Tuesday 17 April 2007

Setting yourself a Photo Project can enhance your photo skills

Getting a great photograph is a very satisfying feeling. Sometimes skill is what gets the shot, sometimes luck. It usually takes a combination of the two. We all have a few shots from the past that would fit the bill. But is there a link between your photographs? Could someone connect your shots as being from the same photographer?

A more demanding way to test your skills as a photographer, and possibly the most rewarding, is to take a number of shots on a single theme. This technique is sometimes called a “Photo Essay”, where you try to tell a story through a series of images. Your story doesn't have to be very involved, it doesn't have to be earth shattering and it most certainly doesn't have to be on an obvious theme, it just needs a common link between them.

Your project could be of shop fronts or children riding bicycles, it could be sailing boats or flowers, it could even be ruined buildings or cloud formations. Whatever takes your fancy. You could easily have a number of projects on the go at the one time. Take as long as you like to complete it, days, weeks, months or years. There are no rules that say you ever have to finish!

Over on my Flickr site I've outlined some of my own projects. I have also shown my reasoning behind them so as to help whet your creative appetite and set you on the road... Flickr Photo Project Colletion

Some suggestions for photo projects:

• Old • Young • Families • Teenagers • Shopping • Sunglasses

• Georgian • Modern • Doors • Roofs • Windows • Streetscapes

• Flowers • Trees • Farms • Sunsets • Insects • Clouds

• Trains • Trucks • Buses • Factories • Equipment • Trams

• Beach Items • Shopping • Restaurants • Hotel Pools • Apartments • Bars

Photo projects obviously have a common theme but they can also benefit from a treatment that is consistent throughout the shots. Decide whether you would like these to be colour or black and white, landscape or portrait, close in or wide angle, shot from above or below.

Of course this list is not comprehensive, it is just meant to get you thinking. If you are finding it hard to decide what you might like to photograph simply take one of the topics above, put your own slant on it and take six shots on that theme over the next few weeks.

The decisions are yours, go enjoy your photography!

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