One of the best ways for me to create my most powerful work is often just led through curiosity.
Generally, I think there are a lot of makers that think that you need to plan everything down to the last prop before shooting. That can be so helpful with sets that are a large investment, either through time or finances, and I’ve found it to be incredibly helpful for my bigger ideas! However, many of my highest-scoring images in competition, and also best client sales, have come from starting with a model, a general idea of where I’d like to take the session or the story itself….and just letting it flow.
My studio is filled with random bits of collections. Flowers, fabrics, antiques, tools, it’s a total menagerie of lost things. And honestly, it is so much FUN. I love walking through antique stores with headphones and waiting until something catches my eye. Items that pull your focus are calling out for you to ask “I see what you were used for, how can I create something with you now?”
Next time, when a session starts to feel a little deflated for you, see what random items you can pull in from around your studio. Are there newborn wraps you can use as a couture halter top? How could this ball of twine be changed in size to dwarf the model? What would it look like if we added a live animal?
Ask questions. Be curious. Having a plan is wonderful, but don’t limit yourself to what you originally set out to accomplish. The greatest art comes from curiosity!