The Importance Of Trying Something New In Photography

Getting stuck in a creative rut is the pits.  It can be a helpless feeling with seemingly no end in sight when you feel like your creative juices have just stopped flowing.  Just when you are about to toss your camera into the river you think back to an article you read on, remember?  You should, you’re doing it right now…

JMB_3114-PanoIf I’ve said it once I’ve said it a million times (actually probably like 20), getting out of your comfort zone and trying new things does nothing but help your photography.  Each time I try something new and different I learn something I didn’t already know…  Makes sense, right?

I’m in the process of completing a Photo 365 project, where you take a new photograph each day, and I’ve been learning all sorts of new things and trying things I wouldn’t otherwise try.  The shot at the top of the article is the type of shot I normally take, the panorama below that is the “something new” I’m talking about.

About The Shot

The goal here was to communicate not only the beautiful city scene in the distance but also give the viewer some context, let them feel as if they are standing right next to me and looking out through the hole in the fence.  Did I succeed?

Panoramic images can be tricky to combine in post processing and require a large time commitment, both in taking the frames needed and then post processing.  For this image I used 7 frames and that was the quick and easy version.  I’m in the process of combining 12 frames to create the same panoramic image but by stacking an additional 5 frames where the light trails are I’m able to fill out the spots where the trails start and stop.

Each frame was about 8 seconds long and I used the Nikon Df and the NIKKOR 35mm f/2D lens on a tripod with mirror lock-up.  I used auto focus to grab focus about a quarter of the way through the frame and then switched to manual focus to avoid having to reset focus each time.  I chose a quarter of the way through the frame because I didn’t feel like calculating the hyper-focal distance (an equation photographers use to maximize sharpness throughout the image).

Next time you head out with your camera try something new.  If you’ve never done a panorama then give it a try.  Time-lapse?  Try it out.  HDR?  Give it a whirl.  Macro?  Why not?  The more you experiment the better your photography will get…  I promise.

Feel free to share your comments in the comment section below and share your images with us on the PhotolisticLife Facebook page.


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