January 1, 2020

5 Photography New Year Resolution ideas

As we move from one year to the next we try to get better by making a New Year resolution. Here are 5 photography related ones for 2020

Usually, at this time of the year, we look back on the last 360-odd days and then think about how the next 12 months can be better. I’ve created a few photography related New Year resolution ideas that you could make and see some improvement in your photography.

Shoot Every Day

We look at people at the top of their game, Roger Federer in tennis, Lewis Hamilton in motor racing and Laura Kenny in cycling. When they became the best in the world, did they sit back and think “that’s it, I’m number one”? No, they continued to practice. They pushed themselves further to stay number one. Now not everyone is going to get the chance to be number one but it will certainly help you to get better.

The more I practice, the luckier I get

Arnold Palmer

There’s a great website called Blipfoto which encourages you to take a photograph a day. The interface is great to show at least one photograph day. Better still there is a warm and opening community who encourage you in your journey.

Set photography challenges

It’s really easy to get used to photographing the same things. If you’ve got a pretty garden then flowers are a willing and easy subject. If you live by the ocean, seascapes don’t take much effort. However, you’ll find your photography will get better by pushing yourself to do new and different things. A great New Year resolution would be to take part in photography challenges.

There are different variations on the same theme of either a technical or creative challenge being set and trying to find ways to meet that challenge. I have tried quite a few challenge groups when I was starting out in photography and they certainly helped me. Both from increasing my own creativity and seeing how others met the challenges.

Why not join the Edinburgh Photography Workshop Photo-Challenge group on Facebook? Each month, we set a different theme. At the end of the month, we vote on the top photo which then becomes the header image for the following month. No pressure, no nasty comments and lots of fun!

Use a Prime Lens for a day

If you use a camera with an interchangeable lens, it probably came with a kit-lens that has some kind of zoom. They are great as a walk-around lens. You can zoom in and out to get the composition you want.

If you want to get really good at composition then try shooting with a prime lens for a day. A prime is a lens that has only one focal distance so you need to compose your shots with your feet. Physically moving in and out to get a great composition, really helps you to think more about the subject you are photographing.

Even better, you can a prime lens quite cheaply. Both Canon and Nikon have a 50mm f/1.8 which you will be able to pick up for around £100. Not only will it help your composition but you’ll love the bokeh effect when shooting with a wide-open aperture!

Take a photography lesson

By reading this blog, you know that there are tons of resources online to help improve your photography (thanks for reading by the way!). If you find it easy to take on the information this way then it can be a great (and cheap) learning tool. Don’t discount taking a photography workshop though. The benefit of a face to face session is that you can ask questions, see how a professional works and have room to go down rabbit holes that will lead to learning experiences you’d never expect.

Find a photo buddy

It’s really easy for photography to become a lone past-time. Partners who don’t take photos can easily get bored whilst you are waiting for that little bit of light. It can be nice getting out to a location in the hills and enjoying the peace and solitude whilst indulging in your hobby. Why not find someone to come along and join you? You’ll be amazed how another pair of eyes might lead you to a composition you hadn’t thought of. Just chatting to a fellow photographer will give you tips that you can try out.

Give us your feedback

If you’ve got any questions or comments, leave them below. You can sign up for the Edinburgh Photography Workshop monthly newsletter where you’ll get regular updates on interesting things happening in photography and some great tips. Sign up by clicking here.

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