Here’s a Hack to Unlock Creativity: Do Something Boring.

For creatives, inspiration is often found in the most unlikely of places (like the shower) and at the worst of times (like when trying to fall asleep). But what if the commonality between all those cliche places is the fact that they are boring? I was reading a novel (my favorite boredom buster) when I found one such source of unlikely inspiration and an idea to unlock creativity. 

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Artur Kayukov Makes Amazing Portraits Without Any Photoshop

“You can say I go strictly by the definition of the word Photography,” says Artur Kayukov about his skill set behind the camera and his reluctance to post-process. Not someone who likes to spend hours editing at his PC, he finds a certain charm in unedited images. Believing beauty is flawed and asymmetry is what makes us unique, he tells me what made him start a ‘No Photoshop’ portrait series and why he embraces this ideology more these days.

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Jovana Rikalo’s Fairy-Tale World Resonates with New Audiences

All images by Jovana Rikalo. Used with permission.

“I live for magic and dreams. I find inspiration everywhere, but mostly in life and people,” says fine art and portrait photographer Jovana Rikalo about her fun and whimsical fairy-tale photography. Passionate about dreams, life, and folklore, Jovana says photography keeps her both alive and happy. Her fun approach and clever setups are designed to transport audiences “away from worries and routines of a daily life.” Jovana says, “I think that every photo must have a story in order to be complete. There is no story without emotion.”

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How Photographer Lidia Vives Got More Creative During the Pandemic

All images by Lidia Vives. Used with permission.

“Perhaps the biggest goal is to be one of those artists who can go months without creating but keep selling so it doesn’t matter,” says Lidia Vives to us in an interview. “But I guess that’s still a long way off.” I first found Lidia through Tumblr. And I then connected with her on her Stages of Heartbreak series. Lidia’s work is emotional, experimental, and energetic. She finds ways to pack feelings and ideas into photos. Where most folks create to satisfy an algorithm on some app, Lidia doesn’t. And that’s one of the reasons why her work demands so much respect.

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4 Unique Lenses That Will Help Produce Creative In-Camera Images

Forget Photoshop; these unique lenses will render special effects in-camera!

Have you ever wished that you could create unique images without having to use software like Photoshop? If only there were lenses that could produce dream-like effects and surreal bokeh. Well, good news, these lenses exist, and you can get them without breaking the bank. The lenses are available across multiple platforms, and they’ll get your creative juices flowing. So, if you want to be more creative and you want to spend more time away from your computer, you should really take a closer look at these four unique lenses.

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Got a Really Creative Project with No Photoshop? We Want to See It!

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Hey folks,

This time, it’s all about In-Camera creativity! If you’re a photographer who has a conceptual series and you don’t use Photoshop, we want to feature you. This is a further evolution of the series that we’re doing around No Photoshop. It’s our mission to show the masses that photography doesn’t necessarily mean you need Photoshop. There’s a line between being a photographer and a Photoshop artist. Maybe you’ve got the skills to not even use post-production. Sure, we’ll allow a bit of Lightroom or Capture One editing, but we want to feature photographers with the creativity and know-how to pull it off in-camera. Maybe you’re using lens filters or flashes, etc. We just want to feature the best of the best. After the jump, we’ve got instructions!

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8 Unique Lenses: Dare to Be Different and Create Like Never Before

These unique lenses will help you create entirely different images than anything you have made before.

Modern lenses are stunningly sharp, and free from distortions, lens flares, and anything else that gives them character. There is nothing wrong with this, but sometimes it can get a little boring seeing images that are flawless and clinical in appearance. However, worry not, because a few incredibly unique lenses have bags of character that are sure to make your images stand out from the sea of sameness. If you really want to add style to your images in-camera, you absolutely must see the unique lenses we have rounded up after the break.

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On Creativity: Refilling Creative Juices for Photographers

Creativity is a finite resource that needs to be replenished — hence the term creative juices feels accurate, even for photography.

