Finding Inspiration For Photos

Hyde Park Village Brick Wall Potrait


It's one of the most important things that drive photographers to constantly hone their skills. Surprisingly I've heard from some saying that inspiration gets in a way of developing their own style but in actuality, it helps you get closer to it. Whether you really dig this one photographer's work on Instagram or you're just constantly drawn to a certain place's aesthetics, you honestly will never run out of places to draw inspiration from to take photos.

Why do I bring this up? Recently while having a conversation with one of my photographer friends, we both came to the consensus that a lot of new aspiring photographers (who we may or may not know) tend to always bring up the issue of not knowing what to take pictures of. I'm just going to put this out there but... That's complete bullshit. 

You're just being lazy with your creativity. 

Don't Be Lazy!

You're not always going to have obvious subjects nor will those be the only things that will be camera worthy. You need to learn to develop a good eye to seek out possible subjects and how they can be framed into something appealing. Street photography is actually one good example where these skills are very very important. Unlike a planned photoshoot, you don't know what to expect when you're in a public setting taking pictures of subjects. But even with a planned photo shoot, sometimes it can become discouraging because there might be certain variables that are not in your favor. Anything can happen, but that's a good thing! All this forces you to actively learn to create pictures in your head before you even bring the viewfinder up to your eye. A good photographer is able to thrive in even the worst situations presented to them. If your photos aren't that stellar at first, that's ok! My photos were complete crap at first but boy did it motivate me to take even more. Just always maintain that constant drive where you're improving, and becoming more streamline with your creative process.  

© Casper Yen
© Casper Yen

So What Should You Do?

One word of advice I always try to adhere by is TAKING YOUR CAMERA EVERYWHERE YOU GO (or at least when it's convenient). If you do so, you'll start to develop a sense of what kind of things you like to capture. A good portion of my favorite photos have been from moments where I just happened to have my camera on me. Never think of carrying your camera with you as a hassle but as an extension of your body. My Canon 5D III always accompanies me on all of my outings, whether it be just me chilling with my friends or checking out a new place. You can even encourage your friends to come with you and maybe even take some photos of them if they're not camera shy. Also don't always go the same places, mix things up! There have been times where I've drove past a place multiple times to finally check it out to discover great photo opportunities while learning something about the place. If you've read my "Who's Hong Kong Willie?" post then you'll know what I'm talking about. Never let your curiosity go to waste! Maybe you've always wondered how certain photographers take their photos, why not try to take your own spin on it? I can go on and on but it's ultimately up to your own will to get up and get shooting. You spent good money on that camera so letting it collect dust on your desk would be quite a shame.

Note that even the simplest things can become interesting subjects. I mean, just look at the minion picture below that I took while sitting in a boba tea shop. Never overlook something just because it seems "dull" or "boring". Play around with it, you'll be surprised by what you can do.

© Casper Yen

© Casper Yen