2013 is officially half over. Or rather, for you glass half-full-ers, we can all look forward to another 26 weeks that are left in this great year of Twenty Thirteen. This is a great time to evaluate how the past six months have gone for you and think about what you can do to make sure your photography is on track for the second half of the year.
Did you accomplish what you set out to do from January to June? Were you as productive as you hoped that you’d be? Did you develop some bad habits throughout the year that thwarted your productivity and creativity as a photographer?
Don’t worry, we all did. Nobody’s perfect, it happens to everyone. I can definitely think of a few things that had me sidetracked. In fact, if you have’t figured it out by now, I often write these kinds of introspections for myself as much as for anybody else.
With that in mind, now is the time to start getting back on track so that you can make July through December awesomely productive. Here are three simple things to keep in mind that might help you ramp up for the second half of the year.
Imagine. No matter if photography is your business or your hobby, come up with some specific visions for where you want your photography to go for the next six months. Make a list of the people, places, locations and subjects that intrigue you and a few techniques that you’d like to try out and apply to your imagery. Then don’t delay- start scheduling photo shoots, or at least getting out there with your camera, even if it’s just to sketch or practice. Don’t let days and weeks go by without getting something lined up, because they will if you don’t get after it. Believe me.
2. Instill New Habits
Take an honest look at your photography and try to identify all the bad habits that you developed during the first half of the year? Right. You know what they are. What’s robbing your productivity? What are the areas where you slack off and let slide? For some, it’s marketing, for others, (me) it’s falling behind in your unsorted new images folder. Maybe it could even be relying on the same old techniques and failing to step out and try new things. Perhaps you let fear or lack of confidence in a certain area that prevents you from being the best photographer you can be.
Start the second half of 2013 off right. Fix those things. Get on top of problems and bad habits NOW and get in the habits that you know you want. Clean out that unsorted folder. (I’m working on it!!) Make some cold calls today. Send out a promo. Go shoot photos. Take a break from Twitter and actually get something done.
3. Spend Time Learning
Whether you do this every day, every other day or every week, carve time out towards active learning with your photography. Make the time to sit down and read all those eBooks that you’ve been collecting on your hard drive or iPad. Visit someone else’s website whose work you admire and spend the time looking through their imagery, studying their compositional and lighting techniques. I promise it will do you good.
Buy a book. Attend a workshop. Sign up for an online photography course. Get together with some other photographers and talk shop. Another great way to learn and get inspired. Just hanging out with one other motivated shooter can really light a fire under your ass. Try to make regular educational investment in your photography during the second half of the year. Then think of where you’ll be when 2014 hits.