The idea was that it is often when you put yourself into a situation specifically for photography that you are forced to practice the theory that you know and you see your photography improve.
The assignments I mentioned were all different types of photography or places to take photos – weddings, road trips, sporting events, festivals, portrait sessions, concerts, trips to the zoo etc.
What I didn’t mention in the post was another set of ‘assignments’ or challenges that I’ve set myself over the years which have also led to a lot of photographic growth.
In these challenges I tend to set myself the challenge to only shoot in one particular way for a period of time (for me it is usually a weekend challenge as that is when i take most of my images).
These challenges all relate to your camera and limiting yourself in some way to either switch off some element of the automated aspects of your camera, limiting yourself to really hone a skill or to practice some kind of technique.
While this isn’t really a natural way to shoot – I find that focusing in on one particular aspect or skill in photography at a time can really help to see improvements in that period of time which means when you next need that skill you’re all ready to go!