I have spent some time the last couple of weeks trying to do some extra reading on photography forums and blogs. Now seems to be a somewhat slow period for my photography. Not a no period just slowed down a bit from the autumn rush where one can not find enough time to be out shooting the magnificent fall landscape.

I’ve been trying to find a way to stay inspired and to continue to grow in my photography. I have found a few new blog sites that have really helped with this such as David duChemin’s PixelatedImage Blog. I seem to really like reading his writings and thoughts not because he is a nature photographers per say, but because he is not a nature photographer. It’s a different point of view from a different genre of photography. I am realizing in order to grow one must reach beyond there comfort level and be willing to experience new thoughts and ideas.

Being a member and avid participant of the Nature Photographers Network I read a post provided by Scott Bean about the upcoming Great Plains Nature Photographers annual meeting this weekend. It was a reply by Tim Ernst that kind of got me thinking. Tim mentioned his association with this years speaker Boyd Norton. He mention some advice he had received from Boyd some years ago pointing out how photographers need to “shoot local” and build on their strengths such as getting to know your own backyard before running out into the wild blue yonder in search of the great iconic landscapes that so many photographers seem to think are must have shots in order to possibly find success. That really made sense to me and seems to be something so obvious yet so easily overlooked.

That led me to come up with a new project (like I really need more projects) but I feel this is important in many ways. The simple project I have come up with is, shoot local and shoot something everyday. This isn’t about capturing a great photo but more about practice and growth. The subject makes no difference the point is to just do it. Don’t get bogged down in how something is going to look but to shot it because I normally wouldn’t. To give much more thought to seeing it as a photograph instead of just an object as I casually walk by or have come to take for granted.

Sounds easy enough, (that part is what scares me), my plan is to keep my trusty little point and shoot camera with me most of the time. Especially when I take my daily walk with Lexi, our beloved, beautiful, smart, lovable Lhasa Apso. Now the plan is to not just take pics of Lexi but of anything that seems to strike my fancy. Lexi just seems to strike me on a regular basis. So I’m sure there will be a good share of her here as well. But then again this is about shooting what I’m Not comfortable with and wouldn’t normally.

As I sat down here this morning and loaded a few of my first daily pics into photoshop I realized there can be another aspect to this as well. Working up images in an unconventional manner such as hdr’s black and whites or what ever I seem to think I want to do at the time. Basically to develop more skills with my processing of images as well but to keep things easy, quick and simple.

I am excited about working on this. I’m excited every time I get an idea that may help with my growth as a photographer. After all, what’s life without learning.