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The Power of Creative Restraints in Photography

Have you ever packed the perfect kit for a trip only to feel weighed down by too many lens options? Or maybe you’re wandering around with a trusty zoom lens and end up missing shots while deciding which focal length to go for? This video succinctly explains why creative restraints – not flexibility – are often the key to achieving creative focus.

In one of his shorter videos, Pat Kay takes less than six minutes to explain how creative restraints can fuel your output as a photographer. After breaking down the basics of creative limitations, such as using primes instead of zooms, he goes on to explain that deliberately placing creative restraints on your photographic approach can boost focus and accelerate your progress. So, more than simply picking up a fast 50mm prime to limit focal length choice, he’s talking about having clear goals and setting limitations that will push you in the right direction.

As someone who almost exclusively shoots with prime lenses, I spent a lot of time doing the former. Almost as soon as I bought my first camera, I shot with every prime I could get my hands on before I even understood the characteristics of focal lengths. As a result, it actually took me longer to reach the point where I had clear goals and could place informed creative restraints on my photography – not only in terms of gear, but also my approach.

Are you the kind of photographer who likes to work with creative restraints or is flexibility a better asset for you?
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Depends almost entirely on one's experience, which is not measured in years, but breadth of experience.

Why is the title talking about restraint while the video is about constraint. Not the same thing. It is not about 'not doing things = "restraint" but more about limiting the available options = "constraint"

I know what he means. I am shooting exclusively with 235 deg fisheye lens from now on. Easy to get bad photos but it takes real skill to get good ones!