"Every accomplishment starts with a decision to try"
Do you make New Year's resolutions? I usually have one around being a size 10 again that I never manage to keep! However what I also do is make some business resolutions.
At the beginning of the year I pledged the following business resolutions:
So in February I spent a day of one to one training in Grimsby with the lovely 'Jodie Leigh Photography' focussing on newborn photography. Whilst watching Jodie work with two newborns, I learned about safety and posing, as well as the technical elements of this field. I am so pleased that I have been able to put what I have learned into practise with all the beautiful newborn babies I have photographed since.
Then in May I attended the annual 'Newborn Photography Show' in Birmingham and participated in Gary Hill's Children's Fine Art Photography Workshops. It was inspirational to watch Gary create timeless, classical portraits and I couldn't wait to get home and persuade my little cousins to help me practise by being my models. As well as face to face training, I've watched lots of online tutorials around photography and editing, so I think I can say I am well on the way to achieving my first resolution - more training? Tick!
As far as the second resolution: to work harder to promote my existence - no doubt the fact that you're reading this means you've at the very least heard of me! I've also worked on improving my website, Facebook, Instagram, joined BANPAS (Baby and Newborn Photography Association) and I'm still working hard to get higher on Google's rankings! So resolution two - work in progress, but so far, so good - tick!
Now my final resolution was a little bit like the pipe dream of being a size 10 again - nice idea, but unlikely. To dare to submit some of my work to the Guild of Photographer's 'Image of the Month' competitions is a 'big ask' as thousands of professional photographers do so every month and the standard is very high. I thought they would laugh me out of the room! However as the quote at the top of the page states: "Every accomplishment starts with a decision to try".
So in February I entered two of my best photos and was delighted to be awarded 'graded' which according to the Guild means 'The judges felt the image was of a high standard but not award winning at national competition level.' Eager to improve, I paid for some individual feedback for an hour on the phone from one of the judges and made copious notes.
So after my Fine Art training with Gary, I was determined to put all the training and mentoring into practise when I photographed Jessica and Daniel. I edited and re-edited, checked my notes for weeks until I was happy that I had produced the best images I could. In August I was ready to submit again. Then comes the long wait...until 21st of the next month.
Yesterday finally the day arrived and I rushed home from work to eagerly log on to the Guild site to see if my efforts had paid off. It reminded me of the day I collected my exam results from school! If you were in the Dunscroft area, you may have heard a loud squeal when I realised I had been awarded the Bronze bar for my photographs: 'Congratulations in achieving your Bronze Bar, which is only awarded to images of a strong standard in this national competition (something to be proud of)!'
So there you go - resolution number three, not only dare to submit, but actually achieve an award at a national standard!
Without doubt: "Every accomplishment starts with a decision to try"
What next? The road to silver ofcourse!