One of the simplest ways to invite creativity into your life is to shift your perspective. When considering photography or any type of storytelling, (movies, books, cartoons) how to change perspective seems simple and obvious, but how would this point of view change play out in our day to day lives? Start by using a tool that most of us carry with us everywhere we go: the cell phone and its camera.
Instead of waiting for perfect photo opportunities to appear, begin by taking pictures of everything. After all, saving your camera for special occasions doesn’t make sense when you realize that every moment of your life could be celebrated as a special occasion.
Select the most mundane items you can think of to photograph: the dishes stacked in the sink or dishwasher, the front door of your apartment or house, a squirrel in a tree, a single leaf on the ground, a person waiting for a bus. Take pictures from as many different angles as you can.
Try to take pictures from as close as possible, and then step back, way back, and snap it from a distance. Walk closer, and take another photo at a middle distance, too. Walk around any subjects that you can, shoot from beneath and above as well. When you find yourself up against a wall, tree, or gate, photograph that too.
The last phase of the program is perhaps its most enlightening. Examine the pictures at your leisure, perhaps taking notes, too, if that seems appropriate. At the end of each day, scroll through and look for repeating images or themes. Ask questions about them and try not to make judgments. What draws your attention? Are certain colors or textures popping up? Are the images light, dark, filled with activity and people, or have you focused upon specific places or things?
By noticing the small details in our lives, we live in each moment more fully and inhabit our days more completely. We learn to judge less and consider more, and by offering ourselves a new ways of viewing the world, we engage in purposeful and noble work. We also invite new and different ideas to fill our minds and inspire us. This increased engagement with the world around us, this way of being more present, is much more fun and invigorating.
In essence, this is what artists do: offer the world different points of view, and thus, a larger, more generous and beautiful place to live.