Creativity is a big part of our craft as photographers. It’s what fuels our best ideas, defines our personal style, and sets our work apart from random snaps and throwaway photos. It’s so crucial for both professional and personal work that we find ourselves restless whenever we feel we’re not being creative enough with our concepts or execution. I’ve lost track of all the ideas or projects I abandoned the moment I realized they were mediocre or not creative enough. I swoon at projects — photography related or otherwise — brought to life by creativity and originality. However, I also concede that creativity is a highly subjective construct, and our notions of what makes something creative also tend to change with time. So, it only follows that we eventually formulate our own ways of coping with creative blocks. For those who are yet to figure it out, however, getting unstuck from a creative rut can be frustrating.

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Film Photography Is a Form of Creative Rebellion and I Love It

Film photography probably doesn’t mean much to most people, but to some it’s an exciting and much-needed creative rebellion from the digital grind. 

When I first joined film photography communities some 10 years ago, I honestly did not expect that it would grow very much. Most of the world seemed to have moved on from film stocks, and the cameras were no more than vintage keepsakes of photography history. I would get strange looks whenever people figured out I was shooting with a film camera. We were seen as a bunch of misfits, or hipsters, as the wretched label came to be. But, the deeper I got into it, I more clearly saw what shooting film meant for those who did: it’s a form of creative rebellion in a world that puts a premium on perfection.

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Five Simple Ways to Beat Creative Block in Photography

We all struggle from bouts of creative block once in a while. But we don’t have to let it drag on and cripple us from shooting. Here are some simple ways to help us break out of it.

Are you stuck with your photography projects or haven’t been shooting for a while? Don’t like the photos you’ve taken lately? Having a hard time breaking out of that creative rut? These things happen to us in different forms and varying degrees. But, that doesn’t mean we have to endlessly struggle with it. A video by Jamie Windsor shares some tips and thoughts that allowed him to identify how creative block happen to him and what helps him move past it.

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Here’s a Way to Justifiably Get More Money for Your Printed Photo

When photographers print their images they should make it really special.

Printed photographs are perhaps the most fantastic way to appreciate and understand the art of photography. Most photographers aren’t printing enough. Digital screens have become the default way in which we view photography. They have taken over our lives. But, the moment someone can take in their favorite photo as a print, their jaw drops. Beyond simply printing images, how do you make someone pay attention to it and want to buy one? This is something that requires you to think out of the box. As with most art and media these days, you need to create something folks want to interact with or you need to have interacted with the print in some way. It needs to be made special. It needs to be one of a kind.

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4 Easy to Follow Tips on How to Get Yourself Out of a Creative Rut

There’s nothing harder than dealing with a creative rut when you’re a creator.

Being a photographer or a media creator can be challenging at the best of times, but when you find yourself slipping into a creative rut, what was once fun and uplifting can become a burden quite quickly. Like many others, I have been through several creative ruts, with my most recent rut being not too long ago. This time around I didn’t know what I was going to do to get myself out of it. Anita Sadowska, a popular YouTuber, recently posted a new video that deals with this issue. The video offers four very easy to follow tips on how you can break free of your own creative rut. Continue reading…

YOU Are a Good Photographer and You Should Let Everyone Know It

Modesty in photography needs to become a thing of the past. It’s time to embrace how good you are.

“Oh, I’m not that good.” A common comment that is thrown out when a photographer receives praise for the work they do. “There are many photographers better than me.” Maybe. But who cares? What is the point of being overly modest? Surely it’s a waste of everyone’s time. I suggest we throw it in the bin, instead opting to say “Yes. I am that good,” without worrying how others may react.

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Ocean Guardians Tackles the Issue of Trawling in a Creative Way

All images by Brett Stanley with creative direction by Christine Ren. Used with permission.

“It’s becoming so hard, even with incredible imagery, to get messages to land with impact online.” says Christine Ren, who was both the model and provided creative direction for the Ocean Guardians project. “I won’t stop putting content online digitally, but digital-only is absolutely failing when it comes to conservation storytelling and even non-profit fundraising, in my opinion.” We’ve featured Christine’s work before on Silent Killers and Carbonated Ocean. Christine is passionate about the conservation of our oceans and uses art to get that message across. Specifically for Ocean Guardians, she tackled the issue of trawling. Like any creative who places specific elements in a scene to tell a story, her and photographer Brett Stanley collaborated on a photo series that does a great job of getting a message across. But as I talked about with Christine, we both think that the world needs to start doing more about this than sharing on social media.

