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Creating a Photo Collection...It's Not What You Think

by Eric Von Lehmden | October 17, 2013

Let me ask you a question. Do you find yourself drawn to something specific when you are traveling? No matter where you go...you see it and are drawn to it? This could be anything from as broad as architecture to something as specific as door knockers. Well, let me lay an idea on you. Why not create a photo collection of this specific "thing" that you are obsessed with whenever you travel? It is just like collecting stamps or baseball cards...your are just doing it with your camera. Whenever you see that certain "thing" take the best photo possible given the situation and soon you will have a growing collection of photos that you can create into an art piece, share on a website or just keep it a secret for your own enjoyment.

One of the main keys to creating this collection is staying consistent. Figuring out what the object of your attention will drive your whole collection. That is not to say that you can't have multiple collections going on at the same time. There is no rule against that.

Photo Collections Are Not Just For Professionals

Let me give you an example of my photo collections that I am always cultivating. Two of my photo collections are windows and doors. I don't know why, but it seems that when I travel the windows and doors I see are always more interesting than what I see every day. I find there is a lot of character and beauty in them. Plus, I find a lot of symbolism in both. I am also obsessed with getting photos while I am flying. Cloud formations and photos of the earth below always fascinate me.

photo collection, windows

photo collection, from the air

Now you can figure out what it is that you gravitate towards...take out your camera and start shooting. Here are some other examples of subject matter for photo collections that I have seen or heard of. I would also love to hear some of your ideas or what you love to collect.

key holes

cracking or weathered paint

American flag

knots in wood

street portraits

urban decay

fog photos

empty swimming pools


You put one photo of a window out there and it doesn't really mean all that much, but when you put 50 or 100 images of a window out there it becomes a collection. Here are a few more from my collection.

photo collection, windows

photo collection, clouds

photo collection, clouds

photo collection, windows


Photography, fine art printing and decorating news and advice

Tips-n-Tricks #472

Shooting with one set up (ie a fixed focal lens and camera body) will challenge your creativity and will get you extremely comfortable with your camera gear.

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