Beating Creative Block in Professional Photography
Creativity is one of the most important skills for a professional photographer. You have to think of new ideas and come up with fresh, exciting ideas on demand. It’s not always easy, though. Sometimes you can find yourself stuck in a creative rut and unable to produce anything original. This is commonly known as “creative block”, and it can be incredibly frustrating.
In this post, we'll look at some ways that you can beat creative block as a professional photographer so you can get back to creating amazing images again.
Hold a Creative Workshop
If you’re finding it hard to break out of a creative rut, it could be because your brain is too focused on the outcome. If you’re thinking too much about what your final product will be, you may feel too much pressure to create something “good”. Instead of focusing on the final product, why not hold a creative workshop to try and generate some new ideas?
This will allow you to focus on the process rather than the outcome of the session, hopefully helping you to break out of your creative rut. It’s also a really fun activity to do with other photographers or creatives in your city. You might even learn some new techniques from your fellow artists. If you’re planning on hosting a workshop, styled shoot, or other education event don’t forget to apply to the Pro Prints Educator Program.
Take a Photography Class
Another way to switch your focus from the outcome to the process is to take a photography class. This can be a great way to learn new skills from an experienced photographer in a fun and social environment. It will also give you some focus and direction on what to learn, which can be helpful if you’re feeling a little directionless.
Not only will this help you to get out of your rut, but it will also give you the opportunity to meet other like-minded creatives and exchange ideas. You could even turn this into a regular thing and create a photography meet-up in your city where you and other photographers can share ideas and knowledge.
Do Some Photoshoots Just For Fun
Sometimes the best way to get out of a creative rut is to forget about your client work for a while and do something for fun. Create some images that aren’t for your business and don’t have to adhere to any commercial standards. You can even turn this into a challenge with some fellow photographers and try to create the most ridiculous images possible.
Focusing purely on having fun and enjoying the process rather than aiming for something commercial can help to get your creative juices flowing again and take your mind off that creative rut you’ve been stuck in. Plus, you can use these images to experiment with different techniques and styles, which can help re-spark your creativity in the long run.
Often, the main goal of these shoots is just to have fun and break out of your normal workflow and creative habits, but you’ll also have some new images to add to your portfolio, which will help boost your confidence and show potential clients that you are capable of capturing high-quality images.
Experiment with Different Techniques
Another way to get out of your creative rut is to experiment with different techniques. This could be something as simple as using a different type of camera or lens, or it could be as drastic as creating a different type of image than the ones you’re used to. For example, if you’re normally a landscape photographer, try shooting portraits for a bit. Or, if you’re normally a portrait photographer, try shooting landscapes.
Experimenting with different techniques and styles can help you to break out of your creative rut and also give you a chance to try something new and different. This can also be a good time to try out any new gear you’ve been wanting to test, which can be fun and helpful and may just open your eyes up to a new tool for your photography.
Change Up Your Environment
Another way to change your focus when you find yourself stuck in a rut is to change your environment. This could be as simple as changing where you usually work, or it could be as drastic as changing countries. Changing your environment can help you to get new ideas and inspiration, and it can also help to put you in a different mindset.
Perhaps you’ve been shooting in the same location for too long, and your images are beginning to look too similar. Or maybe you’ve been working from your studio for too long and feel like you need to head back into the studio. Either way, travel is a great source of inspiration for most photographers and will probably help you as well.
Look At The Work of Photographers You Admire
If you find yourself having trouble coming up with new ideas, look at the work of other photographers who you admire and see what inspires you. You can visit art galleries, go to photography exhibitions, or check out some photography books or magazines.
You can also follow photographers whose work you like on social media, or even on Instagram or Pinterest. You can look at their work and see if there are any images that inspire you or help you come up with new ideas. Maybe you can even collaborate with a photographer whose work you admire and create some images together.
Over on the Pro Prints Instagram a new professional photographer is showcased each week through the Featured PRO Program. From portrait to wedding to newborn a wide range of photography styles can be found. This is a great place to look when you’re interested in finding new photographers to follow on social media.
Learn Some New Editing Tricks
A lot of times when photographers hit a creative block, it’s because they’re stuck in a rut with their editing style. Try learning a new editing technique that you’ve never tried before and see if it helps you come up with new ideas. You can learn new editing tricks by visiting tutorials online, or you can sign up for an online course.
Learning new editing tricks is also a great way to stay up to date with the latest editing technology and stay relevant in your industry. You may find that learning a new editing technique will completely change your workflow and spark some new ideas for images.
Try Something New
Finally, one of the best ways to snap out of a creative block is to try something new. This could be as simple as trying a new camera or lens for a while, or it could be as drastic as changing your photography style or genre entirely.
Trying something new can help to get your creative juices flowing again and give you new ideas and inspiration. Plus, you might even stumble onto something you really like, which can be exciting, and whenever you're excited about something, your creative mind goes into overdrive.
Creativity is a crucial skill for all photographers, but sometimes it can be challenging to come up with new and fresh ideas. When you find yourself in a creative rut, it can be helpful to try some of these techniques to help get your mind back in the game.
From holding workshops to experimenting with new techniques, there are many ways you can beat creative block and start shooting amazing photos again. But remember, sometimes, it’s simply the luck of the draw, and you just have to wait for a good idea to come to you. As frustrating as that can be, it’s a normal part of being a professional photographer.