Finding Inspiration With The iPad Camera


Trees in FogCredit: morgue fileArtists and creative thinkers have many sources of inspiration. To keep the ideas flowing, they might use new experiences, daydreaming, travel, or observations. Sometimes people who work in the arts and other creative fields suffer from idea overload, and others suffer the dreaded down times when inspiration seem to dry up. I found a simple activity that clears my creative path and sends me back to work feeling invigorated.


The Artist's Date

In her book, The Artist's Way, Julia Cameron stresses the Peeling PaintCredit: morgue fileneed for "Artist's Dates." These are set times when we can go somewhere alone and experience something new. These "dates" can fill our creative wells with fresh ideas and outlooks. And, you don't have to consider yourself an artist to go on that date. Anyone can!

Take your iPad For a Walk

I'm not a photographer, so photography is a great mini-vacation for me. But I am not going to spend money and time buying expensive equipment, and I don't feel comfortable asking to borrow someone else's equipment, plus I don't know much about using fancy cameras, anyway. Enter the iPad camera. My iPad is ready anytime. We can march out the door without a backpack full of accessories. And I don't need to download a bunch of photos onto my computer when I get back. I can easily dump what I don't want, either on the spot (not statue headCredit: morgue filesrecommended) or when I return home.

I have walked out the front door and taken photos of snails and flowers and out the back to shoot mushrooms in the forest. I've taken breaks at work to shoot architectural elements in town, and at lunch in the park I've caught great shots of people and pets. My biggest suggestion is to take several shots at different angles and views.

Back Home

When you return home, you can edit your experiments, choosing your favorites. You can email them to your desk computer and further edit them, or print them out 'as is.' You can study them for design and composition, or you can journal with them noting things like what happened on your walk, what the weather was like that day, how you were feeling, what surprised you, or any special things you noticed.

You can use your photos to jump-start poetry or prose. You can add quotations on your prints, frame them, and send them out as gifts. Or you can use them in your blog.

trees looking upCredit: morgue filesUsing the iPad camera as a tool to spark creative ideas has become a favorite art date for me. One that takes little time or forethought, yet yields great results in clearing the cobwebs and chatter in my sometimes overactive brain. And I recommend anyone taking their iPad on a date, you'll be surprised how many ideas can come to you.