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Photo Goals for 2012

I have set some very lofty photography goals for myself in past years. Stuff like photographing all of the registered historical sites in Maryland or the drudgery of a photo 365. Each year that process led to failure and frustration.  While each of those were good goals, and certainly achievable, I simply don’t have the time to realize them.

Early last fall a friend contacted me because he wanted to use several of the photos I have posted here for a vacation property he was decorating. Of course I was humbled, and the project was learning experience like none I have endured since picking up a camera. What stuck out to me most about the experience, though, was the photos he chose for the project. With the exception of one, the four photos he chose were part of an experiment exercise I tried one quiet summer afternoon. The experiment wasn’t  created by me, but was published by the Digital Photography School, you can read it HERE.

The basis of the article was to limit the number of photos taken during the session (resist roboshooting, and slow down), fix the focal length of the lens being used (focus on composing shot in the camera vs cropping in lightroom), and to keep ISO and aperture settings constnant. For those who were film camera photographers if this sounds like familiar to the regular constraints of  film camera photography  that was the precise point of the exercise.

2012 Photography Goal #1

Slow down and think and don’t take so many photos.  I accumulated 10,749 photos in 2011. The vast majority are a blurry over or under exposed waste of hard drive space. Not every shot will end up framed in a friends beach condo, but I’ll be a better photographer if I slow down and limit myself.  Ideally, I would like to cut this total in half, so 5,350 total shots, or 445 per month.

All of my photos are edited in Lightroom, Photomatix, or both. I have Gimp loaded on my PC, but get frustrated when I try to use it. Photoshop is the industry standard, but I have never used the software.  This puts me at a disatvantage with my photographer peers. 

2012 Photography Goal #2

Learn Photoshop.

My DLSR is old, it a Canon 350D. My lenses, for the most part, are never wide enough, or fast enough for the conditions I am shooting in at the time. The tripod I have can barely support the weight of my 70-300 lens. I don’t have a cable release. The list goes on and on.  Looking back at the experiment above there is far more to photography than having great equipment. It helps, of course, but never required. 

2012 Photography Goal #3

Be content, at least one more year, with the equipment I have. At this point I can’t take a better photo with a better camera, it would be the camera doing all the work. The exception to this rule may be ro purchase a fast(er) zoom lens in the 16-70mm focal range, or a fast 30mm or 50mm prime. Both of these would improve my photography.

Anyway here is my favorite photo from 2011, enjoy!


Easter Shots

First, sorry for the lack of posts lately.  I’d love to blame it on busy-ness but the real reason is I have been really lazy with the camera.  I took a bunch of photos on Easter.  Above are three I took at of some spectacular spring colors we are seeing in Central Maryland this year. I have migrated photos back to Picasa and Google web albums.  In my opinion it’s easier to quickly edit and post with these programs versus Flickr.  I think the main advantage is one click uploading with Picasa.  None the less hope you enjoy.  I promise more posts more often.  Stay tuned!!

Crocus Wins

Spring officially arrived yesterday afternoon and the evidence of spring showed itself in my front flower beds with the arrivial of our Crocus.  I spent a warm sunny afternoon Saturday working in the yard.  Every few summers I actually have time to spend out in the yard, and I am thinking this may be one of them.  I have 2 projects planned:

  • Add some landscaping to my side yard.  This will include some sort of Hardscape, probably a stone border or perhaps a short fence of some sort.  This project will also entail getting a dead tree removed
  • The second is to close in the area under the deck which we use to store junk

Photo 365 has taken a beating lately.  My weeks have been increasingly busy with the start of spring, as this is the busy season in the motorcoach business.  I’ve not had much time to blog during the week, and the nights I have had time I haven’t had the energy.  I’m not sure if I am going to continue for now with the photo365 project or just concentrate on getting the best of what I do have time to shoot.

Until then, enjoy the photos along the way.

Photo 365 Day 73 CSCUMC Steeple

CSCUMC Steeple, originally uploaded by Nelson Cross.

The Cape St. Claire UMC steeple on a bright sunny day. Obviously this was not shot in Annapolis this weekend. I shot this photo a year or so. I like this photo because it’s simple and to the point.

Photo 365 Day 72

FP6, originally uploaded by Nelson Cross.

From the BPC Photowalk a few weeks ago. Another slow photography weekend. Rainy here in Maryland today. I’m shooting some photos at church tomorrow when Mark Batterson from National Community Church visits, but I’m not sure if those will make the blog. We’ll see!

Until then, enjoy!

Photo 365 Day 69 Late Afternoon at the Park

IMG_6397, originally uploaded by Nelson Cross.

Photo 365 Day 68 For Victoria

IMG_6263, originally uploaded by Nelson Cross.

Victoria gave me a hard time about not getting any blogsposure lately, so here she is (with Jackson) during our trip to the park this weekend.  Even though the kids were looking into the sun, I like the colors in the photo.
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