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Thinking outside the Box

July 3, 2012

Next to practicing with my camera, one of the best things that I am doing to grow in photography is complete personal photography challenges.  Each month our Moms with a Camera photography club has a challenge and bonus challenge. I have appreciated how the photo challenges have given me direction in what I’m photographing and inspired me to think “outside the box” more.  I have done several other photo challenges as well, all helping me grow in my skills and more importantly, see regular daily life  a little differently.

Last month our challenge was “bubbles.”  On the surface this seemed like a fairly straightforward challenge, however I’m learning that there’s always more that can be done with each challenge.  I thought I would share a little about how I have started looking at challenges.  The first thing I do is brainstorm all that comes to mind regarding the theme.  For bubbles, I just wrote a list of everything bubble related I could think of: blowing bubbles with a wand, catching bubbles, bubble bath, blowing bubbles with a straw (milk), washing dishes, washing a car, blowing a gum bubble, paint bubbles. Then I thought of bubble wrap, why not!?!

Having a list of ideas gets me inspired and helps me focus on the theme.  For the next couple of weeks I set out to get as many theme related photos as possible.  The more photos that I take, the more I get inspired and the more “out of the box” I am able to think.  I actually took the below photo shortly after the bubble challenge was complete.  I hope it illustrates what I mean by thinking “out of the box.”  I would love to try this photo again, with bubbles in the air as well, just waiting for some actual sunshine and good shadows.  I feel like my theme photos always start off pretty generic, but as my creativity grows I start to get more ideas, this is when it gets exciting!

For me, photo challenges aren’t about taking a photo and checking the challenge off my to do list.  Sure, you could do that and it would be fine. However, where I find my growth is through trying out several ideas and building on those (when possible).  The more you do, the more you will learn.  The more intentional you are, the greater your results will be.  Be challenged!

*The current challenge is “Urban”




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