Lightbox: A Pocket Full of Inspiration for Photography Enthusiasts
Just like any creative art, photography can become stale after a time. You get in a rut, satisfied with the aspects you’ve mastered, and a bit reluctant to move out of your comfort zone. Perhaps you love capturing scenic views, ducks on ponds and weeping willows grazing the water. Or maybe you fill a memory card with action-packed shots of every play in your kid’s high school football game each week.
LightBox Photography Cards aim to shake you out of your photo routine and add some snazz to your shots. Designed by award-winning professional photographer Paul Michael Kane, the cards are prompts to inspire you to take your work in new directions, learning some fresh skills along the way.
How do the cards work? Well, they give you an assignment, such as “Photograph machinery,” and you can use the highlighted icons on the card to see if you’ll need certain pieces of equipment, such as a tripod, flash, or filters.
At the bottom of the card you’ll see a photo that Kane took himself, and he shares settings and other techniques that helped him get his shot. You can follow your own path for the assignment, or practice the techniques he uses.
“One of the wonderful gifts my success as a photographer has granted me is the ability to inspire creativity in others,” said Kane. “I love teaching the craft of creating eye-catching images.”
Bonus cards in the box include cheat sheets on photography topics such as composition, aperture settings and colors.
The original LightBox cards were so well received that Kane launched a Macro Edition, with 52 brand-new assignments designed to boost your skills and comfort level in macro or close-up photography.
He chose challenges involving items that are close at hand for most people, to make the task a bit easier (now you’ve no excuses!). However, he admits that close-ups are difficult for him, personally.
“This was a particularly fun project for me, as I tend to shoot super-wide, so coming up with the challenges was also pushing my creative boundaries!” said Kane.
Want more? Relax. Now the Mobile Edition has been crowdfunded and sent into production. Kane tailored this new deck to the photographer, who uses a mobile phone or other device to catch images on the go. He’s an all-inclusive photographer, and stresses that what and how you shoot is more important than your type of camera.
Now that cell phones come with top-notch cameras on board, it’s easy to be ready when photo ops present themselves. And with a LightBox deck of inspiration prompts on hand, you’ll be looking for any excuse to practice new tricks and master the skills professional photographers have perfected.
“As always, this is about vision, never about gear!” he said. In fact, that’s his message across the board, and he encourages photography newbies with a point-and-shoot camera to feel as much part of his community as the gearhead with all the bells and whistles.
He’s also donated decks to high schools and speaks to students about photography. That education outreach, he says, is one of the most rewarding experiences of his career.