One of the many great things about photography is that it gets you out of the house and gives you a reason to go about exploring and traveling to new places. Sure, you could just do that, if you wanted — no photography needed. But, photography gives you a purpose for doing it. It prods you into doing it. Unfortunately, the weather doesn’t always co-operate. Is it cold out? Raining? Or, perhaps you’re fighting off some kind of a bug and perhaps not feeling quite well enough to venture too far outdoors? There are times when a photographer wants to photograph but, for whatever reason, the idea of going outside isn’t a desirable one. One of the other great things about photography, of course, is that you don’t have to go outside in order to do it.
However, when circumstances are such that you’d much rather stay in, a problem can arise — what to photograph? It seems that one can quickly and easily run out of ideas for doing indoor photography. What is needed in such a case are some fresh and new creative indoor photography ideas you can try. Trust me: If you’re at a spot where it feels like you’ve photographed absolutely everything in your home; you haven’t — not even close. You’ve just run out inspiration and ideas. But, a myriad of photographic opportunities are still all around you. It`s not that they`re not there. It`s that you’re just not seeing them.
The first place any photographer should look for new and interesting creative photography ideas is in the kitchen. Your own kitchen, more than likely, holds a wealth of creative photography opportunities that you’ve yet to exploit. All that’s needed in order to discover and exploit these is a little creative thinking. Do you have any cooking oil of any kind in your kitchen right now? Vegetable oil, canola oil, olive oil, or anything else? Chances are pretty good that you do. Do you also have a pot or a bowl? How about some tap-water? Most people have easy access to each of those things.
Fill a bowl with water, pour a little oil into it, and give it a stir. Wait for it to settle and, as the oil and water don’t mix, you’ll see very interesting and beautiful patterns made of round, bubble-like clumps of oil forming at random and floating on the water’s surface. These can make for some very interesting and beautiful close-up shots. If you have off-camera flash capabilities, you can try experimenting with lighting the water’s surface from different angles to produce interesting effects. Do it in a clear bowl and experiment shooting off your flash through the transparent sides of the bowl, lighting the water`s surface from slightly below. If you have colored gels for your flash, all the better.
Do you also have food coloring at home? After you’ve stirred your oil and water pot, and it has settled, drizzle or drip food coloring over the surface as well to add color and more detail to the image. Or, before mixing the oil and water together, set out three or four glasses. Add a small amount of the oil to each glass. Add a different color of food coloring to the oil in each glass, then drip the colored oil from each glass, one by one, onto the surface of the water.
If you’ve got different colors of old house paint lying around you can try the same sort of abstract photography as another of the creative indoor photography ideas. Get an old bowl, or pan, or pot of some sort that you don’t mind no longer using for any sort of food preparation. Pour a color of paint in it to cover the bottom of the container. Slowly pour a small amount of another color, then another — keep adding as many colors as you have available, or that you like. Take a stick of some sort and slowly stir the paint around — not so fast, or so long, so that the colors start to blend together to form different colors, but so that you get interesting streaks and patterns of different color paint. This, also, can produce some really spectacular, close-up abstract photographs.
It might sound like something of a cliché, but when it comes to creative indoor photography ideas the only limit truly is your imagination. Try this: Go to the most cluttered room in your home — perhaps in a storage room in a basement, or some such thing. Spend a few minutes just looking around at all of the things located in the room. Try to pick out three things in that room which, on their own, have the most interesting and unusual look about them. The closer you can get to something that, if someone were to see it on its own, they’d say “What in the heck IS that thing?!?!?”, the better. Take those three things and arrange them in a still-life. Once arranged, look at your arrangement and ask yourself what else you can add to improve the visual interest of the image. Experiment with different arrangements and different items. Hit the Internet, search for, and view, still-life paintings of the old masters. Try to emulate the arrangements, looks and styles you see in those paintings. If you find a still-life painting of a bunch of fruit, for instance, that strikes you as interesting, try to emulate that painting as closely as you can, but using your bizarre objects in place of the fruit.
Still need more creative indoor photography ideas? Try your hand at some easy indoor trick-photography techniques that produce visually stunning results and will amaze and astound your viewers. Or, try your hand at doing some product photography — just about everyone commonly has at least a fairly wide selection of product items lying around their house at any given time.
If you own a macro lens, spend a little time walking around your home while concentrating on just noticing interesting patterns, or textures for another of the useful creative indoor photography ideas. Try to take notice of every little thing as seen from close-up — instead of a from a few feet away as you normally see them as you pass by. The patterns on the upholstery of an old chair, for example, or counter-top. The ugly wallpaper in the guest bedroom, perhaps (What were the previous owners thinking! I MUST get around to re-wallpapering that room one of these days!) Try to notice interesting, or unusual patterns, lines, shapes. When you see something, touch your nose to it and focus in very close, looking at a tiny section of it. Is it unusual and interesting? Photograph it! Make a small section of that pattern into an abstract macro-photograph.
Like I said before, it may sound like something of a cliché, but clichés usually become clichés for good reason. And, when it comes to creative indoor photography ideas the only limit really and truly is your own imagination. Make an effort to try and think outside the box. Take photos of anything you wouldn’t normally photograph — try to make the photos interesting. Experiment. Play with arrangements. Play with lighting. Try new things. Pay no attention to whether or not you think they might or might not work. Just do them. Every so often you’ll hit what Bob Ross used to call a “happy accident” — you’ll capture a photo that is truly unique, interesting, beautiful and that, very often, will spark a whole new onslaught of creativity.