What do a dry lake bed, a dead fish, a spaceman, and some smoke have in common? Today’s lesson on The Slanted Lens! We’re discussing some tips to help you produce more creative and unique work!
The Creative Process
The creative process is not a destination where you know exactly where you’re going. It’s more like floating down a river. As photographers we have to accept the stream and the current and some of the things that life gives us, and make it into a great image.
Producing Creative Images
People ask me all the time how I come up with the ideas we shoot. You know, a lot of the times, it’s like pulling things out of a bag. We had this spacesuit from another shot we did, and we used the colored smoke grenades for a shoot with Abraham Lincoln at Gettysburg. In the end I just throw things together and they tend to work out.
The initial idea for this shoot came to me pretty easily. We were already headed out to the Salton Sea to do an interview and I thought, “Hey. We’re going down to Bombay Beach. It’s kind of weird down there, and so we’re just gonna try doing some shots with the Spaceman.” It’s just a matter of using what you’ve got and making something out of it.
Rolling with the Punches
This does not, however, mean that there are no hiccups in the process. We headed out to Bombay Beach for this shoot with the Spaceman because we heard it was an interesting location to shoot at. We expected to find colored pools to incorporate into our shots, but when we got there, we found they had all dried up!
At this point in your creative process, you can give up. We certainly could have! But rather than give up I would suggest rolling with the punches and seeing what you can get with what you do have! In the case of the Spaceman, we chose to use some calcified wooden pillars to make something happen, and as the sun went down, we started to get some really interesting shots.
The Basics of Creativity
So the most important tip I can give you is to keep trying. Look at new angles, look at new settings, and shoot things that interest you. If you do these things you will create shots that are truly one of a kind!
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Keep those cameras rollin’ and keep on clickin’!