I've been actively pursuing manual photography and all that pertains to portrait work as since 2009. I started aggressively pursuing photography as a career towards the later part of 2010 and 2011 was my busiest year thus far. I tackled a lot of firsts: weddings, newborn sessions, flash photography and event photography. I was challenged endlessly and grew tremendously not only as a person but as an artist. It has been quite an adventure to say the least!
I am excited about this year ahead! I have some pretty clear goals that I have set for myself and I am eager to work towards them and hopefully at the end of this year I will have tackled more firsts and will be able to see even more improvement in my work as a photographer. So, to hold myself accountable I will share those goals with you all but, I'd also love to hear your goals for 2012 so please share! I'd love to know what things are you hoping to do or accomplish with the next uh, 11.5 months. Wow, we have already blown through half a month! Holy moly! And I know the rest of the year will fly by just as fast. Carpe Diem folks...carpe diem.
My photography goals:
*Learn something new pertaining to editing or photography every month (or more but, at least once a month...don't want to overload myself). This month I learned something very useful thanks to Ashley Sisk over at Ramblings and Photos and her post Tutorial Tuesday. Ashley and I have become good friends over the past year all thanks to blogger (seriously how cool is that!) and this particular post I learned how to brighten a background with a dropper and how to stretch a background. I am in love with that new technique and have already used it a few times for some of my creative photography sessions where I had a chair in the shot that wasn't supposed to be there.
*Do more creative sessions this year. I think that creative sessions are one of the best ways a photographer can grow. I am not getting paid so there is zero pressure and zero deadline. Those two factors alone are quite liberating! I can edit however I want which is great because it's fun to try new things. I can also ask the model or models to do things I might not feel as comfortable asking a client that I don't know very well. It will continue to teach me how to pose people and to give clear direction to clients. This is an area I still want to grow in. Getting people to pose naturally with the vision you see in your head is much easier said than done. I'm excited to get better at this!
*Begin to build a small indoor studio. I am using the term studio very loosely as it will by no means be a studio but, I want to invest in a backdrop stand, backdrops and a basic light kit so that I can offer kids and baby sessions indoors during our colder seasons here on the East coast. I am actually really intrigued by print work (like fashion modeling). I often find myself studying adds in clothing magazines. I love seeing what props or colors they use to make the set pop. The things a photographer can learn really are endless!
*Hone in on my editing style. My editing style has become more concise recently but, as in all areas of my life I feel that I have multiple personalities when it comes to style. When it comes to interior design, (which I also love!), I have always struggled to decorate with ease because I love too many different looks. I love Pottery Barn and whatever style you want to call that. I love shabby chic and Rachel Ashwell. I love rustic and I love vintage. The same is true for clothing, landscape design (another love of mine) and so on and so forth. With photography however; it is important that the client knows more or less what to expect when they receive their prints so it is essential that my editing style represent me and what speaks to me. So, how do I accomplish that when so many things speak to me...hmmmm..that is my goal for this year:-).
*Consistency. I shoot in manual almost always during my paid client sessions simply because I like to have more control over the lighting. Without going in to too much detail I will just say that I would like to learn how to trust my meter more. I have a love hate relationship with the meter on my new camera and I think the only way I am going to be able to see more consistency in my shooting is if I learn to let go and trust my meter more even if it does shoot darker than I'd like to. Surrendering to the meter....I will let you know how this goes:).
*Work on the design of my photography blog. It's blah and needs some umph....I will have to give this a lot of thought. At the moment I really have no idea what I want to do but, I know it needs some TLC. Presentation is so important as a photographer!
*Get in the picture more...and not just on days that I am in jammies and look like a hot mess (those are great too sometimes:). I really want to appreciate some of the pictures taken of me and I guess that will also take some effort on my part. It is SO easy to never be in the pictures when you are a photographer, when you are a mom and again...you are always the one taking all the pictures and when you just plain aren't comfortable in front of the camera...which, I am not. Fortunately, my hubby has a good eye and with minimal direction from me he can get a nice shot for me. Thanks hubby! Being the ever supportive guy that he is, he even took a pause during the middle of his game to snap a few pics for me today. I am grateful as he helped me tackle one of my goals for the month. I will share a couple of the others later...as this old lady needs to hit the sack.
Don't let discouragement weigh me down. I faced a lot of discouragement last year. I tuned it out for a long time but, for whatever reason towards the latter part of the year some things really got me down and they lingered far longer than they should have. I want to strive to be less distracted by all the crazy awesome talent around me and just focus on my own goals and my own work. One day at a time...
So, there you have it. These are my photography goals for 2012 and here is me getting in the picture!