Every now and then I find myself uninspired. I pick my camera up, look through the viewfinder… and I just don’t feel right. I press the shutter button but it does nothing but producing a bland, boring snap you don’t feel even remotely excited about (I’m sure many of my photographer friends can relate to that).

Sunday was one of those days. Uninspired.

My husband and I arrived to Bruges the night before, it was pouring down with rain (we got soaked in the first 5 minutes), I was tired and thinking about the gigabytes of images that awaited me back home… And I just knew if I took any pictures in Bruges it will only add to my workload… and they would probably end up untouched for months.

There was no point in trying to take any “proper” pictures from inside of the tour bus either (but at least it offered some cover from the rain), so I decided to give my iPhone a go – just for the fun of it. I’d downloaded the Hipstamatic app for the iPhone a while ago, but never quite got around to giving it a proper test. So here was my perfect opportunity – sitting in a tourist bus, photographing through the window.

After I saw some of the results I got really excited, and continued photographing with Hipstamatic for the rest of the day, even when it stopped raining. My husband was wondering why I didn’t want to take “proper” pictures, so I started thinking about why exactly was I doing what I was doing (yep, I do analyse my own behaviour sometimes, however weird that might sound). I think that using an iPhone in this way actually allowed me to get my creative juices flowing again, and think about the concept and the composition of a photograph more than shutter speeds and apertures. Also, people don’t take you seriously when you’re taking pictures with your phone – which sometimes results in very lively shots! :)

I’m certainly coming back to Bruges for some “proper” images (the ones you can print big and put on the wall, you know), but here are a few of my favourite images shot on the iPhone using the Hipstamatic app:

Bruges from above, shot with Hipstamatic

Bruges's central square through a window with raindrops

Red post box in Bruges, Belgium

Chocolate shop in Bruges, shot with Hipstamatic

Wild flowers growing above the town river, Bruges, HipstamaticChildren wearing sunflower masks, Bruges, , HipstamaticChildren running on a street of Bruges, Hipstamatic

As for the random acts of kindness… Us being us we arrived to Bruges on a Saturday evening without having a hotel reservation. We figured there’d be something available. Not so! Every hotel was packed and we would’ve had a long night ahead of us if it wasn’t for a kind person called Rik from Hotel Adornes who spent 30 minutes on the phone to all hotels he could think of, trying to find us a room, and not expecting anything in return. We were totally floored by his kindness to us – something we never expected or experienced back here in the UK (or Russia, for that matter!) I can only imagine the attention his actual paying guests get!

P.S. I’d love to photograph a wedding or a romantic session in Bruges one day by the way! Anyone willing to fly or drive a photographer there? Pick me! :)

P.P.S. No, I’m not ditching my Canon 5D Mark II and starting to shoot Hipstamatic. Although I might try to get a few fun shots in on one of my upcoming jobs :)