When I first started taking pictures and thinking seriously about photography I was extremely self conscious. Not just of my photo's, but how I looked when I was taking them. I always felt that if I stopped to take pictures people where going to stare at me, or wonder why I was taking pictures, or whatever.
At times I still feel this way, but in the last year or so I realized that this was perhaps one of the things stopping me from moving forward in the level of quality of my photos. So I have been working on letting go of some things. Here are a couple of tips that I believe have helped improve my photo's greatly.
1. Don't be afraid to stop and take pictures in odd places.
To get the angle I wanted on this picture I had to laying on my side and across most of the main path/road to the beach, right in everyone's way. I was lucky this time, it was early and I only a couple of people had to walk around me as I took pictures of what is considered weeds. I have also sat down in the middle of a sidewalk (again taking pictures of weeds) and you will often find me somewhere along a road side taking pictures of grass. And yes, I have got strange looks. The more I get, the less I care because I see results in my pictures.
2. Don't be afraid to get dirty.
This picture (SOOC by the way (yes I am bragging a bit....)) was taken in a muddy coastal marsh. I was in sandals, and I had to get down to my knees. My pants kind of got dirty. I was however prepared to get right down on my butt and walk out there looking like I had an accident if it would have helped the shot. I am sure all the couples out for an evening stroll would have loved that!
3. Don't be afraid to get into some goofy position.
Now, as I was taking the picture, my husband was laughing at me because of the position I was in. But being next to 9 months pregnant, I just can not get on my belly. I had to use my legs in some strange position just to balance myself to get a somewhat straight shot. Thank goodness for maternity pants. If I had been wearing normal pants I would have been showing off a bit more than I would have liked.
Since I take a lot of pictures of flowers I am always finding myself in odd positions in public. BUT, the best place to get great shots of flowers is as low as you can get usually.
Learning to get over that self consciousnesses while taking photo's can be a difficult task. But I swear if you push yourself to get past it, your pictures will improve.