’t worry, we’re not suggesting you need to go out and buy a new camera every time you feel a lack of motivation. Even the smallest change can make a huge difference. Try something as simple as a new filter or a shutter release cable and experiment with the new range of options it gives you.
Of course the easiest way to shake things up and transform your photography is by trying out a roll of film you’ve never shot before. If you’re used to shooting color negative film, try using a black and white film, or one of our color-shifting LomoChrome films.
One of the best ways to find inspiration is simply to explore a new place. When you’re traveling suddenly everything is a subject worthy of photographing. We know you’re probably daydreaming about stunning waterfalls of Iceland, or the beautiful colonial architecture of Cuba, or one of many other dream destinations for photographers, but new and exciting locations can also be found close to home.
Micro-adventures are a perfect way to inject some novelty into your photographic pursuits without traveling halfway around the world. You’ll be surprised by the places you find on a daytrip away from your own doorstep.
Get Involved in the Analogue Community
Film photography can be as sociable or as solitary as you make it and for some people the quiet, individual approach of film photography is part of the appeal. But we find that too much isolation tends to lead to creative stagnation.
Connecting with other analogue enthusiasts and inspiring each other is one of the most rewarding aspects of our community. Taking part in a film swap is a wonderful way to experiment and collaborate to create images you could never have dreamed up alone. So check our calendar for upcoming events and get involved. And of course join Lomography’s growing online community and share your photos on your LomoHomes!
How do you keep yourself inspired through times of low motivation? Let us know in the comments!