I am often asked "Where do you get your inspiration from?". For this reason I thought I would share with you what inspires me and where I get my inspiration from.
When I began taking photographs in 2014, I often struggled to find a real sense of inspiration. I used to look at other photographer's work and when I found a piece of work that grabbed my attention I used to think of ideas inspired from what I directly saw. I still do find inspiration from other people's work, but it would just be an element, such as lighting, styling, or colour palettes.
Today, we are exposed to images just about anywhere and everywhere. For a moment, just think about how much time you spend on Instagram, and then there's Pinterest; where you can have up to 500 Pinterest boards and save thousands of pins. It seems exciting when you're all caught up in it, but often I find that this over-saturation can become overwhelming at times and even block my creative thinking.
It feels weird saying this, given that I'm a photographer and I'm all about photos, photos, photos... Though it's way better to draw inspiration from other things rather than just photographers and editorial spreads in magazines.
I'm not good at expressing myself through words and to me, photography is about capturing a particular mood and feeling. So reading other people's words and poems inspires me. My favourite poet at the moment is Rupi Kaur who writes about femininity, self love, relationships and revolution. Alongside her poems you will find her beautifully hand-drawn illustrations which anchor the writing.
Exhibitions & Archives
Seeing beyond what meets the eye and reading in between the lines.
Art must be experienced in person to truly get a sense of its magnitude.
I find it most interesting when I see an exhibition that relates to a concept I'm working on for a uni project. It's always a huge source of inspiration for me. It doesn't always need to be photography / fashion related though. I enjoy exhibitions about design, graphics, architecture, and more.
Trust me on this one: going to galleries clears your mind. For me, art is a form of meditation so when I'm looking at art I get ideas, see things from a new perspective, or even come up with solutions for issues in my life.
I find it's best to visit galleries with a creative friend or even alone if you really need that inspiration. (And no, you won't look like a loner, you just wouldn't have anybody to take photos of you observing the art for your IG story).
I enjoy location scouting when I have an idea for a fashion editorial I want to shoot. Not only does it inspire me, but it makes me think carefully about how the choice of location contributes to the context of images. There's nothing worse than turning up to the location on the shoot day for the first time and you have no idea where to shoot.
Though, the best thing is when I'm just walking around town with my earphones plugged in and feel inspired by movement, light, textures and colours.
This one's obvious - fashion inspires me greatly. I follow the latest trends and love seeing fashion shows. I research into the collections by both top, and up and coming designers.
But I don't always care about what's trendy - sometimes it's just not necessary, depending on the concept of the shoot.
In terms of my personal style, when I'm stuck for outfit ideas, I love seeing what some of my favourite fashion bloggers wear. I only follow a handful of bloggers, mostly UK based.
I think we're so lucky to find designer-inspired pieces from high street brands. So we don't really need to worry about not having the latest Balenciaga boots, right?
For anyone who knows me, by now you will have realised that Lana Del Rey is my favourite singer/songwriter out there. Ever since the Born to Die era, her lyrics have always appealed to me. Now, her new album Lust for Life is so chilled and features songs that engage with wider issues like politics. Relatable stuff.
I was over the moon when I saw her at the Brixton concert this July, shortly after the new album was released. It was a bit disappointing when her band couldn't play Love, but when Lana said “Fuck it, I’m going to do it a cappella", everyone began to join in and sing with her. This was one inspiring moment guys.
I am also inspired by other artists and Turkish pop/rock music. Both my parents are Turkish so I grew up listening to Turkish music. I find it manages to get my creative juices flowing as I can translate these thoughts and words into visuals.
My dreams inspire me. When I write about them, they can lead to ideas and the best part is they just come from me. Seeing different places, people and unusual scenarios is so fascinating. Sometimes I have psychic dreams that somewhat come true. Yeah, it's cool, but freaky at the same time.
So, "Where do you get your inspiration from?" - I'd love to know! Let me know in the comments below.