Over the last few weeks, life has got in the way of shooting. I, like many of my fellow photographers, do this as a hobby, and have a day job to support the photography.
We are at that funny time of year where it gets lighter later and darker earlier, and the perfect time to go out shooting is probably the time when you’re at your desk, grafting away to fund that next photography trip(Unless you are lucky enough to do this full time, then good on ya!) . Here are a few pointers to squeeze in a bit of photography during the day.
Get up earlier.
Are you one of these people who get up at the very last minute, and try to squeeze in those extra minutes of sleep? Why not go to bed a little earlier, get up an hour before you normally would, get out for sunrise and catch a few shots on the way to work.
Waking up that bit earlier is not only good for capturing an image in great light, but it also gives you time to prepare for the day, get your mind in check before the stress kicks in and you also miss the morning traffic on the commute. A win all round.
There is not only a bonus of seeing the best light early in the morning, but you also see a different world. A town or city in the first light can be an amazing place, with the peace and quiet before the world comes alive, the wildlife in the country can be seen before they retreat into their burrows and nests. It has to be experienced.
Try an alternate mode of transport or a different route to work.
In the mad rush to get to work, we tend to find the most convenient or the quickest route to work. Why not try a different route to scope out new locations or use the bus instead of the car and get off a few stops before work, so that you can check out a few places on the walk. It’s amazing what you’ll find when you start walking and it is something I do quite often.
Are you one of the many hundreds of thousands out there that have their lunch (Dinner if you’re up north!) at their desks, or in a drab canteen. Why not take your camera to work or use the one camera you have with you all the time, yes your mobile phone. Have a walk around the block for 20 minutes, see what you can capture in that time?
Getting a break from the desk or the factory floor during the day is not only good for the photography muscles but its also good for the body and mind. So get out and take those images.
Get off the sofa and nip out at night.
There is always that temptation after a tiring day at work, to get on the sofa and watch that soap opera or that football match, spending the whole evening in front of the telly. Why not take an hour away from the telly and go out for sunset with the camera. Not only is it good for the mind but can be a good form of exercise and can be a great relief from that busy and stressful day.
You’re probably screaming at the screen and saying “Mike, it goes dark early at this time of the year in the UK and it’s probably dark when I get home”. There are opportunities to shoot in the dark. The neon lights of the city, the street lights of the urban environment, the dark streets of the town where you live and don’t forget the world of Astrophotography. The opportunities are there if you go out an look, and you’ll never find them from the sofa.
Now you have made time, not sure what to shoot?
Now you have read the first part of this blog and figured out a time you can slot in a few minutes to capture some images. You’re probably stuck on what to shoot. Here are a few ideas.
Keep notes on interesting things you see.
Have you ever been driving or on the train and noticed an interesting tree on the side of the road? Don’t have the time to shoot it at the moment? Keep a record of this for the time that you can. Write it in a book, note it on Google Maps, take a quick phone shot for reference or just keep a mental record if you’re good at this. Safely, of course, stop and pull over if your driving.
Pick a theme.
Having a theme to shoot can be a great inspiration. I even wrote about this in the blog last week. This can be anything you choose, people at lunch and street lamps at night are a couple of examples. Always have a bit of a plan, but ultimately have fun.
I hope this helps to find a little time in your busy schedule to get out there and shoot some images. Let me know how you get on on the comments or on my Twitter page. Happy shooting!