Inspiration. What is it? Where to find it?
Today, I just wanted to share a little bit about how I incorporate inspiration into my photo sessions.
Well, music, let’s start with music, shall we? Music is incredibly inspiring. Did you get my The Who reference in my title? Actually, I’m not a huge fan of The Who, but I digress. Album covers inspire me – oh, how I loved to hold those 12″vinyl records as kid and look at album covers. I still have loads of records at my parents’ home – most of that vinyl was theirs to begin with. Check out the lighting on this Beatles album cover. I love it!
Sometimes a song lyric inspires me. Paul Weller’s song “Country” has a lyric that I incorporated in one of my photo shoots last year. ”I know a place not far from here/Where fresh cut grass will fill your hair.” I photographed two sisters and had them they lie on the grass, picking petals off of daisies and blowing dandelion weeds.
I find inspiration in magazines, adverts that come via mail, cereal boxes. Inspiration, anywhere and everywhere. Sometimes I like a color combo, sometimes it is a prop that is featured in the image, sometimes it is a landmark, sometimes it is a scene. Skateboards, a dog on a leash, a traffic cop, an ice-cream sundae, kissing, the color orange, a beach towel, lemonade. All of these small, disjointed ideas can be a spring board to a great concept, a greater theme. This is partially how I incorporate themes and props into my concept shoots. I always, always involve the family that I’m photographing into the process – “My son likes to climb trees.” ”My daughter is great with the hula hoop.” ”We read a lot as a family.” ”We are outdoorsy.” These are ideas that will be developed so that the photo shoot is representative of the family.
I’m a big record keeper. I love to journal and make lists. I have a notebook and pen with me at all times. The other day, my friend saw me scribbling madly into my notebook while I waited for my 1st grader to come out of his classroom at the end of the day. ”Mind dumping, eh?” she said to me. Hahaha! Yes, indeed.
Here is a small collage of what my Inspiration Notebook looks like. You will see one of the images has a few wooden musical instruments strewn about the notebook. Since we are a very musical/music-loving family, we used these very instruments in our own family pics last year.
INSPIRATION! What is yours?