Motivational Drought

HarleyFrankHarleyFrank Posts: 14Member
edited December 2013 in General Discussions
Can't seem to get motivated to shoot anything. Retired after 29+ years of TV news shooting. Took a nice long (6yr) break, now ready to play with my expensive new Nikon gear. But after making dozens of TV news images daily for that long, I'm short on motivation. When I look at photo magazines, I see specialists doing exactly what I was doing in TV. When I think of how many times I looked through a viewfinder and composed something pleasing to look at, it's really astounding. Each day I would roll out with my reporter and shoot dozens of nice images for story 'B-roll'. Then compose 3-4 nice portraits for interview scenes. Finally shoot an interesting reporter stand-up (within reason). Then edit it all into a news package for air. Another day spent creating & editing 30-40 pleasing images. Just another day. The question is, after 29 years of that, where do I look for motivation? I'm stuck in the "been there, done that" quicksand. Any ideas?
Post edited by HarleyFrank on
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Comments

  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,030Moderator
    Sounds like your problem is that you are trying to photograph the same things you were during your professional life - how about trying different genres of photography? Then there is making composites in PhotoShop? I know people who find great pleasure in that.
    Always learning.
  • JuergenJuergen Posts: 315Member
    You could:
    - explore the macro world
    - shoot black & white for a week, something you probably did not do in a long time
    - shoot only 1/30 sec for a week and enjoy the results (from nice panning shots to just blurry crap)

    Have fun exploring creativity without having a reporter or editor telling you what to shoot and enjoy doing it at your own timeline.

    Jürgen
    D4, D800E, Nikon 1 J2, 600 f/4, trinity, PC-E 45, PC-E 24, 105, 50 f/1,8g, 85 f/1,4, Sigma 150-500
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    @HarleyFrank: To reignite your perspective on taking an image, you should step out of what you know and get into things you have not tried before. Share with us what type of image you have taken and perhaps we can find a new path for you.

    Things to consider: macro-photography, HDR photography, nature & wildlife photography...
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • ElvisheferElvishefer Posts: 329Member
    Take up woodworking.
    D700, 70-200mm f/2.8 VRII, 24-70mm f/2.8, 14-24mm f/2.8, 50mm f/1.4G, 200mm f/4 Micro, 105mm f/2.8 VRII Micro, 35mm f/1.8, 2xSB900, 1xSB910, R1C1, RRS Support...

    ... And no time to use them.
  • ChasCSChasCS Posts: 309Member
    edited December 2013
    If you check out a few pages in the photos on the http://generallyawesome.com/photos.html website for humorous ideas.

    Ah, pics of kids never gets old, to some... Plenty of them around.

    Wildlife is always interesting, be it in nature or in your city Zoo location.

    Architecture, landscapes, even just the shapes we notice within clouds in the sky.

    Look in magazines for ideas to imbellish upon... :-)

    The sights are endless in any big city, or small towns... Old buildings, signs, fine autos, even antique stores,.

    Not to mention art gallery, museum, fire hall, or a big mall... Ideas? Never a shortage here.
    Of course I live in one of the most marvelous and awesome cities in the Northern hemisphere. Here in Canada.
    The best country in this planet... Maybe in this astral plane.

    Look for pretty faces and or really old people, for those character flaws, and beauty marks!
    I'd like to do an album of interesting scars, they always tell a story, and anything unusual.
    Post edited by ChasCS on
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  • PhotobugPhotobug Posts: 4,537Member
    Couple of ideas for you:
    Switch over and shoot B&W for a week.
    Get outside in the early morning and get the sunrise.
    Get outside in the late afternoon and shoot sunsets, find water to shoot over.
    I like the suggestion to try macro photography.

    Take your gear and go to the Smoky Mt National Park between April 20th and June 1 for spring flowers, terrific water shots, great sunsets, and great sunrises. Take your time, allow 5 days. Do the traditional shots and then get creative. Be sure to hike to Laurel Falls, early in the morning. Explore the back roads and ask the Park Rangers for areas that are not visited by the tourist. Do things different which should help reinvent your shooting.

