If you’re a photographer, you probably know how frustrating it is to be stuck in a creative rut. Have you ever been stuck scrolling through Instagram or Pinterest for hours looking for inspiration, and finding nothing? Me too. And it’s rough. Here are three places I turn to for inspiration when nothing seems to be doing it for me.
Open a cookbook.
Cookbooks are full of polished, professional imagery. When Instagram just isn’t doing it for me, I love to flip through a cookbook and bookmark pages with images that capture my eye.
I was recently gifted "The Last Course" by Claudia Fleming. It was full of beautiful images of fruity desserts, and it inspired me to bake and photograph this cinnamon apple babka.
Look for photography challenges on Instagram.
Many food photographers host photography challenges on Instagram for their followers to participate in. Usually they will provide a prompt for the challenge (for example, "Christmas-themed photos" or "photos with steam"), and a hashtag for you to use on whatever photo you submit for the prompt. Some of these challenges will really make you think outside of the box, others will help you brush up on a photography skill. And if the photo you hashtag for the challenge wins, you will often get a prize or some free Instagram exposure.
If you follow photographers on Instagram, watch their stories to see if they are hosting any challenges. Here are some accounts I recommend looking out for:
This was my entry for @foodtographyschool's #fsdripdrizzledust challenge on Instagram. For this challenge, participants had to capture some type of movement in an image.
Let your food inspire you.
Sometimes when I don’t know what to shoot, I’ll just take a walk through a grocery store or farmer’s market looking for beautiful food to inspire me. Sometimes I’ll find some gorgeous produce or a unique food product, and ideas will just start flowing from there!
One weekend this past summer I stumbled upon the most beautiful red currants at the farmer's market, and they inspired this photo!