Over the years, I’ve certainly been a victim of the dreaded photography rut, a feeling that comes from some mixture of:

  1. “I have nothing to photograph.”
  2. “I have no one to photograph.”
  3. “Every photo I take lacks creativity.”
  4. “I need better equipment.”
  5. All of the above, or some combination of countless others reasons why we doubt our work…

row of mailboxes photograph by Allison Zercher

My personal cure for such a rut is to occasionally get into my car and take a drive with my camera in tow.  I’ll even gather up a few lenses and shove them into my bag and drive off with no particular place in mind as my destination.  I simply call this a “photo adventure,” and I’ve been known to be gone for hours, by myself, checking in now and then with my husband so he knows I’m perfectly fine, just wandering.  I don’t typically venture far, but far enough that perhaps I’ll happen upon something I’ve never seen before that looks interesting to photograph:  an old barn, some sort of architectural masterpiece, a pretty, open field.

no parking sign photo by Allison Zercher

Not only does this help me push through a slump in creativity, it’s also a great way to scout for new locations for possible future shoots.  Some of my most favorite spots to photograph my children and shoot other portrait work have been found on such an adventure.

If you’re feeling in a photography rut, go take a drive and see what you might find.  If you’re like me, it’ll be therapeutic and it’ll possibly help expand your list of shoot locations nearby!

woman sitting on steps pic by Allison Zercher

shoes on a telephone wire photograph by Allison Zercher

palm trees in California picture by Allison Zercher

market sign with grafitti wall pic by Allison Zercher

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