With the shorter days and colder weather (well, for me here in the States, at least), it’s getting harder, although not impossible, to get outside for the beautiful landscape and urban shots.
I’m the type of person that always likes to have a new project (or two) to work on, so here’s some things I plan on working on – maybe it will spark some ideas for you!
1. Food Photography
I love to cook, and I’m always sharing new recipes with family and friends, and it’s nice to have a photo to go along with them, but I have a bit to learn when it comes to making my food look as good in photos as it tastes. Now is the perfect time to start learning, though! Not only am I stuck indoors more, but I also make a lot of warm, hearty dinners in the winter that should hopefully make for some good subjects – including holiday dinners, of course! To get me started, a quick search of DPS has shown me an introduction to food photography, some food photography tutorial videos, and food photography techniques and tips.
2. Light Painting
Light painting is something that I’ve played with in the past, and it’s one of those things that seems to be a popular phase that a lot of photographers go through, but I’ve recently got re-inspired to play around some more after a series of posts on DIYPhotography.net on light painting, tools used in light painting, and how to create an orb. And, of course, by the recently posted 25 spectacular light painting images here on DPS.
3. Fun with holiday decorations
Is it sad that it’s not family, friends, or friendly neighborhood competitions that get me excited about decorating for the Holidays? It’s getting fun photos! There are just so many great decorations up around town and in houses that it’s hard to resist. I don’t put up many decorations myself, so I’m sure to take my camera wherever I go this holiday season. For instance, this cute snowman is sitting in front of my parent’s Christmas tree.
4. Learning to use lighting
I don’t have an off-camera flash. To be honest, I’m a bit intimidated trying to figure out what I should look for in a flash and how I would use it once I got it (or them). So I plan on taking some time this winter and reading through Strobist’s Lighting 101. Will some of it be over my head? Definitely. Will it make me wish I had an off-camera flash? Well, I already do, but it will probably make me want one more. Will it help me make an educated purchase of what lighting equipment I actually need? I sure hope so!
5. Snow photos
I’m really excited about this one – and I hate the snow! Once again, I’m starting to appreciate things more now that I have a camera to photograph them with. Last winter I had my DSLR for less than a year, and was unsure of myself in many areas of photography – snow being one of those. I found it’s really hard to get a good photo with snow it. For one, there are footprints in the snow, or dirt in the snow, or various other things that change the snow from soft and beautiful to dirty and gross. Even a bigger issue, though, is that exposing snow can be a difficult thing and I would end up with half my snow photos being a dull gray and the other half being bright white. I was able to get a few photos that I was semi-happy with (like the one you see here), but I’m looking forward to taking the things I’ve read online, and the things I’ve learned with another year of experience under my belt to really start getting some good snow photos. Let it snow! I’m ready!
6. Looking through old photos
If you’re staying inside trying to keep warm, it’s a perfect time to start looking through some of your old photos. There’s a few reasons why I like to do this. When I first transfer a big batch of photos from my memory card to my computer, I’m often overwhelmed by them all and pick out just a few to edit and post online – there might be some other gems in there just waiting to be discovered and edited. Another reason I like to look through them is because I’d like to think that I’m constantly learning and improving, so maybe there’s some photo out there that I could edit better this time around. Finally, looking through my photos often gives me inspiration and new ideas – I can try redoing an old photo that didn’t come out exactly how I wanted it to, for example.
So, what projects are you planning on tackling with these shorter, colder days?
About the Author: Jennifer Jacobs is an amateur photographer who runs iffles.com – a site for photography beginners. She’s also addicted to flickr and you can follow her stream here.
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