Zen for photographers

London_window_displayThis picture was taken in London’s Jermyn Street. Dominated by men’s outfitters, the street is best known for its great selection of formal shirts.

When I worked in that part of London, I moved with a camera as often as possible. Finding interesting subject matter wasn’t a problem – the challenge was to keep an open mind and fresh eyes. I must have passed this shop dozens of times without giving it a second thought. I was so used to rushing past on the way to the office that my eyes had become jaded.

Why didn’t I walk straight past this time? Because something was different. The mannequin and stuffed dog had been moved and soft, early morning light fell on them.

How can we be more observant and creative, more often? Long before the invention of cameras, Buddha urged people to live in the present. It’s easier said than done, but it was sound advice. That morning in Jermyn Street, the new shop display jerked me out of a daydream. For a while I managed to live in the present and look at my surroundings as if I hadn’t seen them before.

Routine can be the death of curiosity and creative living. If you’re feeling blocked, try varying a routine. Don’t be too ambitious at first. For example, if you catch a bus to work, get off a stop sooner than usual and walk the rest of the way – and don’t forget your camera.

For more ideas and tips, try reading Creative unblocking : morning pages and Photographer’s block.

Finally, I wish you a creative week and look forward to hearing how you get on.

2 Responses to “Zen for photographers”
  1. Eliot Taylor says:
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