Do you get "dark periods" in photography?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by TamiyaGuy, Nov 22, 2008.

  1. TamiyaGuy

    TamiyaGuy No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Hey, this is just a little rant of me, so reply or don't reply, whatever :).

    Recently I've been on quite a few trips out to take some photographs, probably two or three in the past month and a bit. I've taken photo after photo after photo in different locations, but I just feel that they're all mediocre. They don't stand out, they don't have that "wow" factor. I just feel really disappointed in myself, to be honest. I've even thought about giving it up sometimes.

    I don't know what it is. There was a time where I pretty much looked at every photo I took and thought it was fantastic, but now they're all "meh". Is it just because I've spent too long looking at my work, or are they actually kinda... well... crappy? Here is some of my "best" work from recently, it'd be interesting to see if you guys agree with me. If you don't, why don't you? Does it need cropping? Post-processing? A different composition? Or is it just a bad subject?

    Thanks for looking, all. I can't wait for your feedback. (The images are small because I realise that this isn't a gallery)

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  2. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    yep definatly get dark spots (usually every time it gets overcast when I go out) you are not alone with that.
    Something I find helps is setting my screensaver to scrolling images and point it right at my photos folder so that it goes through everything - including the unprocessed RAWs, dud shots and more. I find it helps to remind me the good shots I have taken, the bad shots and also the surprising "hey did I really take that one?" shots. Reminds me that there are good and bad times :)


    I must say I like 2 though I agree with Alex's comment about adding some more contrast to give it that little bit of extra punch
     
  3. deanimator

    deanimator TPF Noob!

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    @ Overread: Nice tip about the screensaver...might try it myself.

    Another couple of tips:
    * when was the last time you wandered around a good exhibition...or museum of photography? Do it...be inspired.
    * Give yourself a new type of personal project: Only B&W, or 24 hours of your own life, or photograph EVERYONE you meet, or make a documentary about the riding school in the next village, or the moslems in your town. A new challenge...and be serious about it. Organise a small but serious exhibition with the results.

    Spend a day listening to music, bake a cake, paint a picture, get an old dude to tell you his story and write it all down...there´s a lot of stuff to do that can restart your creativity.

    Good luck
     
  4. anubis404

    anubis404 TPF Noob!

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    I get those too, where it seems like no matter what I shoot its not very impressive, but I always come out of them. One of my other problems is that I'm quite busy during the Winter and Fall with school, and I don't have a job because I'm too busy. This leaves me with limited time and money to do photography and go anywhere. Life is pretty static in the suburbs, and anything that I though was interesting to photograph already has been. I sometimes go months without picking up my camera.

    However in addition to that, I do sometimes have "dark spots".
     
  5. laam999

    laam999 TPF Noob!

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    I think everyone gets them, I´m just comin out of one now, I really find setting yourself a callange ortrying to enter some comps online etc makes you thin with purpose more than just "I have a cam I should take pics" I carry my cam everywhere out of habit but sometimes wish I didn't. Just have a day or 2 off, set yourself a target and then post it all here. Make a gllery here with you're reults, have the challange be something new, finding them online I find helps.
     
  6. Alleh Lindquist

    Alleh Lindquist TPF Noob!

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    Don't stress about it. It's just popular these days to do photography and want to be great at it. If painting was the in thing would you expect everyone to be even decent at it? I think not. Photography is an art form some of it can be learned the rest is a gift.

    If you really consider giving up photography because you think your work is of low quality then maybe you don’t really love photography and not to be cliché but love the idea of it. I often am very critical of my work and wonder if I will ever achieve the skill level of the people I look up to as photographers but I use it to push myself every time I pick up my camera.
     
  7. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Hey, I have those settings for my screen saver, too, and sometimes enjoy just looking at the "random slide show" it offers me, and I specifically like the moments you're also describing (which I am quoting now), the "hey, did I really take that one?"-moments when I am surprised at how nice I find this or the other photo of mine :D . I usually then (for those three seconds) plan to dig it up and show it to you here on TPF, and three seconds later, the thought's been forgotten ... :er:

    But hey, yes, I constantly go through "dark periods", and my work not only SEEMS mediocre then, but IS mediocre. With a tendency to "bad"! Those moments can even become fairly LONG ... which I then begin to find worrisome! But then there's a new location, a new challenge, a new inspiration, a new light situation, and ... it sometimes work that I manage to produce the odd pleasing photo again...
     
  8. passerby

    passerby TPF Noob!

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    Shoot the objects that you love to shoot. Don't press the button except for someone or something that you like. If the result is not satisfactory - re shoot it.

    Anything that you love is precious. My pictures are precious for me. They are taken by me and for my enjoyment, nothing else.

    If you are a professional photographer you may just ignore all above.
     
  9. TamiyaGuy

    TamiyaGuy No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks for all the comments, people. It's just nice to know that I'm not alone here; I don't know of anyone nearby that is into photography, so it's nice to hear it from fellow photographers. I really like the idea of setting myself little challenges, and I've thought of a couple already. I'll be sure to post them on TPF if and when I get round to doing it :). And Anubis, I know how you feel. Even though I don't have the normal workload of school, I have quite a bit to do before I can relax for the holidays, but that's life :D.

    And to Alleh, I think I just got a little depressed there. I know I love photography, what it means to me and others, but I just get... well, dark spots :p. Also, Alex, what do you mean that #3 looks a bit boring "in terms of perspective"? I know there's something not quite right about it, but I can't put my finger on it. Is it a bad angle? Needs more cropping?

    Right, now all I need is a pipette, a piece of black card and a rose.... Thanks again, guys. I'm feeling better already.
     
  10. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  11. sarahgolding@photographer

    sarahgolding@photographer TPF Noob!

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    Hey i've recently moved out of essex and joined a photography club in manc. There's bound to be one near chelmsford. Join it! Mine is full of retired old men but there's so much to learn and get inspired from. And being in the minority of a younger girl, they're all very nice and helping me with my photography business!
     
  12. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I faild to notice that one the first time by.....because I have a dozen just like it...I wish I knew what I was thinkin, or if I was even thinking.
     

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