As a lover of lists, post-it notes and stickers, I take a certain amount of pleasure from seeing my wallplanner gradually fill up each year. By the end of December, the colour coded array of goals, bookings and meetings reaches it peak. I feel good. Satisfied. Then almost without warning, the wallplanner reaches the end of its journey and must be replaced.

With the blank canvas of the year ahead yawning out to me, I'll be the first to admit that I find January quite intimidating. Finding the inspiration and motivation to go out and shoot during the cold winter months can be a challenge. For some, it takes a bit of time to ease into a new year and a new frame of mind. If you're struggling to get stuck into the new year, here's five fantastic photography quotes to inspire you.

1. "The single most important component of a camera is the twelve inches behind it" 

- Ansel Adams

When you're not feeling particularly inspired, it can be all too easy to make excuses. Not having a "good enough" camera  is enough to stop some people from making progress with their photography. The truth is, that any camera is better than no camera and even if you are simply shooting with a mobile camera or a point and shoot, you can still be learning things about how to compose a great photo or the way the light falls in your frame. Basically, it doesn't matter what gear you're shooting with, as long as you keep shooting. 

What this quote also says is that your photos are really all about YOU, not your equipment. Put a group of photographers in front of the same scene with identical equipment and they will likely come up with a very different set of photos. Everyone sees and interprets the world differently, photography is an amazing way to reveal parts of your personality. In my opinion, it's what makes it one of the best hobbies out there. 

2. "Don't shoot what it looks like. Shoot what it feels like" - David Alan Harvey

Bringing your personality into your photography is so important, it's what makes your images unique and allows you to tell a story. It can be really useful to learn and follow certain rules when it comes to photography but don't be afraid to follow your gut from time to time.

3. "If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough" - Robert Capa

If you're not familiar with Robert Capa's work, now's the time to Google. His incredible ability to document war with his camera demonstrated an incredible amount of fearlessness and dedication. This may even be my favourite quote of all time and has become a bit of mantra when I'm shooting and not quite getting the shot. Getting right into the picture and casting off your shyness (or just masking it for a bit!) will lead to better photos. Try to always keep this one in mind.

4. "Which of my photographs is my favourtie? The one I'm going to take tomorrow" 

- Imogen Cunningham

 How refreshing to know that you're always moving forward. As we grow and change, so too will your photography. Don't let yourself feel bogged down with mistakes you might have made the last time your took your camera out, look forward to how you're going to shoot it differently next time. Keeping this in mind can help you keep momentum and not look back with too much of a critical eye. 

5. "Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst" - Henri Cartier-Bresson

"10,000!?!?" I hear you cry. Don't let the number put you off. As long as you keep going, you're improving all the time. I actually found this quote quite helpful when I was starting out as it felt like I got the green light to take dodgy photos. I experimented without expectation, it was actually very liberating and I think I learnt a lot very quickly as a result. I felt confident that I was making lots of mistakes but that was ok, that was the point. My mistakes were helping me learn. Apart from that, I counted myself lucky, when HCB said these wise words, he was shooting and developing film!

Hopefully these quotes can inspire you to continue your photography journey throughout the year and beyond. You can pin each poster to your own Pinterest boards if you want to collect them for your own inspiration scrap book. 

If you have any inspiring photography quotes of your own to share, pop them in the comments below. I look forward to hearing from you!


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