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Thread: No Inspiration

  1. #1

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    No Inspiration

    What do you do when you've lost your inspiration? Too many emotional things going on. Nothing seems to work.

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: No Inspiration

    You've already done the most important bit - Acknowledged that there are too many other things interfering with your creativity.

    Set the camera aside and don't force yourself. Do some reading about photography instead. Look at the work of other people. You'll know when you're ready to go out and start making images again.

  3. #3
    jeeperman's Avatar
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Agreed, sometimes time out is what it takes. As you travel to and from not looking at things to find the inspiration it will jump out and grab you, but not until you are ready will it do so. When it does you'll know. I think most if not all of us go through this, many times without other causes even.

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    Re: No Inspiration

    I stared at a blank wall for three days...it wasn't that I couldn't take decent shots, or that I didn't want to; it was more I didn't know what direction I wanted to work toward....and you know what...I came to absolutely no good conclusions, so I picked my camera back up, and shot that which made my heart go all pitter patter...and remembered what my art mentor always said...

    ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK ART IS WORK...and sometimes, it is also GREAT FUN!

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisC View Post
    I stared at a blank wall for three days...
    My problem becomes manifest when I realise I'm driving around in the car, wasting fuel, trying to find something to shoot. Eventually, once I've got totally angry and frustrated, I remember to tell myself that I've been here before and that what I need to do is enjoy my drive around, not look for photographs, then go home and enjoy my day. And remember that I always work better when I've planned my shoot carefully instead of just trying to find pictures. And that's exactly what happened to me last weekend when I ended up with, I think, 4 or 5 that I've posted up over the last couple of days and with which I am very pleased.

    But, I know what this frustration thing will happen again and I'll go through the same stupid scenario all over again, and tell myself I'm hopeless that I can't find inspiration. Maybe it's part of the creative process!

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    Black Pearl's Avatar
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Put aside your SLR and spend a few days with your phone as your only means of taking a picture.

    I find that an escape from shutter speeds, apertures and ISO settings can free my creative spirit and some of my best shots have been those that were grabbed without thinking.

    Try it - it might open your eyes.

  7. #7
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by ilovelucydog View Post
    What do you do when you've lost your inspiration? Too many emotional things going on. Nothing seems to work.
    I watch old, funny movies. Pick up my guitar and play old tunes that I know. Admire other people's work.

  8. #8
    Camellia's Avatar
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by black pearl View Post
    Put aside your SLR and spend a few days with your phone as your only means of taking a picture.

    I find that an escape from shutter speeds, apertures and ISO settings can free my creative spirit and some of my best shots have been those that were grabbed without thinking.

    Try it - it might open your eyes.
    What a good idea Robin.

    I'm in the same boat Mary. I feel I've hit the wall. I don't know where to go. Result = birds and insects in the backyard.

    Maybe it is something that everyone experiences and we just have to see it out?

    R

  9. #9

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    Re: No Inspiration

    Thank you. I think winter has just been too long this year. My husband is working in NYC and VA Beach so he's gone 2 weeks at a time... so that leaves all the snow blowing, shoveling, roof raking to yours truly. And now that we've got anywhere from 4-6ft of snow everywhere I'm on watch to see if water's coming through the basement or the ceiling. My college boy seems to be having a rough time and that makes my heart hurt so for him. And since our house won't sell we're going to go ahead with our move. My mom has cancer. Now I'm just whining and feeling sorry for myself. Time to cowgirl up.

  10. #10

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    Re: No Inspiration

    You'll be fine, Mary...the world will turn another day and you will have coped with it as you have coped with all the ones before...what's the old saying...When life hands you lemons, make lemonade...I think there's a lot of truth to that. Pick something, anything and see what you can do with it...a shot out a window, a dimly lighted stairway, a spinning laundry...I think you will be amazed at all the fun stuff so close to your reach.

  11. #11

    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by ilovelucydog View Post
    Thank you. I think winter has just been too long this year. My husband is working in NYC and VA Beach so he's gone 2 weeks at a time... so that leaves all the snow blowing, shoveling, roof raking to yours truly. And now that we've got anywhere from 4-6ft of snow everywhere I'm on watch to see if water's coming through the basement or the ceiling. My college boy seems to be having a rough time and that makes my heart hurt so for him. And since our house won't sell we're going to go ahead with our move. My mom has cancer. Now I'm just whining and feeling sorry for myself. Time to cowgirl up.
    Oh, Mary..... we should meet for tea and cry on each other's shoulder!

    I have another question. What happens when you hate every photo that you've taken. This is totally weird!

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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Noelle View Post
    Oh, Mary..... we should meet for tea and cry on each other's shoulder!

    I have another question. What happens when you hate every photo that you've taken. This is totally weird!
    I'd say you were moving on...and it is not a bad thing to do. I look at work I thought was outfreakingstanding a year, six months, three months, two weeks ago and realize it is also time for me to start pushing the envelope a bit. I think my motion shots are starting to take me to a new place and while they won't be the end result, they will be one of the transportation devices. It's getting me past making pretty photos... a task most of us on this forum have proven we can deftly attend to.

    I sort of kind of went there a few weeks ago but found I really needed this forum as a listening and telling post. I didn't necessarily need to be told I was good or improving as much as just being allowed the cameraderie of understanding the mechanics of how and why we tick like we do...each of us in our own way. I am waxing a little philosophically, but I think we are all exhibitionists to some extent...goodly so, but there is a great need to have another force in your life, in your art which provides an impetus to do well, to get better, to work harder. For me, CinC is that force and you guys are my in-facto family of presence...it's a wacky place sometimes, but it is so much fun and I do appreciate you all so much.

