My father surprised me with this camera when I fell in love with photography during my last semester in college. It was the first gift he ever bought for me himself and sadly, because he died not long afterwards, the last. I’ll never forget the look in his eyes as he handed it to me, and the feeling of the camera’s cool metal body in my hands. Choose something you treasure. Don’t judge if your choice would be impressive to someone else or not. It might be a signed baseball you’ve had since you were 10, your dog, a special piece of jewelry or art. Whatever it is, celebrate that thing with pictures. Try to do this assignment when you’re alone. Work quietly and think about why you treasure this object. Stay fully focused and thankful.
Be thoughtful about the background.
Show your treasure in a flattering way. Experiment with light sources if they are available. If it’s movable, take it over to a window and take a shot close to the window, move it farther, and farther and farther away, making a few shots each time. Each of those photographs will be different. You can light nearly anything not large with a strong flashlight, a shaded lamp, a bare lightbulb, even a few candles. Work thoughtfully and slowly. Try to compose each shot with care.
Say thank you, maybe not every time you press the shutter, but keep that feeling of gratitude as you work. Don’t let your mind wander. As with any creative endeavor, the more focused you are, the better your pictures will be, the more you will learn, not only about photography but about yourself.