How to Have a Good Idea

Alice laughed. “There’s no use trying,” she said. “One can’t believe impossible things.
“I daresay you haven’t had much practice,” said the Queen. “When I was your age, I always did it for half-an-hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
-Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

It was maybe two years after I had graduated seminary that I went back for the Alumni Reunion, and all the guys I used to hang out with were there. One of them is, literally, among the funniest people I know. After the greetings and pleasantries were over, he said: “So, Landon: What kind of hipster hobbies are you into now? Refinishing old furniture? Sourdough bread? Black and White photography?”

With a certain look on my face, I walked over to my laptop, opened it, and turned it around so he could see all the artsy-fartsy black and white photos I had taken recently.

I’m still shooting photos (If you’re so inclined, you can follow me on Insta: @landonshoots), and I relish the thoughts and ideas of a lot of photographers I’ve found on YouTube.

A lot of these folks make videos beyond the normal “How to take a good photo” genre. These are artists who think deeply about their craft, and Jamie Windsor is one who has codified some helpful thoughts around coming up with good ideas that applies well beyond photography.

If you want to have good ideas on a consistent basis, I commend this 14 minute video to you. It matches with my own experience. The TL;DR version is:

  1. Constantly fill your mental bucket with good info
  2. Regularly get into a mental state where your mind can wander
  3. WRITE THINGS DOWN
  4. Act on your hunches

That’s it.

2 thoughts on “How to Have a Good Idea”

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