Got It
This website uses cookies. More details


Learn Photography

Photo Tips >

Indoor & Backyard Photography Ideas

1 – Photograph Out a Window


Henri Cartier-Bresson:

It doesn't take many brains. Doesn't take any brains, takes sensitivity, a finger and two legs.

Sensitivity was easy for him.

To gain more sensitivity, photograph out a window, every hour, for a day.

Or, photograph something on a window sill, or in your backyard, repeatedly, for a week.

I was given this assignment years ago.

My classmates and I were ho-hum about it.

The following week, when we saw each others photographs, we learned a lot about light.

Scroll Down to Section 5

Ruth Orkin

Ruth Orkin, most famous for a photograph of a young woman in Rome, photographed out her window on Fifth Ave. in New York City.


A World Through My Window by Ruth Orkin

Claude Monet

Claude Monet did the exercise with paintings of the Rouen Cathedral.


2 – Slow Shutter Speeds


Keep Your Camera Steady

If you don't have a tripod, set your camera on something.

Think of things that can move indoors or in your backyard, such as people, balloons, irrigation sprinklers, paper boats with candles floating in a pool, and so forth.

Shutter Speeds: Long

Assignment #3 - Shutter Speed

Move Your Camera


An Intro to Intentional Camera Movement (ICM) Photography by Jason Round

Painting with Light


Painting with Light

3 – Extremely Fast "Shutter Speeds"


The flash on your camera, when photographing close up, will blink on and off faster than the fastest shutter speed on your camera.

Photograph up close, with flash, water splashing, flour sifting, hose spraying at night, and ?

Painting With Sound

4 – Still Lifes


Photograph glassware, feathers, bubbles, leaves, and ?

Still Lifes

5 – Flower Photography


Here's an online overview of flower photography.

Flower Photography

I use the booklet below in my Flower Photography classes.

It's designed for beginner photographers.

If you're more advanced, skip over the sections about aperture, shutter speed, and so forth.

Flower Photography Workout (Word doc)

Northern Photographers

Photograph spring and the change in seasons.

6 – Macro Photography


Typically, to do a close up, step back and zoom in on the subject.

Counterintuitively, you're far away in order to do a close up.

To get even closer, get a set of diopter close-up filers, about $30 to $50.

There are three filters.

You use them one at a time, or in combination, for different magnifications.

For higher quality optics, look for an achromatic close-up filter, about $125.

It consists of two lenses cemented together into a single filter.

If you get enamored with macro photography, get a macro lens.

7 – Make a Book


Go to CVS, Walgreens, mpix, Shutterfly, etc.

It's easy and inexpensive.

Just keep it simple at first.

Best Photo Books 2020 by Sally Wiener Grotta (January, 2020)

Best Photo Book Printers Compared by Jennifer Berube (March, 2020)

8 – Make a Big Print


You can go to your usual lab for a big print.

Also, have look at Engineer Prints - Parabo Press.

9 – Collage & Photomontage

Collages have photographs that are distinct from each other.


In photomontages, the photographs are more blended.


There are collage and photomontage apps for your phone.

I have written many handouts on using GIMP, Lightroom, and Photoshop Elements, for photomontages.

The handouts are written for beginners.

If you don't have Lightroom or Photoshop Elements, use GIMP.

It's free.

10 – PATH


I use this book in my Photography 3 – Roundtable classes.

The book is designed to inspire the photographer.

Pick it up, read a bit, get going with some new thoughts.



PATH (Word doc)

11 – Henri Cartier-Bresson?


Most photography students know Ansel Adams but few other famous photographers.

Over 300 Master Photographers

A World History of Photography: 5th Edition by Naomi Rosenblum

12 – Websites to Click On Periodically


Colossal - Photography

Earthbound Light - Photo Tips Archive by Bob Johnson

Fstoppers Thanks Jim R.

Lens - New York Times

The Online Photographer by Mike Johnston

PetaPixel Thanks Jim R.

Photo Booth - New Yorker

Reddit - r/Photography

Ugly Hedgehog® - Photography Forum

13 – More Photo Tips


Go to Photo Tips to look for more indoor and backyard photography ideas.

14 – Student Ideas & Photographs

Museums Ask People To Recreate Famous Paintings With Anything They Can Find At Home, Get 35 Hilarious Pics

• Do a documentary on an activity, such as washing the car.

Inspired by Kathy Cone's car wash photographbelow.


Foggy Morning by Kathy Mckown


Benderson Park on a Foggy Morning

(Extreme Social Distancing) by Martin Collins


Pileated Woodpecker by Jim Bencivenga


Meadowlark by Jim Bencivenga


Hairy Woodpecker by Jim Bencivenga


Stewart Fishbein


Jeff Mohl


Influenced By The Sun 1 Mark Williamson


Influenced By The Sun 2 by Mark Williamson


Influenced By The Sun 3 by Mark Williamson


Kathy Cone


Kathy Cone


Joy Horne Jones


Joy Horne Jones


Sandhill Crane Baby by Kimberly White


Sandhill Crane Baby by Kimberly White