Having Other Hobbies
Photography is quite an investment. You have to put time and money into it on some degree, and if you want to get serious, you’re going to have to dedicate yourself quite a bit. However, I really think that photography shouldn’t be your only hobby.
The reason for that is that it can become very consuming. Even if you’re not doing photography on a paid/professional level, you may find yourself, as I did, having practically no other interests than photography. If you’ve reached that point, take a step back. Remember that you can take and make photos all you want. You don’t have to create every day! Or at least, you don’t have to take a lot of photos on the day to day. I create on average I would say about 10 photos per day, and that’s only for my serious projects. That doesn’t include family photos, and photos I just take for the sake of taking. However, more recently I would say that I’ve actually been shooting less for my projects. As a project photographer, that put me off at first. But I realized that I’m just settling into a more natural rhythm for my photography. Ever since I made the shift to include digital in my photography, I just haven’t felt as much pressure to create, create, create. I just create when I feel or can find inspiration. And there’s a subtle difference to be seen there: rather than constantly looking for photos, I’m more often looking for inspiration, and that sometimes leads to photos.
As a result of this more slowed “rate of creation,” I find myself having a bit more time to give to other hobbies. Personally, I’ve devoted a lot more time and thought to marksmanship; I shoot bows and slingshots. And that in turn has led me to realize that having other things to be interested in, especially just on a whim, is extremely helpful. And this really becomes especially true when you start to get more serious about your photography, because as that happens, if you’re anything like me you’ll start to get burnt out making photos and therefore frustrated that you’re not creating what you feel you want to create.
So saying something that feels very contrary to the point of a photography centric blog, put the camera down! Grow a plant. Learn to cook. Make jewelry. Go running or hiking. Maybe do what I did and pick up a slingshot or a bow and learn to shoot. But do something else than photography, and do it JUST because you want to. It can benefit you in ways you never imagined! And when you stop doing whatever it is you decided to do for the day, pick up your camera again. I think you’ll find your creative mind refreshed and you might even have new ideas for photos that you never would have thought of.