If you can handle the heat, summer is fantastic for enjoying the wonders of our great Big Apple. With the city in flux, there’s no better time to venture out to catch a new glimpse of your neighborhood.
One of the best ways to do it? Pick up a camera and set yourself a photography challenge. Whether you’re an old-school camera user or a proponent of the #ShotOniPhone movement, getting behind the lens is a fun way to see a different side to an area of town you already know and love.
With that in mind, we’ve laid out a few prompts to get you started:
Prompt 1: Follow your haunts
You know your favorite haunts better than anyone. Pinpoint a few of the more uniquely ‘you’ hangouts and take your camera on a tour. Try to stay present for the duration of your walk. What types of people do you see around you? Are the trees manicured or left wild?
By playing photojournalist and trying to document the uniqueness of your route, there’s a high chance that you’ll open your eyes to a new view of places you’re used to visiting day in and day out. As an added bonus, you’ll end up with a series of photographs that could turn into wall prints or postcards for your loved ones that don’t live close by!
Prompt 2: Change of time
If you live in a high traffic area, a great way to get to know your city more deeply is to simply look out the window. Try setting up your camera and snapping a few pictures from the same location at different times of day — dawn, morning, noon, dusk, and twilight. This bird’s eye view is a great way to mediate on the speed of your neighborhood and the relationships between its residents and businesses.
If your camera of choice happens to have a long battery life, you could also give a time lapse video a try. They make a great keepsake for when you’re away and feeling homesick.
Prompt 3: Tune in
Music is a stimulant for creativity. To tackle this prompt, pick a song that reminds you of your neighborhood. The task here is to let the music lead you. Queue up your song of choice and push play as you leave your doorstep. For the entire length of the song, let your ears lead your feet and your eyes lead your camera. Try to use the cadence of the song you’ve chosen to inform the types of photos you take. Did you choose a fast beat? Consider the cars and people around you in your photographs. How can you use a slow shutter speed to showcase the movement of this hustle? Did you opt for a slow jam? Consider the architecture and more static beauty — like greenery and landscaping.
*There are far more than three ways to get your camera involved in finding a new neighborhood perspective, but these are a good start. If you give them a try, get in touch! We’re on Instagram @nooklyn.stories, on Twitter @nooklyn and on Facebook and we’d love to hear from you.