As photographers, we can only pillage and plunder our local scenery for so long before it is time to move on. We have all been there; Same tree, same park, twenty different angles, spring, summer, winter, and fall. Ten bucks says you are nodding your head in agreement, and fifteen says you despise that tree, and avoid driving within a ten-mile radius if possible.
Add gas prices, unemployment, and soaring temperatures (depending where you live) to the mix, and the good old fashion “road trip” is barely an option.
What is a photographer to do you ask?
For that answer, we will need to tap deep into the “Photo Buddha” inside all of us for guidance. For me, it took a whole 15 seconds to gain complete enlightenment which led me to “hermit photography.”
Hermit photography, Really?
Yes, I know it’s a lame phrase, so try “Domestic Safari” instead.
It is amazing how many simple household “knickknacks” and “sundries” we pass daily that we never give a second thought, especially in a photographic sense. Mostly because they have been in the same spot for so many years that they are invisible, and I mean that in the most literal sense. However, when we stop and look around, suddenly our homes are filled with photographic opportunities, hence, the “Domestic Safari.”
I have no interest in your camera, settings, or lighting techniques. This is meant to be fun, and to inspire you to use the imagination and “see” things you may have missed.
For this article, I left the fancy gear behind, and used nothing more than my iPhone, my Joby GorillaMobile, and some post processing iPhone apps. This is not to say I will not grab the “gear” and come back for some better photos, but until then I like to think of it as surveying the land before building my dream home.
My first stop was the kitchen, which isn’t the most exciting part of the house, however, with some creativity and some post processing thrown in for good measure, I found a few keepers.
Next I visited my soon to be office. I have just started to organize, so it is a real mess, however, this made for some interesting shots. See mom, a messy room can be a good thing!
To maintain my energy, I found a shady closet and enjoyed some cold water and trail mix. After that it was time to continue my safari and head to the living room.
The living room tends to be the central hub of most homes and ground zero for antiques, family photos, and a load of knickknacks acquired over the years. It is also the room where you will find zombies, better known as family members, sitting around the television trying to decide which program to watch out of the three hundred choices presented to them. I had to get in and out as quickly as possible so I wouldn’t upset the tribe.
I ended the day with a trek upstairs to my studio. As a musician and voiceover artist, there were plenty of photo opportunities in this room.
By the end of the trip, I took over two hundred photographs. Were they ready to be hung in an art gallery? Probably not, but that was never my purpose.
I did find some shots that I will definitely revisit with my higher end equipment, however, they would have remained invisible had I not decided to venture out and experiment with Hermit Photography.
Head on over to my Flickr group to share some of your own “Hermit Photography.”
All photos were taken and processed on the Apple iPhone 4.
Bryan Zimmerman is a seasoned musician, writer, videographer, and photographer based in Center Valley, Pennsylvania. His style varies between landscape and architecture, however, he has a “thing” for cemetery photography. Bryan’s true style is black and white photography, and he loves to tell a story with each photograph. Bryan has won several awards for his work and is currently working on his first novel which will contain both his poetry and photography. You can view his work at http://zcs41.deviantart.com/gallery and http://www.flickr.com/photos/bryanjzimmerman