Beyond The Campfire was created to encourage readers to explore the great outdoors and to observe it close up. Get out and take a hike, go fishing or canoeing, or simply stretch out on a blanket under a summer sky...and take your camera along. We'll talk about combining outdoor activities with photography. We'll look at everything from improving your understanding of the basics of photography to more advanced techniques including things like how to see photographically and capturing the light. We'll explore the night sky, location shoots, using off camera speedlights along with nature and landscape. Grab your camera...strap on your hiking boots...and join me. I think you will enjoy the adventure.

The Dark Horse Region

The Dark Horse Region
A View into the center of the Milky Way

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Creating Extraordinary Visions Part 3 - Find a Purpose for Your Photography

Great Photography demands the photographer to find a purpose for his photography. What I mean by this is, if you approach photography by always relying on random chance to capture great images, you will seriously handicap your ability to capture extraordinary images. By focusing on a purposeful direction you will greatly enhance your chances of discovering extraordinary opportunities.

Purposeful photography eliminates much of the guess work. It provides a reason for your efforts. These efforts can be pointed in multiple directions at the same time. I start and complete projects all the time. sometimes I will have several projects going at the same time. Projects can run for just about any length of time, from a single day, weekend, a month or longer. My longest running project was a year long effort to photograph one of my favorite locations, Shanty Hollow Lake. It was a difficult challenge but at the same time provided me with some spectacular opportunities and it ran concurrently with other shorter duration projects. All of these provided a measure of focus for what I wanted to accomplish both artisitically and personally.

One of the elements I was able to employ was the concept of always photographing to inspire. Random shooting rarely helps you create or find inspiration. However, random shooting does have its merits in that it might help you discover a purpose. I've actually done this by simply heading out with no real agenda to run across an opportunity that jump started an idea. Once I defined the project purpose, I was able to focus in on specific elements I wanted to accomplish. By doing so, instead of capturing simple snap shots of things I began to look for those moments that creatively defined the intent of the project.

Creating a purpose for your photography will in time stimulate your creative instincts and elevate your photography to higher level.

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