#365days2018 – what’s your creative project this year?

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Snow Woman – Jan 5, 2018 #365days2018

Apparently, yesterday was the most depressing day of the year (at least for those of us in the Northern hemisphere).  Now that that’s done, we can move on and get on with 2018. In a photographer’s world, January is a bit of a funny month. The search for a wedding photographer begins in earnest for 2018 weddings, and event managers start thinking about booking for their upcoming events.  A lot of people also may be hitting that 10 year expiration on their headshots and might be thinking it’s time for a new one. (If that’s you btw, you’re in luck – click here to send an email to get early bird notifications for when the Feb 2018 flash sale super-discounted $45/head headshots is taking place. This sale only happens once a year so don’t miss out!).

It’s also a time when a lot of freelancers are chasing down unpaid invoices from last year, and looking at ways to revitalize their marketing efforts for the coming year to start filling that funnel.

One thing I like to do as a photographer is start at least one creative project in January. While I’m still putting the finishing touches on my book for freelancers (Gigonomics) coming out early this year, I’ve also begun a fun experiment with my Fuji Instax Neo Classic which produces instant prints. I’ve committed to taking one a day for 2018. It’s quite a change from shooting digital as the prints cost over $1/each and so there is a subtle constraint to really think about the photo I’m taking. I’m also trying to take a photo that captures the main event or feeling of that day. It’s kind of like what Instagram used to be before it got colonized by Influencers living off sponsored posts and marketers showcasing all the amazing experiences you’ll have when you buy in.  At least that’s my take on it.

It’s also a bit of a re-learning journey for me using a fairly basic camera after growing used to all the whiz bang tools and high end kit I’ve got. It forces me to go back to the basics in photography and to rely on my own creativity.  And it’s a lot of fun.

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I know a lot of people take on some kind of challenge or new year’s resolutions. Some are really really dumb (like the Tide Pod eating challenge I read about today) and some are healthy (quitting drinking, eating more kale) and some are just for fun.  I think building in some kind of creative daily act is a worthwhile one to try. It’s a great way for older brains to stay fit and once you start stirring up your creative juices, who knows what will come out if it.

The beginning of a year is a good time to think about making changes, and tackling those creative projects you’ve been thinking of doing for a long time. Start writing that book (a sentence a day is better than a blank page); get the gym body you’ve always wanted (start now and by July you’ll be ripped), or just finally launch your freelance career. You only need to take a first step before changes get set in motion.

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This year I plan to reach more customers by extending the services I’ve got to offer. I’ve built up a team of vetted, talented freelancers over the past few years (videographers, writers, web designers and digital marketers) and am excited about the bigger projects we can tackle together. (Stay tuned for a new website!) From major conferences, gala parties, international events, corporate portraits or unique weddings, we’ve been able to take on bigger and more ambitious projects in 2017 and 2018 will be even bigger.

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So if you’re back at your desk after your jaunt in the sun (or your hibernation from the extreme cold) and looking at your events calendar for the year, take five minutes and let your mind ponder some creative projects to keep you engaged and happy. Need some ideas? Let’s talk.