Photo Tip: Unleash Your Inner Photo Genius

Artists of every persuasion -- painter, writer, sculptor, photographer or any other creative type -- all ride the roller coaster up and down when it comes to creativity. And photographers, just like other artists, go through more- and less-productive periods. It's those less-productive times I want to talk about today. Let's call it "photographer's block."

I'm writing about this today, because I see a slump in people contributing to the photo challenge… and because the only way I know to get over it and get in touch again with that creative flow of energy is to simply push through it.

So if you're not excited about taking photos right now,  I encourage you to shoot them anyway. But rather than shooting for a job, an article, an art show, stock, or even this challenge -- simply take an hour or two and go shoot for YOU.

Go out into your yard -- or farther out into the world -- and see what you find.  You might see something you haven't noticed before.  Or maybe the light will be doing something just right and you'll be able to capture it -- for no other reason than you want to.

It's in those moments that you let your creativity flow freely and any "photographers block" becomes a thing of the past.

Once you've started filling your camera back up with images that inspire you, take a look at what you've captured, and give a few of them some post-processing.

Here is a shot from this month's challenge that could have been shot in an inspired moment…

Unleash Your Inner Photo Genius

The snow, the tree all lit up, even the red of the tail lights and the green of the street light come together to give this shot a very festive, wintry feel.

With a few small adjustments in Photoshop (or Lightroom), the overly gray sky and generally washed out image could have a little more pop.  Here's an article in our archives on how to make images pop in Photoshop or Lightroom: Post Processing in Photoshop.

And here is that same image with a quick Levels and Curves adjustment in Photoshop. See how the colors jump out more now?

In the next week or two, when you have a few spare moments, grab your camera and get out there and shoot… just for fun… just for you. It could be the best gift you give yourself (or someone else) this holiday season.

Best wishes for a happy holiday season.

[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.  Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]