Making photographs, not just taking them – Dundee, Tayside, Scotland

2013 – What’s The Plan

New Year

For anyone that’s been following my blog for a while you may remember I set myself some New Years resolutions last year, for anyone that didn’t see them here they are in full.

Firstly the none photography related, I would say that I:

  • Did complete a half marathon in a time I was reasonably happy with
  • Switched from Windows to Mac and loving it
  • Managed to sort a few things around the house including building raised beds in the garden
  • But failed miserably at getting out on my motorbike (2 days in a year is not good enough)

But moving onto photography related ones, I:

  • Did replace my 18-55mm kit lens with a Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 and boy what a difference (see this years resolutions)
  • Considerably improved my skills at post production editing (see below)
  • Managed to slightly improve my understanding of lighting but mainly the use of natural light
  • Sadly didn’t do so much to improve my understanding of controlled lighting, although I have plans for that
  • I have cut down on how many shots I take of the same thing.  Yes I still will take 2-3 of the same shot but adjusting the exposure slightly. I will still come away with a bunch of photos but not nearly as many as before so speeding up both the taking and sorting later.
  • Histograms is something I have kind of missed, I don’t use them whilst shooting and still rarely use them when editing.

An example of my post editing skills:

This is the image directly out of the camera

This is the image directly out of the camera

Arbroath beach

Same image again but after editing

Additionally towards the end of this year I have overhauled this site (with the main focus now being the portfolio side of things rather than the blog, which has more of a side roll) and starting making my work available either direct from here (using the contact page) or over on <insert link> (the selection of images available is slowly growing).

What’s in store for the year to come?

Well after seeing the improvement from investing in my Sigma 17-50mm lens I now realise that I need to invest in more good quality glass to compliment what I already have.  This means I would like to now replace my Canon 50-250mm with something like the Canon 70-200mm or Sigma 50-150mm.  Previously I thought the Canon 50-250 was a decent lens, well compared to the 18-55mm, but now that my eyes have been opened I can’t find myself using this lens anymore.

I would also love to upgrade my camera body, I’ve started hitting the limits of the 450D and would especially like the capabilities of the newer bodies to shoot at high ISO’s, but investing in glass remains my priority for now.

In terms of lighting, seeing as I never quite got around to that this year I’m planning on investing on some equipment and time to get into controlling lighting and delving into the world of portrait photography.  Hopefully as I try out a few things I should learn and develop, don’t worry I will blog along the way so you won’t miss out.

In addition, I want to continue to improve my compositions and my photography eye (the ability to see how a scene will work as an image).  The thinking then is that I won’t have to take a shot to see how it looks on the back of the camera or to then change angle and reshoot.  Hopefully this will then mean I take even fewer shots when out so again saving time whilst out and back at home when sorting/editing.

So this is my plans for 2013, as well as trying to fit in 2-3 half marathons and baby number 2 hopefully arriving safely in June, let see how I get on.


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