I'm often jealous of photographers who visit exiting new places or witness spectacular events, because they can afford to travel to far exotic locations or happen to live in a big metropolitan city (like New York or Tokyo). I live in a small Dutch town, which has nothing spectacular about it. Sure it has quite a lot of green, such as the nearby woods, parks, gardens and waterways. But that's more or less it. I can't afford to travel a lot. Even if I could afford it, I wouldn't have the time. Most of my photography takes place walking the dogs, or riding on my bike to work, seeing mostly the same environment time and time and time again. So, having photography as hobby forced me to look at my environment in new and different ways, so I wouldn't make the same old boring photos over and over again. I got closer to the subject, made photos on different times of the day, used a variety of lenses and played with the light. To give an example. The picture below shows that even a boring, sad looking, stretch of grass at the side of the road (top picture), can result in quite a nice picture when shot at the right time of day, up close and shooting into the light (bottom picture). Until now I haven't ran out of ideas and the "unspectacular" surroundings I live in made me a better photographer.
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