Creativity Exercise: One Still Life Subject, All Day
This week we're going to work on still life - meaning you get to give your kids and spouses a break!
Choose an object or a certain spot in your home and take an image of that same thing/spot every hour of the day for a full day. One Subject, All Day. Obviously you might miss a few hours if you go out (no need to be house bound for this!), but try your best to get a shot every hour you are home, making sure that you're capturing the major points of the day - before sunrise (if you're awake!), morning, afternoon, dusk, after dark. If you spend the day at work you can always bring your camera for the day and use something at your office instead of at your house. (Tell your co-workers you're being EXTRA creative that day!).
This should be done without manipulating the object, but you have all the freedom in the world to move around the space. Take notice of how the light changes throughout the day, how shadows fall, how your object is illuminated. Feel free to use artificial light (lamp, flashlight, overhead light, etc) if you need to.
Photographing still life allows you to slow down and really observe everything and to think about the image you want to make before pressing the shutter. It doesn't move, make silly faces, ask for snacks while you’re shooting or run away...it's the perfect subject!
Think about how you can make the images look different by using your angles and the available light throughout the day. There's no better way to notice light than to watch as it changes throughout the day. Light you may have never noticed in the past will take on new life when you pay attention to it. The colour of the light changes, the intensity, the highlights, the shadows, the flare....it's amazing how one small space in your home can look completely different at different times of the day.
If you're stumped on what to choose here are a few ideas:
- A vase of flowers on your countertop
- A corner of your bedroom that has something in it (a chair, a dresser with jewellery, etc)
- Your desk
- The kitchen sink
- Your bathroom vanity
- An end table
- A house plant
- Your car in the driveway
- An apple or mug on the countertop
Try this exercise as many times as you can this week using a different subject/spot. See how the light changes in different parts of your home and how the weather affects the light. Even on an overcast day, you still have highlights and shadows that change throughout the day, as does the brightness of light, so there is still a lot to observe.
We’d love to see your still life images so be sure to tag us on IG with #unscriptedmentoring. Have a great week shooting!