Three steps to develop your creative photography process.

There is magic in the process of making photographs. For me, it is a way to express beauty, time, and other emotions and feelings that I can’t put into words.

For me, a successful image is not necessarily about accuracy and representation, but much more to do with a personal response and interpretation.

I’m interested in taking photographs that express how I see what is in front of me, photographs that show you how I feel when I see something.

It is a way of expressing who I am. In taking a photograph, I can capture a moment in time in a way that shows how I saw it,  and then I share that unique vision with others.

Pentax 50mm 1.5

Ask yourself – Why do I photograph? What am I trying to say? What is important to me?
Once you know where your interest lies, you will be in a better position to sharpen the way you observe and see more of what speaks to you.

1. Learn to see

Because we are so familiar with our everyday surroundings, we often fail to appreciate their beauty or take them for granted. We need to learn to see the world as if we are looking at it for the very first time.

Whenever you on a photo-shoot, look at the world around you, as a combination of form, colour and light.
Instead of looking for things, start looking for lines, textures, contrast, pattern.

By focusing on visual elements in place of the object itself, we can learn to take an abstract view and see it as more than a mere object.

When you photograph, ask yourself if there is another way you could express the subject. Sometimes, the slightest change in position or a change in camera controls can turn a photograph into something special.

person in the ocean

2. Know your camera

It is important that we become completely familiar with our camera and lenses, and practice the technical aspects of photography so their will become a second nature to us and we are no longer have to concentrate on them. Then we can become free to create our images, using our camera and lenses as an extension of our mind and our eyes.

So if you still not sure where to find things in the menu and how to adjust the settings and use the dials and buttons without even looking, then you need to dedicate some times to master your tool.

To create art that really works we need to become completely absorbed in our subject matter, and we can’t do this if we are anxious about whether we are doing the right thing with our equipment.

birds on the beach

3. Develop your creativity

We each have a highly unique perception of the world around us, seeing it through the lens of past experiences, present beliefs, and learned responses. We don’t just use our cameras to make an image; we use every part of ourselves to envision and create it. Vision is the intent behind the photograph. It is what leads us to frame an image in a certain way, choose a certain lens over another, or photograph from one angle or another. Without that intent we are left with accidental photography.
Before we create an image we need to understand what we want to say, and how we want to say it.

Tones of Joy by Eva Polak

Whatever your goal is as an artist, go after it with passion and persistence. Remember, the creation and appreciation of art is a personal and subjective process. You are free to photograph the world as you see it. Through trial and error your confidence will build, and your photographs will reflect that. Never be afraid to trust your own instincts, fantasies, visions, or dreams. After all, the possibilities for artistic expression through photography are limitless.