The best way to learn about photography, no matter what level you are at, is to take pictures.
Sometimes it can be hard to get inspiration and motivation to go out and take pictures, so a good way to get round that is to set yourself a challenge. It’s all about the planning to make sure you get the opportunities you need to meet the challenge.
So the first thing is to think of a theme for your challenge. It may simply be something like ‘the colour green’ or ‘street signs’, or you may want to set yourself a slightly harder challenge like ‘urban wild life’. Just make sure it’s fairly realistic!
Once you have picked a theme, you need to plan a location which may take a little research. Try and pick somewhere you are familiar with too as this makes it easier to work out where you are going to get the best shots. Going to a completely new location may mean you spend more time trying to find the places to take pictures than actually taking pictures.
OK, you have the theme and you have the location, so just give it a go. If you are using digital you can take lots of pictures. Just look for interesting scenes, objects or lighting and take several shots Experiment with your camera too, exploring the various settings and see what results you get. Take the same scene with different settings to learn how they effect the picture.
Try and get at least 10 good shots from each challenge that you are proud of. This is also a good way to build up a portfolio too should you want to pursue a career in photography and it’s also a great way to start building up a stock image library too.
So here are 3 challenge ideas to get you going:
1 – Circles. You can do this in your own home, but try and be imaginative.
2 – Trees. Look for interesting shapes and textures.
3 – Reflections. You can get creative with mirrors, or maybe see what reflections you can see in puddles.