    The important thing is to not force pictures, let it evelope.
    D750 & D7100 | 24-70 F2.8 G AF-S ED, 70-200 F2.8 AF VR, TC-14E III, TC-1.7EII, 35 F2 AF D, 50mm F1.8G, 105mm G AF-S VR | Backup & Wife's Gear: D5500 & Sony HX50V | 18-140 AF-S ED VR DX, 55-300 AF-S G VR DX |
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  • HarleyFrankHarleyFrank Posts: 14Member
    All excellent ideas. Enough to get me going.... One thing bad about TV news photography, you shoot almost everything sooner or later. Think I'm being impatient right now. I'm no longer interested in photojournalism. Just lovely images. I'll try a couple of these ideas and get back with the results. Thanks!
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    @HarleyFrank: I too live in San Diego, send me a PM and we will go out and have some fun.

    Cheers,

    Ali
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • NSXTypeRNSXTypeR Posts: 2,042Member
    You could try turning off your LCD by default and shoot without seeing your image immediately.

    If you shot with film it would give you the "feeling" of shooting with film again, and a similar excitement when you see the photos for the first time on your computer screen.

    Best part is, you don't need to buy new gear for this. :D
    Nikon D7000/ Nikon D40/ Nikon FM2/ 18-135 AF-S/ 35mm 1.8 AF-S/ 105mm Macro AF-S/ 50mm 1.2 AI-S
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    Maybe just walking around with no camera, observing things but no photos. Do this for a week or so. Then decide if there are some things you want to capture for yourself. You may want to attend some other cultural events……without being a reporter or camera man…..
    Msmoto, mod
  • JuergenJuergen Posts: 315Member
    :))
    I really appreciate the versatility of NRF.
    In this thread we have suggestions from "take up woodwork" up to " take pictures of naked women"

    I love it!

    D4, D800E, Nikon 1 J2, 600 f/4, trinity, PC-E 45, PC-E 24, 105, 50 f/1,8g, 85 f/1,4, Sigma 150-500
  • proudgeekproudgeek Posts: 1,422Member
    The only woman I can convince to get naked in front of me is my wife, and while she's smokin' she's drawn a clear line at doing so while there's a camera in the room. :)
  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    You need a purpose to your photography
    try specializing and choose something interesting and very difficult
    e.g. become a world expert on the blue crested thingamajig or the light houses of Outer Mongolia
    In the past you have got away with producing high quality pics but may be, not the best in the world



  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
    edited December 2013
    get the triggertrap mobile for your phone and dslr. have fun popping ballons, photographing with sound etc.

    EDIT: I ran into this after i posted my comment http://okdothis.com/
    Post edited by Vipmediastar_JZ on
  • ThomasHortonThomasHorton Posts: 323Member
    I might as well add my worthless suggestions. :)

    There are informal photo contests published on the Internets Tubes. For example on Flikr there is a group of over 50 year old photographers. A nice group. Every week they have a different "competition" where there is a different topic every week. Iam sure there are thousands of other such groups on the Internets Tubes.

    Even if you don't participate in the competition, commit to your self, that you will follow along with the weekly topics.

    This serves two purposes.

    1. It takes the basic creative decision out of your hands because someone else is thinking it up
    2. Like your news career, it can force you out of your comfort zone.

    Say this week's topic is kittens and you never had any interest in taking pictures of stupid kittens. Well, this will force you to take pictures of a stupid kitten. You may find that you have an interest in SK's Perhaps not. Perhaps the next week's topic may spur an interest.

    Or just take pictures of naked women! :)
    Gear: Camera obscura with an optical device which transmits and refracts light.
  • henrik1963henrik1963 Posts: 559Member
    I have no problem taking a lot of pictures if I´m traveling - it is summer weather is good lots of new things to see. But now it is winter it is freezing outside - you get the picture.

    Here is one idea I have tried in the past. Put my 105 micro on my D800. I only allowed myself to take pictures at F2.8 for a whole day. That forced me to see things differently. At first it was irritating but after a while it was a lot of fun. You never know what you get.

    If you have a GoPro - tape it to a shopping cart in time lapse mode next time you are shopping and see what you get.
  • HarleyFrankHarleyFrank Posts: 14Member
    Thanks one and all!
  • ChasCSChasCS Posts: 309Member
    The shopping cart idea may get you in trouble.
    Might be illegal to film in many retail locations.

