Home » Stop Shooting, Start Thinking

I’ve been coming up with a lot of new concepts over the past few weeks and as excited as I am to go out and shoot them, I decided that it would be in my best interests to do the complete opposite. This is because I don’t want to start shooting any random image that springs to mind; I want to create image that are both considered and I want to make sure that the images fit into the themes I explore through my photography.

Also, as I have a lot of different images floating around my mind, I was unsure of which image to shoot first and how I should go about deciding upon which idea would fit, both visually and aesthetically with the images I have already shot. The last thing I want to do is to shoot an image that is practically the same as the last one I shot. By considering what to shoot next, it means that when my images are placed side by side in chronological order, they will all differ but retain similar qualities and attributes. To figure out what to shoot next, I decided to analyze my work:


As you can see, I have made comparison between my images and wrote down key words that describe what I see within my work. By doing this, i have came to the conclusions that I need to shoot images at a more of a ¾ angle as well as use a range of camera angles. I feel that by doing this, it will really diversify my work.

I also decided to type up a small statement about my work and what it means to me as the creator. I feel that this was something that was long overdue. I’ve been shooting a lot without thinking about what I am saying with my work. Now that I know exactly what my work means, I can start tailoring my ideas towards my themes and making them more polished. As well as considering the themes within my work, I’m also trying to create my own visual style, more within editing and through colour choice. My work is influenced heavily by cinematography and cinematic grading but I feel that the ‘colour palette’ for my work is still a work in progress. The only thing I can really see in my work at the minute is that I shoot and use a lot of blue clothes in my images. This is actually something I like as I feel that my work is both blue in colour and in mood, so it works.

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Looking at your work as a collection and making notes on how they fit together is something that I would recommend to all photographers and creative to do. What better way for you to define your work by looking at the actual work itself in context with one another. I’d also suggest that you should really think about what your work is saying and how you can make it distinguishable from others. You don’t have to be fully original (I don’t believe originality exists) but you should want people to recognize your work when they come across it.

A great way to do this is to think of a photographer that you like. Picture their work in your mind and write down all of the associations you apply to that photographer. Now think about your own work. What associations do you want other people to make with your work? Write down a list of associations and then look at your work collectively. Do your work and your associations match? If they don’t, how can you change your work so that they do fit together? If they do fit together, think about how you can build upon your associations so that you can create new and exciting images.

Once you figure out what themes are within your work, you can then go out and shoot, knowing that your images fit together cohesively and collectively. That way, when someone asks you what makes your work different from other photographer’s, you can confidently tell them exactly what makes you different.

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