Photography demands exploration and experimentation, and inspires creativity. It allows us to document historical and important moments in time, capture our own personal journey through life, or simply create art. It’s also known to be therapeutic and have a positive impact on mental wellbeing. Photography allows the opportunity to focus the mind and encourages the innate awareness of surroundings, promoting mindfulness and reducing stress. Perhaps the most significant benefit of photography is that it forces the photographer to view the world from a different perspective. It can reveal beauty simply by macro focusing on detail otherwise inaccessible to the eye; it can showcase juxtaposition; and it allows us to witness social and cultural differences.
Photography is a fun, creative skill – it teaches boys to connect with others, be present in the moment, and to see the world from different perspectives. We know that it can sometimes be challenging to convince boys to be the subject of a photograph – for boys who don’t like to be in front of the camera, getting behind the camera can be a positive way of involving him in family photography. This is a great option for parents of children who are particularly shy or introverted. It is also a great way for boys to exercise their creativity, especially for those who are naturally observant. We’ve put together a list on how to encourage your son to develop a love of photography.
1. Encourage your son to have a go
The first step in helping your son to develop an appreciation of photography is to get him in the habit of practising it. Just over a decade ago, costs would have been incurred to develop photos; impacting creativity and the ability to explore different styles and methods, not to mention the wait for photos to be developed and the note keeping that had to be done to track what worked and what didn’t.
Nowadays, boys have access to smartphones and mobile technology which can be used to develop photography skills. The results are instant, and it is now a low cost option – unwanted photos can easily be deleted, and onboard filters can further extend creativity – some apps even provide details about settings used, for further learning. Encourage your son to take photos of things in his daily life, whether it’s his friends, household objects, pets, or nature.
2. Incorporate other personal interests to inspire passion and creativity
Another great way to encourage a love for photography is to relate it to your son’s other interests. If your son enjoys sports, encourage him to take photos of a local football match. If he has a keen interest in nature, go for a visit to a national park and encourage him to take photographs of different elements from different distances – whole landscapes, plants or animals, or close-up shots of bark or a flower. Have him look at different lighting, angles and perspectives. Incorporating his interests, will make it more enjoyable and rewarding.
3. Use editing software
Even if your son is not particularly interested in photography, he may well enjoy the editing process and the ability to get involved with digital technology. Whether on a computer or smartphone, there are many applications and software packages available to edit and enhance photos. From Photoshop and Lightroom, to Snapseed and VSCO Cam, boys can make edits, fix up mistakes and morph their photos into creative masterpieces, enhancing creativity and providing an avenue to explore and experiment. With so many possibilities, the post-production process offers a whole other side to photography for your son to enjoy.
4. Make it a contest
Boys naturally like to compete, so this can be a great way to motivate your son to get involved with photography. Create a photo competition or put together a photo scavenger hunt to see who can come up with the most creative, colourful and/or unique photograph of any given subject. You could even encourage him to enter local photography competitions – your local newspaper may be a good starting point.
5. Print and display photographs
One of the best ways to encourage your son in any interest, is to celebrate that interest. A great idea to showcase photography is to print photos and start a photo journal. If your son takes an especially great photograph, put it on the wall in a prominent area of your home. This demonstrates that you are proud of his achievements, boosting his enthusiasm and inspiring him to pick up his camera again and again.
As your son develops his photography skills, it can also be beneficial for him to visit art museums and photography exhibitions, or join a photography club. This can inspire creativity and offer inspiration.
Trinity Grammar School offers photography as a co-curricular subject and students’ photos of events are regularly used in social media posts, blogs and School newsletters. Our students have enjoyed some amazing achievements outside of school as well, with Year 12 student James Corben recently winning the National Bright Award for Photography 2018 (run by Billie Blue) for senior students. In addition, he won the National Human Rights Commission Junior Photo of the Year, for his photograph exploring homelessness. James was also a grand finalist in the Moran Photography Prize (Secondary School) in 2019 and 2018, and he runs his own photographic studio and does commercial work in his spare time. Year 11 student Lewis Dobbin was a grand finalist in the Moran Photography Prize (Secondary Schools) in 2019 and 2017. This is an outstanding distinction for these students, as this competition is widely viewed as the national championships of photography.
Trinity Grammar School’s Delmar Gallery also hosts photographic exhibitions from time to time, giving students the opportunity to be inspired by some amazing talent.
Trinity Grammar School encourages your son to realise his potential, pursue his passions and discover his purpose all within the context of a supportive Christian environment. We have guided boys to grow in mind, body and spirit for over a century and we know what boys need to truly flourish and succeed.
Trinity is a non-selective school that aims to provide the best environment for boys to flourish and succeed. To learn about the Trinity difference and to discover why we’re one of Australia’s top boys’ schools, subscribe to our newsletter.