Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Writer's Block for Photographers

boise river winter scene
If you're serious about taking, or making, photos, something you'll likely suffer some day is a complete and utter lack of inspiration.  We'll call it photographer's block.  If you you're also a writer, wow, you get to have the other block too!  Sometimes you even get to have both at the same time.

That can lead to depression.  To insecurity.  To pessimism.  To fights with the spouse. Shoot, maybe it leads to toe fungus too.  It sucks.

It can sometimes seem like you're in a negative feedback loop - the longer it continues the harder it is to do anything about it.

So what do writers do?

They might simply go back and visit some of their old work.  When you find and re-read that well-turned phrase that brought a warm glow to your cockles a while ago, it's bound to cheer you up at least a little and remind you of that genius within struggling to get out. So try taking a look at some of your old photos.  You have put some on the wall haven't you?

Maybe you need a change of scenery.  Or maybe you just need to sit down and start typing.  Sort of reminds me about the old joke about the constipated mathematician - we all know what he did.  Perhaps there's a grain of wisdom in that joke!

Another action that I believe can really help is just do a web search and see what comes up.  I did that yesterday and quickly found enough to get my out of the doldrums.  I discovered a site run by James Beltz called "Picture Defense".  It gives very clear, concise and easy to implement information on what to do when you discover one of your pictures on the web in a place you didn't want it to be.  You know what I mean:  you were ripped off.  This is a godsend to me because I have had this happen a number of times and I suspect it is happening right now.  In any case, this is a site that you will want to bookmark immediately, especially if you post your images on the web, which pretty much includes everyone doesn't it?

So what does this have to do with writer's block?  Well, besides getting enthused by a photo related story, I followed a link back to one of Jim's other sites: "Phototips".   I then clicked on his "Tutorials" link et voilá, number five on the resulting list was "Overcoming Photographer's Block".  This guy is busy, knows his stuff, and is fun to read so you'll probably want to bookmark these pages too.

So before it got dark and any colder than it already was, I suited up, got my gear ready and took a walk down to the river.  That's what the picture above is all about - I worked it out with a camera!

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