How Photography Helps Mental Health - B&C Camera

Dealing with mental health and talking about it has become less taboo and widely accepted. Because of this, people seek more resources and hobbies to help relieve stress, anxiety, and depression. Surprising or not, one of those outlets just so happens to be our beloved photography!


Our daily lives are filled with staring at screens, so some may wonder how trading one screen for that on your mirrorless camera or DSLR camera is any different.


However, anything creative works wonder for mental health and is a great way to express your feelings. Art has a way of soothing people, and photography is a form of art! It is said that photography reduces the stress hormone called cortisol! See, there is even science to back it up!


Take charge of your mental health and adopt a creative outlet like photography. 


Take a look at everything from a different perspective.

Photography has always been the best vehicle to help hold onto memories or translate ideas. It is the way we honestly experience many things. Like many greats have said, photographs are like visual poems. They tell a story and evoke emotion just from a single shot. It can also help you see the world from a different perspective. For example, many news articles or blogs can garner more attention if an image is associated with the story. People thrive on visuals.


You can use photography to help you tell your story. Not only can you tell your story, but you can also get out and meet new people or explore the world. You can take this time to appreciate nature and wildlife and enjoy the beautiful side of the world. 


I look at breathtaking landscapes or floral photography and almost instantly feel a sense of soothing relief. Landscapes can show you how amazing the earth can be. Flowers are intricate, and each flower has so many unique characteristics it can be mesmerizing. For others, taking photographs of people can give them a sense of relief or a way to show their emotions. I have often seen portraits that made me feel what that person was feeling at the time.


What do you think would be your outlet in photography? Nature, wildlife, people?


Find your zone, and get in it!

Everyone has their own zone and flow that makes them more productive. And, sometimes, when you find something that keeps you enthralled, it is healthy for your mind. When you find something like this, it is easy to get lost in your hobby, and you feel accomplished and energized. Any creative hobby can have the power to do this.


Photography is all about getting in your zone. The whole operation takes time, focus, and concentration. You will need to focus on selecting your subject, the different angles you want to shoot in, and what lighting condition you need to work with. That process alone can seem meditative to some, and this is one of many ways to help you reclaim your mental health and feel accomplished.


Another great option is getting into film photography. Film photography is even more systematic - and requires more concentration. Trying new film stocks, different techniques to develop your film, and having the happy surprise of seeing your end results always makes me feel accomplished and well deserved.


Have fun and let loose, don't take it too seriously!

You don't need to take photography too seriously and let it be something that creates anxiety. This should be an outlet for you - not a task that makes you rack your brain. You can turn this into a playful activity and have fun with your subject.


Try finding subjects that evoke happiness. Something that instantly screams happy to me is kids that are playing. Think of a child playing at a park. Seeing their joy through the most simple things can help bring out your inner child and make you feel happy.


Remember, there is no right or wrong way to self-expression. You should always be having fun and enjoying what you are doing.


However, sometimes you may be taking photographs of things that are more somber. And in that case, you just need to remember that you don't want to get lost in the melancholy emotion. If you can separate the tragedy, then this could also be another great way to show your feelings and be a way to vent about something troubling you.


Gather your energy and immerse yourself in this creative outlet. If photography is a new hobby for you, check out these other articles about the basics of photography:


Related article: How to Photograph Artwork - 4 Steps

Related article: Photography Composition Techniques

Related article: Everything Looks Better in Black & White – Tips for Better B&W Photography

Related article: Create Moody Portraits with LED Lights


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