Five Day Photo Challenge: Day 5

Author's Note: This post originally appeared on the Unique Photo Blog.

Dragonfly, Indonesia. Photograph by Shikhei Goh (via National Geographic)

Today’s Challenge: Learn Something New

“Wait, wasn’t that the goal all along? What have you been making us do these past five days? I want my money back!” That’s what I envision you saying when you read today’s challenge. First of all, if you paid anything to participate in this challenge, someone is ripping you off. I certainly couldn’t charge for something like this. Secondly, yes, the purpose of this challenge was to make you experiment with your photography, to practice creativity, and to have a fun (long) weekend project to do. But today’s challenge employs the previous four to a certain extent. Isn’t there one style of photography you’ve been itching to try but never got around to learning the basics of it? Macro, maybe, or camera toss? Today is your day to sit yourself down and learn.

The photo above looks like the photographer sat out in a storm to capture his subject soaking on a twig. No, actually Mr. Goh had a friend spray water lightly on the dragonfly to simulate rain. See? Technique! And now for the fun part… Take this new-found knowledge you’ve gained and bring it to a new location. In fact, bring a friend, too. If you’re there, chances are pretty good that you already switched up your style, so why not change the tone around a bit? See what I did there?

I hope my Five Day Photo Challenge has done what I originally intended it to do. If at all this weekend, you’ve exercised your creativity in one way or another because of a post you’ve read here, then I’ve done my job. My true end goal was to aid in building a strong photographic community with fresh ideas. To me, there’s nothing quite like learning from people that inspire you someway. Networking and interacting with other creatives is an extremely powerful way to A) Drive you to do bigger, more interesting projects, and B) Learn something new, whether you or your “teacher” knows it or not. Whether you’re professionally trained with an MFA in photography or an iPhoneographer who exclusively takes photos of what they’re eating for dinner, there’s always something new to be learned. Those of you that know me will understand that I’m in no way trained to teach photography. In fact, I’m perpetually learning and honing my craft. As Socrates said, “I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think.”

Now, as always, it’s your turn! Use the past five challenges to go out and “Create Better Pictures.” If you happened to miss a day, go back and do it! You’re not missing anything by going back and practicing. Remember to be safe, have fun, and don’t do anything we wouldn’t do! Post your results in the comments below. Thanks for participating in this challenge! If there was anything you thought missing from these past five posts, let us know in the comments.