Influences: Flickr Finds

Call it writer’s block, call it what you will, but sometimes I find myself feeling uninspired and lacking motivation to pick up the camera.

One way I’ve found of remedying this is checking out some photographic images that inspire me, and one place that has an abundance of creative, quality photographs is the photo sharing website Flickr.

Now, there’s no denying that with Flickr’s increasing popularity, there has been a proliferation of…well…rubbish images on the website. I don’t mean to be harsh, and I’m fully supportive of green hands to try things out and post their results online, but I don’t really think it’s useful to post 72 photos of your wife’s feet. Some people may be into that, but it does make it hard to filter through all the clutter to find the really cool stuff.

Today I’ve decided to showcase a few images that inspired me from some great photographers. Each artist has a unique style and direction, and I feel glad to have stumbled on their photostreams in the “Flickrverse”.

Firstly, a fellow Aussie who does really creative stuff with light painting.

keep the frequency clear

Mark Silva first caught my eye with the above photo of one of the works featured in Sculpture By The Sea – an annual art installation festival held in Sydney. The image uses a technique called light painting, which involves extremely long exposures while light trails are created with torches, mobile phones or any other light sources imaginable. Objects are also illuminated in a similar fashion. There are many photographers that utilise this technique, but what makes Silva’s work special is the creative ways in which he puts his images together. I consider him a master of the craft. You can check out more of his amazing photos here.

Fang Tong is another great find from Flickr…

The station
Please click on the image to view the original (larger). I cannot post a larger version, as although she’s given permission to use her image in this post, sharing has also been disabled on Tong’s Flickr account, so I can only post this small version with a direct link.

Fang Tong is a really versatile and highly skilled photographer, so defining her style is a little more difficult. The above image is the one that drew my attention to her photostream, and my favourite photos of hers share some common qualities. The images I like the most all feature sole individuals, and while the settings are all unique and different, a feeling of stillness and bittersweet isolation permeates them all. Here’s a few more (click for larger version)…

The ride

Endless love


Early morning  [Explored]

The clicking on the images will bring you to the photos in her Flickr photostream and you can navigate to others from there, and you can also visit Fang Tong’s website here

Going in a completely different direction is one Oliver Fox, whose most striking images fall under the heading of travel photography.


The above photo titled “Feed” is undoubtedly a striking image. I love how all the elements come together perfectly, and I think Fox would most likely admit some degree of luck in the way this image played out (he seems to be a pretty humble guy). The thing I like about his photostream is that you can see his progress as a developing photographer. This is another great thing about Flickr, as a photographer’s photostream is a chronological record of their development and evolving style (honestly I feel a little embarrased about the quality of images in my own photostream from just a few years ago, but I hope that I feel the same way about today’s images in a few years, as it means I’ll have made great progress in my craft).

Anyway, back to Fox. Another of his images makes me feel warm and fuzzy – they’re so cuuuute!

Smiley faces

Fox has a website here

Finally, I’d like to share one of Daniel Johansson’s works.

(Sharing has also been disabled on Johansson’s photostream, and for some reason even the small image is not showing correctly, so please click on the link to view).

Johansson does some great portraiture, but the above image really caught my eye. Sometimes a simple idea can lead to a captivating image. There is a brooding moodiness in this image that I absolutely love.

The above four photographers are just a few of the many great artisans displaying their work on Flickr. Now I’m not getting paid to promote Flickr, so I will openly admit it takes some searching to find the good stuff on the site, and don’t even get me started on the “interestingness” settings. The main thing I want to get across, though, is that when you’re down on inspiration, Flickr can be a great resource to remotivate you to pick the camera up again and do your thing.

Thank you to Mark, Fang, Oliver and Daniel for allowing me to share your images here, and thank you for sharing them with us all on Flickr and on your websites.