My last blog entry extolled the wonders of going naked, camera-ly speaking, and now here I am describing the sheer creative fun to be had by tooling around with the in-camera creative programs; be they the modes that lead us by the hand (in night photography for example) or especially, the little extras the Nikon people throw in on their entry level DSLR cameras like my newly purchased Nikon D 3200. I was fully prepared to curl my lip until, in the process of familiarizing myself with all the new bells and whistles, I found all these little after-capture things one can do with images to entertain oneself and one's friends.
I have become aware that many amateur photographers are using in-camera menu operations to add a little zip to their shared imagery. Fun, playful fun: and perhaps that is more interesting in the end and has more creative potential than the earnest but dull family photos and documentation of trips that have been the common product of the camera since the photo world began.
I think we do need to lighten up and spread our wings because creativity is multifaceted: Full time serious study and application is less effective than a full portion of free play added to the mix. On the other hand, play-play-play, that does not lead to new ways of thinking and working with materials simply remains unfulfilled potential.
So, let us study our camera's functions carefully and get to know that information so well that our camera becomes an extension of our mind. Let us study other image makers - they are our work mates -, let us push our limits both technically and imaginatively and in the process by all means engage in creative play.