“Creativity is a habit. And the best creativity is the result of good work habits.” – Twyla Tharp
Being creative means I need to let my imagination flow. I need time to soak up what’s around me and see the beauty in the small moments. I crave time to unwind and recharge my battery, and obviously, that means spending time with my animals. However, I also need good work habits that I practice regularly to keep me focused and sharp. Here are my top five habits:
- Make ‘Me Time’. This is an important one, which is why it’s number one. In order to be the best me I can, I need to take time to be alone with my thoughts, and clear my head. I like to read, take a bath, go for a walk, and spending time with my horses (well, all of my animals, but there is something so soothing about horses). By quieting my mind and paying attention to what’s going on around me, I can charge my battery and face the day.
- Put down the camera. I know, that sounds counter-intuitive coming from a photographer! But, there are times when I get so worked up about getting the perfect shot that I almost get blocked. I’ve found that the ideas will come to me when I least expect it. So, when I can put down my camera, walk away and refocus, I have a better chance of letting the creativity flow.
- Keep Notes. Whether it’s a notepad, snapping a photo of a picture I like with my phone, creating folder on my computer, or an old-school manila folder where I clip images and stash for a later time, keeping notes of things that inspire me has been a helpful tool for creativity. When I see something, I try to file it, and then I’ll revisit at a later time when I need inspiration. I’ve found that if I let it go, it’ll come to me.
- Back It Up– Technology has made our lives easier, except when it deletes important files. So my rule of thumb is back up all your data and back it up often! You never know what will happen. I had an experience when I lost precious images from a session because of a bad flash drive. If that happens once, it’s one time too many. If you spend the money on good equipment, you should make sure one of those items is a good back up drive. Don’t take chances.
- Share your images. This one can be difficult sometimes, because you are opening yourself up for opinions, and being vulnerable, but I’ve found that it’s helpful to share images and get feedback. You can put them on blog, an Instagram or Facebook page, or show close friends and family your prints. There are also online photography sharing sites which can be helpful. Getting opinions and constructive feedback can be a great learning tool. Sometimes it can sting, but it can also better yourself.
These are some habits that I practice on a regular basis. They’ve helped me and I hope they can help you too!