I know that having a consistent creative flow is very important. And in the creative field, it is very normal to find yourself stuck in this weird phase called the creative block phase. This phase might make you feel in darkness and completely stuck, and those days might also feel like you don’t know which direction to pursue as you feel lost. And if you experience this, just know that you are not alone, and even big and professional photographers face this creative block as well.
Photographers often find it difficult to gather up an idea to work on something new or ideate an existing project that you had left in your drafts to do later and never got a grip on. As a knowledgeable person, I can say that photographers are not immune to this cloudy phase of creative block. You may frequently feel like you are exhausted or have clicked enough pictures, and that is why you are running out of ideas now for your shoots, or you might just don’t feel like coming out of your cozy zone because you don’t feel motivated enough to click anything new or create something unique with your creativity.
But again, the duration of this phase is not set; it’s dynamic. It varies from photographer to photographer. Some people stay in this phase for two weeks, while some can stay in it for just two days.
Being in this phase and not recognizing that you are in it is worse than finding that you are in a creative block and not being able to do anything about it. This being a huge motivation killer, you might start resenting your gears as well as your favorite camera. If you tested positive for all the above points, don’t worry; this happens to all photographers at some point in their lives; it’s not that it will just happen to beginners. That’s why it’s important we focus on overcoming this phase, called creative block, and come back stronger by rediscovering the passion for photography.
Now let’s learn about some of the ways to deal with this creative block :
GET OUT OF YOUR BUBBLE/ COMFORT ZONE
This famous saying that we don’t learn from our success, but we learn from our mistakes! And this is very true. No matter what level your photography skill is on, if you make no mistakes, you certainly won’t be growing either. It’s nothing bad to experiment and learn, whereas experimentation is the best teacher in the field of creativity. If you don’t try out new things and give them a shot, then you will be stuck in that square one forever. So one of the effective ways to cope with the creative block phase is by experimenting with different types of ideas and inspirations. That way, you will be able to come out of your bubble, that is your comfort zone, and you will be able to explore a whole different side of your creative mind. Don’t be hesitant in trying out something opposite of your niche. And if you are loner, then this experience will e a great start for your personality development and improvised social skills as well.
SPEND TIME WITH YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER PEERS
Another easy way to deal with this kind of idea block is by hanging around your other photographer peers. What do they called it? A Photographers’ Hub, right! Whenever it gets frustrating, try to seek out for help or just a small talk with your other photographer friends. This way, you will get to know if they are going through something similar as well or not. Even if they are, you all can talk it out and bring out some interesting topics related to photography to enhance the mood and to motivate each other. Or even if not about photography, gather the techy heads and do some research based on your dream gears or any latest gear that has been launched in the market, like teamwork. This way it will keep you busy and informative. This reminds me of the quote, “Nothing goes waste.” And also after a certain point, your normal friends or family members might not understand you or your frustration, but people who are related to your field of art definitely will. So it’s only wiser to approach your photographer peers.
VOLUNTARILY TAKE A PHOTOGRAPHY CLASS
Whenever in doubt, try out professionals. I mean they are giving out photography lessons online for a reason, right? What could be the worse, you will just gain the knowledge that you already knew, but revision is always the best way to cope with creative blocks. You can find thousands of photography-related classrooms, online workshops, online classes on a specific topic in this vast field, so it’s no harm to just enroll yourself into one. Just make sure you are not sitting alone and overthink upon mere stuffs that aren’t even relevant. Taking online workshops and classes will benefit you in many ways, like learning things from a different point of view, meeting other photography students with various kinds of creative ideas, they will share some, you will share some, and that’s how you move a little from the same place where you were stuck. A online photography class will also push you to do more work and less thinking, that way you will stay busy but in a way you would want to stay.
ASSIGN A SELF PROJECT
One of the most efficient way to aid the flow of your creative juices is by giving yourself challenges. Taking upon self projects based on themes that you will follow strictly. Even if you want to change the theme, you can’t, and that is what commitment is like. Commit yourself to the idea of self-projects and challenge yourself to complete it by a certain deadline. This way you will feel like it is professional work, plus you would be in the discipline, which is very good to nurture your creativity.
NURTURE YOUR EDITING SKILLS
I have seen many photographers who face this creative block, they download raw images of certain themes or subjects that other photographers click and start applying their presets on it. This is a better way of practicing your editing skills because when it’s a raw picture from your collection, you already had a rough image of what kind of editing you would do while clicking that picture. Still, when it is somebody else’s, you wouldn’t know the configurations beforehand, so it will be fairly challenging for you to create and experiment with your editing skills.
You might feel like this is the end of the world or, to the very least, your career as a photographer when this occurs! But never let this thought get into your head because this is just a phase, and it will pass. I am sure now you have the answers to your quest. And also, don’t let this creative block be a major obstacle for you neither work yourself up heavily during these days because that will only lead to further frustration. My only goal was to help you overcome a creative block on your own and to guide you to get back on line to create more new and extraordinary images just like a pro!