  13. #13

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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Noelle View Post
    Oh, Mary..... we should meet for tea and cry on each other's shoulder!

    I have another question. What happens when you hate every photo that you've taken. This is totally weird!
    Wouldn't that be nice, to meet for tea? My husband's business partner is the husband of one of my first and only friends here, in NH. I met dawn at Panera Bread in Concord. It was a good meeting place, sort of in the middle. They live/d in Lebanon, NH and we're here on Lake Winnipesaukee. I first met Dawn on a home school forum and we braved a meeting at Panera. The paths of life are sometimes unbelievable if we weren't living it!

  14. #14

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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisC View Post
    I'd say you were moving on...and it is not a bad thing to do. I look at work I thought was outfreakingstanding a year, six months, three months, two weeks ago and realize it is also time for me to start pushing the envelope a bit. I think my motion shots are starting to take me to a new place and while they won't be the end result, they will be one of the transportation devices. It's getting me past making pretty photos... a task most of us on this forum have proven we can deftly attend to.

    You have great advice, Chris. I appreciate all of you here, at CinC a lot.

    I sort of kind of went there a few weeks ago but found I really needed this forum as a listening and telling post. I didn't necessarily need to be told I was good or improving as much as just being allowed the cameraderie of understanding the mechanics of how and why we tick like we do...each of us in our own way. I am waxing a little philosophically, but I think we are all exhibitionists to some extent...goodly so, but there is a great need to have another force in your life, in your art which provides an impetus to do well, to get better, to work harder. For me, CinC is that force and you guys are my in-facto family of presence...it's a wacky place sometimes, but it is so much fun and I do appreciate you all so much.

  15. #15
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Hi Mary,

    I'll gladly share my personal dealings. I may be a novice with a camera but I'm a Pro at losing inspiration!

    There are many reasons why my camera suddenly looks like an expensive weight more than the escape it's meant to be. But the truth is if I really enjoy it then my current lack of inspiration is probably because I need to change perspectives for a little while. Instead of taking the picture, get your picture taken OR put the camera away and enjoy the work of others. It's like music, it's supposed to be therapeutic to me instead of bothersome.

    I will do what Donald suggests and leave the camera behind. Bleh! Leave it! But once I'm tooless, my eyes seem to open. I also may try to critique the work of others in my head and then scroll through the comments to see if I'm observing what others are. Anything to change roles where I'm not the one responsible for the image always leads me back to the hunger, the hunt, and the challenge to impress myself.

    Changing my role from participant to observer brought back the desire to participate. I spent hours on Flickr looking at the work of people like this guy and browsing the forums and it came right back.

    It is a welcome mental refresh because the only other option (that's not an option) is to quit.
    Last edited by Mario Xavier; 2nd March 2011 at 01:00 AM.

  16. #16
    Camellia's Avatar
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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by ilovelucydog View Post
    Thank you. I think winter has just been too long this year. My husband is working in NYC and VA Beach so he's gone 2 weeks at a time... so that leaves all the snow blowing, shoveling, roof raking to yours truly. And now that we've got anywhere from 4-6ft of snow everywhere I'm on watch to see if water's coming through the basement or the ceiling. My college boy seems to be having a rough time and that makes my heart hurt so for him. And since our house won't sell we're going to go ahead with our move. My mom has cancer. Now I'm just whining and feeling sorry for myself. Time to cowgirl up.
    Take care of yourself Mary and keep talking to us! You are not alone.

    R

  17. #17

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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario Xavier View Post
    Hi Mary,

    I'll gladly share my personal dealings. I may be a novice with a camera but I'm a Pro at losing inspiration!

    There are many reasons why my camera suddenly looks like an expensive weight more than the escape it's meant to be. But the truth is if I really enjoy it then my current lack of inspiration is probably because I need to change perspectives for a little while. Instead of taking the picture, get your picture taken OR put the camera away and enjoy the work of others. It's like music, it's supposed to be therapeutic to me instead of bothersome.

    I will do what Donald suggests and leave the camera behind. Bleh! Leave it! But once I'm tooless, my eyes seem to open. I also may try to critique the work of others in my head and then scroll through the comments to see if I'm observing what others are. Anything to change roles where I'm not the one responsible for the image always leads me back to the hunger, the hunt, and the challenge to impress myself.

    Changing my role from participant to observer brought back the desire to participate. I spent hours on Flickr looking at the work of people like this guy and browsing the forums and it came right back.

    It is a welcome mental refresh because the only other option (that's not an option) is to quit.
    Thank you, Mario. I put my camera on the shelf, in the closet. Thank you for the good advice. Much appreciated.

  18. #18

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    Re: No Inspiration

    Quote Originally Posted by Camellia View Post
    Take care of yourself Mary and keep talking to us! You are not alone.

    R
    Thank you, Raylee.

  19. #19
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    Re: No Inspiration

    I'd like to meet you all for tea . . . I sometimes put my camera down for quite a while, which I don't think is a good thing -- I often berate myself for not shooting every day. But then I decide that that's just what I do, and I don't worry about it.

  20. #20
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    Re: No Inspiration

    It is so weird coming to CiC and seeing that others are going through the same space that I am at the moment. Our family is in tatters, our future is uncertain and my camera is dead in my hands. Meeting for tea would be such a good thing....

    Hugs and interwebby support for you others who are feeling pain and uncertainty. It will change....

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