Ok.. the First thing to try was to photograph WITHOUT a memory card.
SECOND THING TO TRY
Go to a location you to intend to photograph…. BUT LEAVE YOUR CAMERA AT HOME !
Yes .. I know you may be thinking I am crazy at this point… but please run with me on this one. I am not crazy. I have some wisdom to share with you for you to try.
It is very easy with 16Gig and 32Gig cards and terabytes of storage to just snap away mindlessly without awareness and without truly connecting with a scene….and without truly connecting with what you want to say through an image.
Take a notepad and a pencil. Pretend you have a camera and draw a frame on the page and sketch quickly what catches your eye…and what you would or really wished to have clicked and taken with your camera – should you have had your camera in your hand! Beside your sketch write words which come to you. Firstly what you are feeling personally; then what you are feeling the scene portrays.
Keep looking and observing and witnessing your own personal response. Keep sketching quick rough sketches of the scene which you would have taken a photograph of, and keep writing words which come to you….How do I feel ? What feeling is the scene portraying to me?
Now this next step is important. STAY THERE for a while longer and look through your sketches. Choose ONE…. and then do another sketch of how you would like to process that image…and what characteristices you would like to have that image protray. Write notes and words over the image if you like.. eg… Dark/moody sky…. strong vignette… B&W….. feeling of isolation ….. cool colours….. dramatic contrast….. come again tomorrow with props….. composite with another image …… etc… get the idea!
I will guarantee you will learn a lot about yourself through this process and you WILL start to peel away the impediments to you creating images which reflect your personal voice.
I felt strong, soft, yet freedom to change direction.
I wanted the image to be developed in B&W and to express strength, fluidity and freedom to come back to balance. I returned to the tree and created this image; which became my first ever tree portrait!