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See How This Photographer Brings Star Wars to Life with Their Amazing Toy Photography Skills

toy photography

Toy photography is a rapidly growing genre with creatives, and this amazing Star Wars toy shoot shows why. All images by Felix Hernandez. Used with Creative Commons Permission.

There are many genres of photography that are growing at an incredibly fast rate thanks to cameras becoming more accessible to the masses and because of what can be created in post production with software like Photoshop. One of those genres is toy photography. After the break take a look at some truly amazing Star Wars toy photography, and watch a short video that shows some behind the scenes footage from the shoot.

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Seeing Things That Aren’t There…Until You Look

The following is a syndicated post originally found on J. Riley Stewart’s blog. It has been published here exclusively with his permission. Syndication by Joy Celine Asto.

To appreciate today’s featured image, you have to STOP AND LOOK at it for a moment. Once again quietly: stop. and look. I don’t mean to be yelling at you. Really. But I did want to get your attention, because the story I want to tell you today demands some creative thought on your part. Fun! At this time of year, with the holidays fast approaching, we’re all going 100 miles per hour. And we need to just stop for brief periods to catch our breath. Or we risk missing something important.

The picture isn’t important. The things our kids say and do everyday: those are important. The holiday wishes we get from friends: again, important. The quiet planning by those busily preparing holiday meals: Important. Important. Important!

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How to Get Out of a Rut with Street Photography and Continue Growing

Street Photography is as much about psychology as it is about skill and creativity.

There is a mental process that goes into making photographs of everyday people in the street. Confidence is a huge driving force in getting strong, compelling visual content. When confidence is high, so is your creative flair. However, there will be times when you’re not your best self, and a high level of creative productivity is not always sustainable. Almost unknowingly you fall deep into a rut and your photography suffers. You can all of sudden feel stuck, and find that you are asking yourself, “how do I get out of this?”

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Take Your Art to New Heights with Inspiring Words from Oliviero Toscani

Oliviero Toscani’s perspectives on art and photography could change the way you perceive your own art and your creative adventures.

Whatever kind of photography genre or creative venture you’re doing, you’re certainly doing art. Award-winning Italian photographer Oliviero Toscani has one important piece of advice to further your craft, “All art has to provoke something. Great art produces discussion.” If you’re not quite sure yet how to do that, this London Real interview will surely inspire you and give you some fresh ideas on how to create thought-provoking art.

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Go Back to Basics and Overcome Creative Fatigue with Film Photography

Feeling stuck with your photography? Try stripping your gear down to the basics and doing some film photography instead.

Many of today’s photographers are starting to do hybrid photography; shooting with both digital and film cameras. The former is for work, the latter for personal projects. With this setup, photographers often find it helpful for shaking up their routines, doing photography differently, and overcoming creative fatigue. If this is something you haven’t tried yet, here’s a video by Ben Kepka that shows how he does it.

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I Quit My Day Job to Fuel My Street Photography; This Is What Happened

After several years of battling with the cycle better known as the rat race, I could take no more

Tapping into your creative thoughts can be a difficult process. Challenges such as lacking motivation, direction and ideas can be common brick walls almost every creative has to try breaking through at some point or another. What makes the sometimes painful journey through your creative flow even more of a challenge is trying to balance it with everything else life throws at you. Working a job, keeping a home, remaining committed to your family and friends – these are just some of life’s workload that takes time away from your creative space. What, however, would happen if all those other aspects of your world disappeared? What if life’s distractions were no more and all the thoughts in your mind could be channeled creatively?

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Here’s What’s Really Keeping You from Taking More Photos

There may be lots of reasons why you’re not taking photos, but this is most likely what’s on top of the list

“Practice makes perfect” is still the most fitting adage for anything you want to master. Sure, it’s easy enough to say and understand. However, it can easily become an insurmountable task with the mere mention of one thing: time. When work and responsibilities start taking big chunks of your time and getting in the way of your creative projects, saying, “I don’t have the time,” becomes the norm. But, is it really the case? Is it really often impossible to make time to practice photography?

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