I know many people very keen to learn and extend their photography but won’t get out and challenge themselves, somehow they want to become better photographers but don’t get out and use the gear.
I ran a workshop recently on painting with light, not the easiest place to learn, working your camera in the dark, many struggled, they were aware of the situation we would be shooting in, but had not taken the time to think about it or check out settings on the camera before hand. The painting with light session was set up for them, all they had to do was follow some simple instructions to achieve some very different and amazing results, but that was too hard for many. I am not sure what the answer is, it seems they want to improve there photography but think it will be so easy, its not as most of us are aware, it takes time, one of the best ways is to challenge yourself, get out and shoot, make the mistakes and learn.
To challenge myself one of my hobbies is astro photography, if you thought portraiture was easy, then astro photography is at another whole level. Its frustrating but also rewarding you get that one good result, nothing too impressive, but at least we have detail and its sharp. No auto exposure, no auto focus, a bit like the old 35mm manual days when you had to actually think about what you were doing.
An early attempt above, and a recent shot from a few weeks ago.