I’ve been thinking that I really want to improve my photography in general, but a wishy washy goal as that isn’t going to be successful unless I make it more specific. Here’s a list (so far) of what I want to improve upon/do in terms of photography:
1)Shoot only in b&w after all my colour film is done
I finally found a decent place to get colour film developed, and it’s not far away, BUT I use the fact that it’s not walking distance to a) not develop film b) not shoot film because I’ll need to go two times to get film developed. Now that I finally figured out why my chemicals didn’t last long (long story short, faucet in kitchen sink was leaking badly, and only discovered it months later now that area underneath sink is grossly mouldy and smelly, hence creating a wonderful environment for photo chemicals to deteriorate!), I can ease my way back into developing my own film. No more excuses about trips to get film developed and laziness getting in the way! It’s also a personal challenge to see if I can make interesting scenes even though there are bright pops of colour here and there (though in my experience, Shenzhen is slightly lacking in colour unlike other Asian countries). Most of my favourite photographs in the last two years or so have been black and white, so I’m keeping with that.
2) Read more photography blogs/books
We must draw inspiration from somewhere! I also like looking at what others are doing and their perspectives on the same places I’ve photographed. Met some great local photographers this way. Would love to meet more face to face if possible.
3) Shoot with my film camera at least twice a month
I’ve been so caught up with life in general that my photography last year really took a back seat (I used to go out at least twice a week to go shooting). I want to do it more because it’s one of my favourite outlets when I’m stressed/uber busy. Plus, photography allows me to learn more about this place and meet locals. Maybe I’ll try to organize meetups or rope my friends into at least walking around with me and exploring, even if they are not photographers themselves.
4) Ask people to take portraits of them
I have friends who aren’t afraid to get into people’s faces to take a photograph, or shoot while they are looking, whether or not they have permission. I’ve tried and many times miss shots because I get either too embarrassed or nervous. I want to try different ways to photographing people, and the only way I can take images of (at least adults) faces/more profile shots is by asking people. Hopefully my Chinese skills are good enough, and I don’t get a million questions about where I am from etc etc. This can extend to friends and family as well, though hubby hates me taking photos of him now (did he humour me back when we were dating?)
5) Explore the world of toy cameras again
Weather here has been sunny lately, so I can bust out my holga/lomo and take more shots. I still love toy cameras because of the surprise you get once you develop and (in my case) scan a roll. Since this goal sadly failed in 2011, I want to make sure I do this goal for 2012. I have half a roll in about two cameras, not even sure what I took images of from those rolls anymore!
6) Do at least one/two more photography shows
I’ve been bad at changing my photos at The Kitchen Futian as I told the manager I would (I hate not keeping my word!). Will try to do that sometime this month and once more before the end of June arrives. Will also discuss with friend to see if collaborative show is still on.