Wednesday, January 26, 2011

photography goals 2011

self portrait (in the bathroom mirror)
In 2011 - Fewer awkward self portraits in the bathroom mirror...

I love photography, but I feel like I've been in a bit of a rut lately. The challenge of the Daily Photo project I started in 2006 has worn off, and looking over the past year, it seems I only photograph my dogs and my meals. I need some new challenges.

1. Complete The 12 Project.
One photo each month of the two of us - an idea made popular by Tara Whitney. This should be easier for us since we are a family of two, but it would be nice to include the dogs, too.

2. Use my zoom lens to photograph people.
I've never been a portrait photographer - to be honest it makes me uncomfortable to get all up in people's mugs to take their picture. But I'm always disappointed when I don't have photos of the people who are important to me. I especially want to get some good photos of my family this year.

3. Get in front of the camera more.
There's something missing in all my photos - me! I look at the photos of the past year and I seem absent from my own life. Of course, this is a goal I don't have much control over - but I'll have to encourage Larry to get behind the camera more.

4. Take creative self portraits.
When Larry won't cooperate with #3, it's up to me. I've got to find better ways of doing this than the ol' gorilla arms shot.

5. Read my camera manual.
I'm ashamed to admit that I've had the DSLR for over three years and still haven't read the manual.

6. Shoot in aperture priority mode.
I shoot food, inanimate objects, and shop photos in full Manual mode, and I shoot people and action in Auto. There is something in between - Av.

7. Use the tripod more.
This should help with #1 and #4.

8. Take an HDR photo.

9. Take a double exposure photo.

10. Enter more photo contests.
I did really well with this in 2010 - I entered 9 contests. I was a Finalist in the Manassas Art Guild Art of Snow Contest, an Honorable Mention in the April Pampered Puppy Contest, First Place in the April Penn Camera Photo Contest, 7th Place in the May Pampered Puppy Contest, and Honorable Mention in the CEA/Photojojo Best Shot Photo Contest. You can't win if you don't enter.

11. Get a 50 mm lens.
Been lusting over this lens for a while. I've never used a fixed lens before, but it's supposed to be the best lens to use for photographing people, especially in low-light situations.

12. Experiment with Lensbaby.
I've had this cool lens for a few years and I need to master it.

13. Get better lighting.
This is more of a home improvement project, but the lighting in our house (and consequently the photos taken in our house) sucks.

14. Shoot for a stop motion video.

And a few things on my To Do List for after the photos are taken:

- Purge bad photos.
- Archive good photos.
- Print photos.
- Make photo books.
- Share photos.

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