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Part 2 Musing....What I learned from my Photos in 2017

January 08, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

When I was reviewing the photos from 2017, I also looked back in time.  Not way back, just a few years.  I found a lot of similarities.  Here are some of my observations around that:


  • I tended to show landscapes, nature, and patterns that I find in nature.  Most are "real" depictions with a minimal of editing.  Although in 2017 I spent more time doing minor edits in LR than in the past.  I tended to crop, adjust lighting, and improve clarity more this year than in previous years.
    • As a corollary to that, I tended to use Photoshop and associated Plug-Ins a lot less this year.  I just relied on the simple editing capability of LR to get my photos to what I saw.
  • I stuck to my rule of at least one photo per day.  In 2017, however, I had many days where I went on walks and included most of the walk in my "daily" column.
  • I tended to shy away from taking pictures of people or at least posting photos with recognizable people in my Pad galleries.  This continues my emphasis on photos that I can take and alter and post without worries of irritating others.
  • I rarely take photos of myself.  In 2017, I tried a bit more, but that urge quickly faded.  Although on my birthday, I set up my tripod and took but didn't post images of me.
  • I used my P&S Canon and my Canon 5DM3 for most of my shots.  This year I also bought a new Canon, 5DM4 which I tend to "save" for macro work and using my other lenses.  My lens of choice on my 5DM3 continues to be a 28 to 300 lens.  Can be soft, but it's so darn convenient to walk around and take photos.
  • I prefer taking photos while taking a walk.  And just find things that catch my eye.
  • I rely on the monthly themes and challenges that I am involved in to provide a "focus" for my image making.  I hope to continue that trend in 2018.
  • Selecting photos for me continues to be a difficult task.  What I select on one day might be different a month later.  This is especially true when I have lots of photos to review.


And now, what is different in 2017.  

  • I took a lot of images while on vacation.  And sometimes I would find myself a little burnt out in the days and weeks following and take what I would consider images that are more snapshot quality.
  • There was a period of time during the summer where I really focused on composition.  I found that pausing and thinking about how I would take the photo really improved the output.  I even spent some time exploring totally manual composition and exposure using my 180 macro lens and my tripod.  I would only take a few photos and that was actually a bit freeing since I didn't have hundreds of photos to review.
  • I spent little time on editing images.  Most of the time I did simple edits in LR and that was it.  
  • Spending time reflecting on my photos and contemplate their meaning was really important to me, even more so than last year.  Encountering the "Third Third" as a theme for the Mindcamp conference and putting together a program for that conference called the "Third Third" was extremely inspirational to me and my participants.  It forms the basis for future coursework and for future writings.  This was a big discovery for me.
  • Related to the "Third Third" is the discovery that my photos really represent a visual memoir of my years.  Subconsciously, I probably "knew" that before, but this year really caused me to pay attention to the memoir aspect of my photo-a-day experience.  I know have a truly intentional looking of each day from 2012 onward.
  • I share my galleries less and less with others.  I don't know why that is.  And I shy away from competitions.  It seems like my photography is becoming more and more personal and the photos are for me rather than to be gazed upon and "liked" by others.
  • I rarely used my phone for taking photos.  I discovered that I rely on aperture priority too much to change my ways to iPhone culture.  My P&S gives me the capability to shot aperture priority and is the size of a iPhone.  Actually a little smaller than the current crop of phones.

I decided not to include any photos in this musing.  And now I am ready to start afresh for 2018.  Let's see what I explore and discover this year!



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