    Besides it could even be deemed a pervert move. Not wise.
    Get yourself arrested and interviewed by Chris Hanson, that NBC investigative journalist. J/K

    No, I'd stay well away, out of that jurisdiction of photo taking.
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  • henrik1963henrik1963 Posts: 559Member
    @ChasCS: Well then put the GoPro on something else that moves. The point was not to spy on people but to see a shopping cart slowly fill. It may well not be legal where you live. But deeming it a pervert move? Come on!

    The trick is to find something in your everyday life that could give you some interesting pictures.
  • ChasCSChasCS Posts: 309Member
    Hey, sorry bud, I partially misunderstood your intent of purpose.
    Yeah, aim her inwards and watch the grub accumulate.

    Anyway, J/K was there, it's meant in jest, so whoops!!
    But you know too, that kind of thing Has happened in the past. But I wouldn't accuse you of those crimes.

    Thanks for clarifying what you meant bud. I see no harm there, what so ever...
    D800, AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR, B+W Clear MRC 77mm, AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR, Sigma DG UV 77mm,
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  • henrik1963henrik1963 Posts: 559Member
    @ChasCS: No hard feelings. I know that different people have different views on when to take pictures and when not to.

    This reminds me of an episode in a New York subway train. My GF and I was sitting across from a young mother. We got to talk. After a while her kid was doing some funny faces to grab some attention. I asked the mother if it was OK to take a picture of the kid. She looked shocked - explaining that she did not like people to take pictures of her kids - going on about how many pervert was out there and so on. But she said that I could take a picture - You seem nice enough. I did not take a picture.

    After a few weeks of watching american TV I can understand why some people feel like the young mother - Nothing but violent crime reports in the news. One story more sick than the other.

    Sad that some people grow up thinking that the person sitting next to them might be a pervert.

    I feel lucky to live in Denmark where I don´t have to worry about perverts all the time. I know bad things do happen - even here. But a lot of good things happen to.

    Happy shooting to all of you - sorry if I derailed the topic.
  • Nik0n2011Nik0n2011 Posts: 70Member
    edited December 2013
    try to get back in love with something out there, i myself first love animals and nature, if i didn't have a camera with me i'd just feed by hand squirrels, birds and lions (eh eh), you really have got to love something out there, then go back to the camera, you could love sunsets, city architecture, abstract things, find back that passion, reactivate the observer without equipment.

    maybe you could have some walk arounds and try to think and discover what interests you the most, once you find it then its time to bring back the shooter :P

    don't make it like ' i don't know what to shoot ', thats secondary
    let your very own eye and brain work with fantasy around shapes and colours
    Post edited by Nik0n2011 on
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0
    edited December 2013
    Give yourself an assignment. Here is one:

    Picturalism (look into it) make 3 photo's. one landscape, one portrait and one still composition, all in the style of picturalism. You get till the 31 of January. (there was no television in that time). Show them on PAD.

    Another one, New topographic (look in to that one to). Make a series of 3 photo's in the style of new topographic. Very boring, but very different.

    Another one, traffic signs. Make something in Photoshop with a traffic sign and be creative. Example, a line of trees with one of those in a danger traffic sign (you can't use this idea anymore).

    That is all from me by now and start listening to the radio as I do, I have stations without advertising, super.

    Post edited by [Deleted User] on
    Those who say it can't be done, should not interrupt those doing it!
  • ChasCSChasCS Posts: 309Member
    Speaking of commercial free radio
    http://www.ckua.com

    I am fortunate to have had this radio station all my life..
    CKUA is.Canada's oldest broadcaster... 1923
    http://www.uofaengineer.engineering.ualberta.ca/article.cfm?article=40322&issue=40307

    And it remains the best radio, to this day, Why? Because they play all sorts of awesome..

    Take a long quiet walk into the forest or woods, sit on a stump, relax and be very silent, now listen carefully and watch.
    D800, AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR, B+W Clear MRC 77mm, AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR, Sigma DG UV 77mm,
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  • tcole1983tcole1983 Posts: 981Member
    The photo a day thread always helps me, but I know what you mean. I have Halloween pictures on my camera still that are waiting to be transferred. Having trouble lately finding time to go out and shoot anything personally.
    D5200, D5000, S31, 18-55 VR, 17-55 F2.8, 35 F1.8G, 105 F2.8 VR, 300 F4 AF-S (Previously owned 18-200 VRI, Tokina 12-24 F4 II)
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