A related problem I see is the sheer proliferation of uninspired, tepid and turgid work that is now easily accessible via the web. It does seem that almost everyone is shooting the same kinds of pictures. I'm in the market for a digital slr (to add to my analog equipment not as a substitute), and I am just blown away by the number of bad images people with super-expensive gear are able to make. A link promises pictures of newly acquired (expensive) gear; you click on the link and what are you confronted with? Pics of kids, birds, deer, buildings, etc. Framed in the most uninspired way.

Originality seems to me to be in part at least a function of one's willingness to see differently, for example, by changing one's body posture (get closer, get down on your knees, lie down, and so on).

Perhaps approaching photography "cerebrally" might also help. For example, rather than saying: "I'm going to shoot kids and birds," one could decide to capture different types of movements.