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12-27-2013, 08:42 AM   #1
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2014 - Goals and Resolutions

I'm not sure whether this is the best sub-forum for this thread. I'm interested in hearing about other people's goals and resolutions regarding their photography in 2014. My resolutions are still evolving, but here are my initial thoughts on a few:

1. Get enlightened. Specifically, I want to get comfortable using off-camera flash and/or strobes (with modifiers) and start using them regularly in my pet photography projects.

That could pretty much be my sole goal for the year, I think. I got a head start on this goal by taking a short (2x 3-hour) workshop on studio lighting) in December and I'm following up with an intensive (20-hour) workshop in January at the International Center for Photography in NYC. I'm someone who learns skills like this best by taking a hands-on course first, with homework for practice. And before the workshop, I'm getting to spend the next week or so practising with my new flash and working through some online tutorials of the basics. If I get comfortable and become more consistent about using these tools in the first part of the year, then I'm going to treat myself to Pet Photography workshop organized by Santa Fe workshops later in the year.

2. Get sharper.

This is a three-part goal. The first part involves learning more about how to use my K-3. I'm not satisfied with a number of the images I'm getting out of the K-3 and I know it's technique, not the camera, that is at issue. So I need to work on understanding better the controls that will improve the sharpness of my images. Part two is about handling the camera to reduce camera shake. I'm relatively new to photography (using an ILC for less than a year and before the K-3 I had a small NEX, so I'm finding that I need to work on stabilizing my grip on the heavier and larger camera. The third part is about using a tripod more frequently, when appropriate. I hate carrying weight around, but I know there are moments when I really need a tripod. So I need to put on my big girl pants, take that tripod with me, set it up and use it. (To motivate myself for this goal, I bought the new Sirui T-025x as a post-Christmas present.)

3. Get organized.

This is a two-part goal. The first part has to do with regularly tidying up my Lightroom files (e.g., using smart categories, etc). The second has to do with organizing my increasing pile of camera gear and setting up my office space to function better as a mini studio (which means keeping the gym clothes, shoes and mail out of it).

4. Learn layers.

This is a more discrete goal than the others, but challenging nonetheless. I want to learn how to use layers in Photoshop properly, especially because I think it will come in handy with the photography I do for the animal shelter where I volunteer. (I frequently have to photograph the dogs and cats in less than appealing environments, and I'd like to learn how to use layers to place the dogs and cats in cleaner backgrounds, when appropriate.)

So those are my ideas to start. I know that I need to make these goals more specific, measurable, etc. but I'll try to refine them over the next few weeks.

Happy New Year everyone!

12-27-2013, 09:24 AM   #2
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Wow, those are some goals and resolutions! This reminds me to have some...I am taking a class in portraiture this spring semester and as that is the weakest part of my photography skills, learning it will be one of my goals this coming year. Shooting more film is another. The last half of this year, I got lazy and only shot one roll. Beyond those things, shoot more and have more fun should do it.
12-27-2013, 09:30 AM   #3
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Finish school so I can have time for photography...

Would like to work more with off-camera flash and continuous lighting and learn Lightroom.
12-31-2013, 11:34 AM   #4
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Those are similar to my photography related goals:
Start shooting raw instead of JPEG
Start using Lightroom instead of Picasa
Learn to use my new flash and generally lighting
Use my tripod more often
Shoot more abstract and nature subjects

Cooking related goals:
Learn to cook a few indian dishes I like - Dal, vindaloo, tandoori chicken, and generally experiment with curry.
Work on some carribean recipes, especially recipes with sofrito base
Duck Confit
Clam based dishes

Computing related goals:
Add a RAID array to my computer (necessitated by shooting raw lol)
Develop a multi-platform app (WP8/Android/iOS)

Personal:
Teach my oldest daughter to swim
Take a beach vacation
Get blackout drunk (haven't done this in almost 10 years)
Add solar PV panels to my house
Add more color to my garden
Plant a vegetable garden

12-31-2013, 01:45 PM   #5
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12-31-2013, 10:17 PM   #6
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My list of goals are:

... Learn how to use a flash properly vs. flood an area with too much light.

... Learn how to use curves in post processing (Apple Aperture).

... Shoot more wisely. Sometimes I feel like I take too many shots and I just get confused when I sift through them. Maybe even shoot less but make each shot count.

... Find ways to enhance the entire photographic experience and not just the shot.
01-01-2014, 09:23 AM   #7
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I have another resolution regarding gear...but as for photography techniques - to get my darkroom up and running and print and mount at least 1 black and white print.
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