What really stuck with me was something she said at the very beginning: creating boundaries for yourself can improve your creativity. It sounds completely counter-intuitive, but I found out it actually works the same way for me as well.
Complete freedom may seem like a dream-come-true, but I work best when I narrow down the subjects I’ll shoot and, thus, the different possibilities.
I attended the Academy for applied art until a month ago when I majored and we always had tasks and projects we needed to complete, be it a logo for a wine institute or repurposing old stuff. When these boundaries were set by the project and the options limited not only in creative terms, but also in technical terms (printing, size, colour etc.), you had to push yourself harder to think about a solution that would not only visually look good, but one that would also follow the project’s brief.
I tend to do the same with my own personal projects!
I either pick a theme, an item, a subject, an feeling, a colour, an atmosphere, an ambient, a dream, an idea – and start conceptualizing and translating it into visuals.
For example, last year I was listening to Dead Man’s Bones album and wanted to do a series of photos about ghosts. I wanted them to be more our own alter-egos than ‘ghosts’ in the typical sense, so I created concepts around that main idea. Then I picked my model, Iva, because I could see her fit in the story. It was autumn at that time and her hair went really well with the colourful leaves in the park that also helped create a slightly moody atmosphere.
So, what can you do to creatively set boundaries?
1. Pick something that you’ve got an interest in, be it a dress, a book, or a leaf pattern
2. Think about all the things you can do with it and write them down
3. Narrow down the better options
4. SHOOT. Don’t give up just because you think it might not work out well!
Does this sort of thing work out for you? Let me know in the comments below!
About the author
Hi! I’m Isabella and I’m a photographer, blogger and applied arts graduate. I love spending my time creatively, or watching movies, drinking tea, playing with my cats and hanging out with friends.
Find me here isabellabubola.com or on Facebook and say hello!