Some Thoughts From My New Class, “What To Shoot When There Is Nothing To Shoot,” on KelbyOne
I am so excited to have been given the opportunity to present my class What to Shoot When There is Nothing to Shoot on KelbyOne.com. I’ve been around KelbyOne for a long time in a supporting role, and now I’m thankful I can contribute in a bigger way.
Let me tell you a little about my class.
Most classes out there teach you how to shoot, but very few, if any, teach you what to shoot. This class gives you practical shooting ideas that’ll help motivate and inspire you to get out and shoot more often. Face it, even when you swear there is nothing worthy of shooting at the moment, there is always something to shoot.
Case in point: Restaurants. Restaurants provide a treasure-trove of images. Most people don’t see them because they are focused on why they are there, food. I am too most of the time. But next time you are out to eat, take a second to look around and see if there isn’t an image to be had. The following image I got just the other evening.
Here are some other images all taken at a restaurant while waiting for my food.
The class gives multiple examples of places, events and times to shoot, then talks about waking up to new ideas that are right in front of you, such as Shoot Details.
Too often we focus on the big picture, basically missing the trees for the forest, or, in the following example, the plateaus for the arch. On any given day at Mesa Arch, in Utah, there will be 20 to 40 photographers fighting for the perfect spot to set up and photograph the first light of the day hitting the bottom of the arch. While doing so, 99% of them will miss other images right in front of them.
By switching from a wide angle to telephoto lens, multiple layers of plateaus make a fairly interesting image. Yes, get the iconic shot, but don’t be so focused on it that you miss everything else around you.
I’ll leave you with this tip that will force you to look, and look hard for images. Start a Self Assignment. I have several that have been going on for years. Everywhere I go I’m hunting for three things, architectural numbers, architectural patterns and reflections in shop windows. It forces me to look around all the time no matter where I am. I encourage you to find something that interests you and make it a self assignment, then see how it changes how you see things.
Here are a couple of samples of my self assignments: