Photography: Random thoughts about writing with a lens

    • Photography is a hobby for me, yet I see it as part of my writing life.
    • The time I spend thinking about a subject, taking the shots, and choosing an end result — all of it helps me to grow as a writer.
    • Have you noticed how taking photos forces you to slow down and stop thinking about yourself? That’s a healthy activity for any soul. And in that refocus, you see what you’ve missed. Put these in your stories.
    • With the advent of these wonderful machines called digital cameras, you and I can enjoy a photography hobby and not have to worry too much about expense. Back in the day, getting photos developed took a chunk out of your wallet, and many of the prints went straight to the trash can.
    • Click away until you have the shots you want. Edit until you have the looks you love. Share them. (Sounds similar to crafting stories, doesn’t it?)
    • Photoshop is a novice’s friend. Don’t fear it just because it’s used by the pros. I applied the crosshatch brush stroke to this photo for a painting effect.
    • Several story ideas come to my mind from this tulip photo: an artist who lost his arm during the war; the bouquet that was never delivered; traditional artists and their thoughts on image editing software.
    • Writers are always writing. It doesn’t matter that there’s no pen in hand or computer on desk. Our senses do the writing and keep their thoughts inside a three-pound storage center called the brain.
    • My brain is over half a century old and close to capacity, so thank God for cameras and amazing photographers like Patrick Latter.
    • I saw these on a walk home from the corner store: a tennis shoe in the road, a woman limping, an unusual house color; and a construction worker’s facial expression as he worked the drill. I wonder which of my stories will contain these images.
    • Capturing images is both a pleasure for me and an idea generator. Most of the ideas come as a surprise, though, when they spill out on paper or screen and I remember when they were first born.

You’re not wasting time when you’re working on an activity that doesn’t involve the physical act of writing. Everything you do is useful for your writing life. You just have to own that thought and put it to creative use.

What hobbies do you have that add to your writing life?


8 thoughts on “Photography: Random thoughts about writing with a lens

  1. I agree that any creative outlet is great for keeping your juices flowing – you can even switch between them if your muse in one is being stubborn.

    I wish I had a better eye and a steadier hand. Sure some technique can be learned, but certain people are naturals. My 12 yo daughter has a great eye and has taken some amazing photos.

    Your flowers are beautiful, Darla.


    1. I do love that photo — thanks, Cindy. Yes, there are those of us who have fun taking photos, and then there are photographers. As a writer, what I most care about is that I’m inspired, either by what I create or by what another has created. It comes from what you see.


  2. You always inspire me, Darla!
    Thanks for the reminder that writers don’t need a pen or a computer to be writers. On my walks I’ve started carrying my digital camera, and some wonderful prompts have been captured at the most unexpected times.


  3. Hey Darla, have left you details so you can see some of my writing. Currently trying to sort business side of things out and doing readings and linking. Actually involved with a project by National Archives in the UK called Caribbean Through a Lens to do with black and white photos taken by officials during colonial days. This triggered a short story I wrote as part of a sci-fantasy compilation which should be out next month. Looking forward … VerdanaBee


    1. Hi, Patricia — That photo project sounds so interesting. What part do you play in it? And to have a sci-fantasy story come out of a photo from colonial days — that is just what I mean. Sounds like exciting times are coming your way! I’ll be over soon to check out your writing. The business side: Just this morning I was thinking about how I need to do more posts on that side of the writing life. Thanks for the prompt!


  4. I never thought of it that way – I also enjoy my photography and I enjoy sewing, so many times I have to stop my projects to write what comes in my head! It is good to know that my mind is always working, at times it sure doesn’t feel that way!! LOL


    1. It may not feel that way — and I hear you on that! — but it’s happening. I wrote a story that took an unexpected turn when I suddenly remembered the joy I’d receive from reading to my son. The story went from a narration to a mom and son dialogue. I love when that happens.


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