In this post Bobby R. Strange shares some tips on finding photographic gems in your own backyard.
We’ve all heard stories of grand treasures being found by following the “X” on the treasure map, but how far do we have to travel from the comfort of our homes to uncover the treasure that is a wonderful photo opportunity? 100 miles? 1000 miles? Try 50 feet! I know what you’re thinking…50 feet from where my favorite slippers are isn’t exactly an exotic locale. But it can be just as rewarding!
There are many photo “treasures” to be found in our own backyards if we just take the time to explore them. I think many times it’s just a matter of not seeing the trees for the forest (yes, you heard me right). We walk outside and take in the whole scene without seeing what makes up our own little part of the world. Other times it may be that we just don’t think there are little hidden gems right outside our bedroom windows.
So how do we find these treasures? Here are a few tips that helped me when I first started exploring my yard…
- Probably the biggest tip that’s helped me is to just stop and take a look around. “Smell the roses”, so to speak. Just because you’ve been outside doesn’t mean you’ve noticed everything that’s there. Which brings us to tip #2…
- Pick a spot in your yard and look at everything within arms reach. Find something interesting? That’s your “X”…take a picture of it! You’ll be amazed at what you start to see if you just pick a spot and look around that one area.
- Try to see your yard through a child’s eyes. Kids don’t analyze why they want to build that sand castle. They just do it because it’s fun and interesting to them.
- Think small. Little things like a rusty door hinge, a lady bug on a leaf, or even an outdoor water faucet can make wonderful images. And all three of these things can be found outside most houses.
- When you find your “X”, shoot it from different angles. Walk all the way around it if you can and see it from all sides. One subject can sometimes give you more than one great image.
- And if you live in a city and don’t have any kind of yard? Go to the park. Most cities have at least a small park located near residential areas.
See, you don’t need an eye patch or a parrot on your shoulder in order to find those photo treasures (although they may make the hunt more fun!). All you really need is a willingness to stop and take a look around at the things you overlook every day. There are many little treasure maps to explore right outside your door. In fact, I recently “set sail” on my own backyard photo treasure hunting expedition and discovered the “treasures” you see below. So grab your camera, throw on your pirates cap (optional), and embark on your next great adventure…in your own backyard.
This post was contributed by Bobby R. Strange – see more of their work at their gallery here.