It’s important to stay refreshed. There are some exceptions, but most of us don’t create in a vacuum, and I’m a firm believer that you have to see good work to make good work. I’ve had days where everything I see is an inspiration, but I’ve also been burned out and idea-dry. Luckily, the internet means a flood of images is only a few clicks away.
It can be difficult to make time to be inspired, but it’s important.
Flak Photo is a website dedicated to publishing contemporary photography online. Run by Andy Adams, the site has an open submission policy and publishes one image daily, six days a week. Also, it’s free.
I found this site when I was in fourth-year university, and subscribed via email. This means that I get a new image delivered to my inbox every day (except Sunday). I don’t think every shot is a winner, but I think it’s important to keep seeing new things. Sure, there are books, and magazines, and blogs galore, but I don’t always make the time to inspire myself. By subscribing to a site like this, I am guaranteed to see at least one new photo a day.
I know that a number of photographers have personal ‘photo-a-day’ blogs, but I think the difference is that Flak Photo is curated by a third party. They have no personal attachment to the work, and have a variety of submissions to choose from, so you see a variety of image styles. Seeing one photographer’s daily image can be inspiring too, but the work may run stylistically or thematically similar from day to day. While Flak Photo tends to prefer certain types of images, the selected photos are very different from day to day.
The other great thing about a curated site is proper credit. Each image that lands in my inbox is credited with the title, series, date, and artist name. It’s super easy to go right to the source when I see a shot I love, or want to learn more about. I’ve found some fantastic artists this way, many of whom keep their own blogs that I now follow.
This isn’t a publicity push for Flak Photo, they just happen to be the site I found at a time when I was burned out on creating. I also love Vancouver-based Booooooom.com, run by Jeff Hamada. While Flak Photo is (obviously) photo-based work, Booooooom features all kinds of projects, including motion, illustration, painting, music, sculpture, (and some photography).
I’m sure there are a number of similar sites, though. Who do you follow?
screen capture from FlakPhoto.com