Beauty in the banal

Often when we face photography burned out, we will be giving reasons such as “There’s nothing exciting to shoot about from my daily life”. The very same can be said to those vloggers who crunch out videos from their daily life on regular basis. One must be thinking that the vloggers need to have fantastic daily life of soaring the sky or diving into the deepest abyss in order to have interesting content.

I beg to differ. A lot of times, what’s interest me of a photograph is not about the location or the content, but more so on the moments or emotions it carries, and also the technical aspects of it such as composition, colours and etc. Same goes to video, it’s more on the story rather than the location that will attract my attention. And a lot of times these photos and videos were created in a very mundane setting, or “banal” as stated in my title.

I learned about this phrase during a photography sharing session a few years back. The photographer mentioned that it’s certainly much easier for one to go to epic location and take a picture and get a lot of buzz out of it. But you can’t be heading out to epic location constantly (unless you are really rich or being paid to do so I guess), so if you want to create good works constantly, you will need the ability to “see” the beauty in the banal.

To see what others don’t, from the daily ordinary things.

This is actually quite true when you think about street photography. It’s all about looking for that “ah-ha” moment within the routines. As with what some vloggers did, they try to look for and create a story out from their daily routines. Is this moments and stories that will captivate viewers, as they joint the dots and connect the photographer/vloggers to their viewers.

I’m certainly not a good moment seeker and storyteller for now. To me, what’s important now is to slowly learn to “see”, to plan, to think and to act accordingly. Hopefully all of us will be able to see beauty in every mundane in our life, and the world will be a better place to live in by then. Till then.

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