Today I’m talking all about creating a photography series. What exactly is a series? Well the dictionary defines it as, “a group or a number of related or similar things, events, etc., arranged or occurring in temporal, spatial, or other order or succession; sequence.”
Well that was a mouthful! To break it down in relation to photography I like to think of a series as a documentation of a specific event, time, and or place that you repeatedly photograph over time.
As I have grown over the years as a photographer creating series have really become a beautiful way to document so many aspects of my work and life. They have become a treasure box that I am slowly filling with the passage of time.
WHY CREATE A SERIES?
When I first started out with photography I was just scrambling to learn learn learn. But after I became comfortable with a camera things shifted and I began looking at my art differently. What was I trying to do with my art? What was I trying to say?
It quickly became very clear to me that documenting my life’s journey and especially the love I have for my children was the most important goal. It is the memories I want to leave behind for them. And series are an amazing way to do this!
Creating a photography series is like creating a time stamp for your life. It is a way to hold a moment in time and at the same time watch that moment change with the passage of time. Take a look at this Christmas series of my daughter. Seeing the images side by side gives you such a clear picture of how she has grown over the years.
SEE YOUR OWN GROWTH
A series is also a great way to see the change and growth in yourself as a photographer. I can see the difference in my photography with each year. And another plus about creating a series is if you are ever in a rut or at a loss of ideas of what to shoot you can work on one of your series!! Creativity problems solved!! 🙌
Here are some of my favorite tips for creating a photography series of your own…
MAKE IT EASY
Sometimes when we start out creating a series we have grand ideas about what we are going to achieve. Maybe you are going to take a shot at the top of a mountain once a month for a year. I’m telling you right now that is going to be tough!!! One month there will be a snow storm, the next you will be so busy with life you just plain out forget! Once a year…now that’s a little more doable.
Don’t create unrealistic goals for yourself. My favorite monthly series is in my driveway because I know I can at least make it there every month! I save the epic shots for an annual goal. Set yourself up for an easy win!
FIND A WAY TO HOLD YOURSELF ACCOUNTABLE
Whether you like to share your photos on Instagram/Facebook or just with your family, try to find a way to hold yourself accountable to actually complete your project. Plan to make a calendar of all your monthly photos at the end of the year…if you miss a month your project won’t be complete!
THINK ABOUT THE TIMELINE FOR YOUR SERIES
Do you want it to be monthly, annually? Does it revolve around a season or holiday? I have several different series. I have a monthly project in my driveway that I mentioned. But I also have my tiny garden that I capture in the spring, summer, fall, and winter.
I also have my holiday series…Valentines, Fourth of July, Halloween, etc… Then I have certain places that I like to photograph repeatedly like my window series. Think about the things that are special to you and have a deeper meaning than you can incorporate in your series.
My series are some of my most special treasures, marking the beautiful moments in my life and the lives of my children. Time really is a thief so at least catch it in the act!
Fall is in the air so if you are looking for a little inspiration check out my post from last month all about my favorite tips to rock your Fall photography right here!
P.S. I’m participating in a super fun blog circle with some of my photography friends this month. Check out my friend Robyn who is a Premier High School Senior Photographer and her post all about college bound kids getting family photos!
Ruth Young is a professional, portrait photographer and photography educator located in Culpeper, Virginia. She photographs her daily life with her 5 small children and has a passion for teaching photography. For more about Ruth follow her on Instagram where she posts daily.
Robyn Scherer says
What a great idea! This is so helpful too!
Michele N Quattrin says
Such lovely images to go with some great advice!
Alison Bohnenkamp says
These are so beautiful Ruth! I love the series that you have created and the reasons for them are so true!
Rosa Clark says
Your images are so beautiful!!! This is very helpful. Thank you.