5 photographic New Year resolutions
Try something new this year by setting yourself these photography goals
It’s easy to make New Year resolutions, but a little harder to see them through! Every year we come up with a list of things we’d like to do as photographers in the following 12 months, in the hope of broadening our horizons, become better known amongst our community and overall become a better photographer. Often we fall back into our comfort zones however, sticking rigidly to our regular photography schedules and approaches, meaning we make progress, but at a slower pace.
To liven things up a little, we don’t need to make grand plans; this is probably the cause of our lack of success on the resolutions front – we make too many unobtainable goals. It isn’t necessary to travel to the other side of the planet, or to buy the top-of-the-range pro dSLR, costing thousands, to take better images. Try to think smaller and work out how to better integrate photography into everyday life. In this guide we run through 5 quick ideas for things to try in 2018.
Try a new genre
The most obvious way of shaking up your photography is to try a new area, focussing on learning how to capture unfamiliar subjects. If you usually shoot portraits, try your hand at macro photography, learning how to use a different array of camera settings and photographic principles in the process. If you are a seasoned landscape shooter, have a go at sports imaging. Read around the subject, hire some kit and see what you can achieve. The biggest advantage of this is that you may be surprised to find you pick up new skills, which can be applied to your current regular work.
Perfect your skills
Besides extending into new photography genres, there are always areas of your most-shot subjects which can explored in more detail. A pro photographer knows that there are always additional skills to be learned, so investing time in practising specific techniques can help you build a more rounded skill set.
Meet more photographers
Draw inspiration from other photographers by interacting more with photographic communities, both online and offline. There is likely a camera club somewhere nearby, where you can socialise and exchange ideas and tips with others working in your field. Alternatively, most social platforms have methods of building and integrating with special communities like photographers. Join Groups on Facebook, 500px, Flickr and Google+ to find motivation from the comfort of your own home.
Use your kit more
You may have expected to see a tip on this list, advising you to invest in additional photo gear, to broaden your repertoire. However, a better approach is to find new ways of using your existing kit. Set a goal to ensure you are using all of your kitbag equally and to its full potential. Often there are items in our bags which we bought because we thought we would use them more than we ultimately did, so increase the efficiency of your photography operation by getting the most for your money. Make sure each camera, lens, light and accessory is effectively benefitting your photography.
Revisit old locations
Another common New Year resolution is to travel more and shoot more locations. However this is likely to require significant expense and may be a reason for you failing to achieve this by the end of the year. Instead the suggestion is to revisit well-shot locations, where you have already spent time making images. Finding missed opportunities in pre-shot places is more challenging than going somewhere completely new, but is very rewarding when you capture a shot you had not previously considered. Going in with a prepared mindset can help you make this possible.