I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas holiday, and your new year is starting out well.
I'm not much into New Years Resolutions - in fact I don't think I can remember any that I've made in previous years... But it's the new year - 2012, and there's a list of things I want to implement this year, and a list of things I want to do better. I'm calling it "setting goals". I plan to blog about it to keep myself accountable.
The main thing I want to do is to improve my marketing. This is one area that I'm really lacking in the know-how and persistence. I've bought several photography and art marketing books over the years, and not one of them has the "secret way to market your stuff" in it. You know - that secret that all the old pros know, and won't tell us newer pros? Lately I've come to realize the secret is that "there is no secret - it's just hard work". In fact, a lot of the ways you market photography are the same ways you would market anything else. Advertise, flyers, phone books, etc, etc. Of course, an art photographer probably wouldn't take out a Yellow page add, but the rest of the ideas behind traditional marketing is worth looking into. So in that vein... Here's my plan for 2012.
Advertise: I'm going to seek out locations where the buyers of art are, and advertise there. My ideas so far include blogs, and magazines. Of course, the work here is identifying which blogs and magazines are a good fit for my work, and then of course, designing an ad. Frequency: This goal is for an immediate start, and I'll re-consider how often based on success rate.
Postcards: I have a list and I already have the post cards sitting in my office. So this is a matter of addressing and sending. I'm starting with local decorators. I want to be on their mind when they are decorating a house. I have a few more ideas for who I'd like to get on my list. Frequency: I would like to send out postcards at least 4 times a year.
Magazine Submissions: I always say I'm going to do this... and then I don't. I'm one for one - I've submitted to one magazine and I've been printed in one magazine. You would think that a 100% success rate would be good motivation. Or maybe I'm just worried about ruining my success rate! I know that rejection is par for the course, so I am not going to let that fear keep me from doing more submissions. Frequency: My goal is to submit a package at least once a month.
Galleries: This ones a little harder to quantify... Should I seek out a new gallery each week? Month? More often, less often? Since artwork can be difficult to sell to people who haven't seen it in person - I know I need to get my work into the public. Frequency: To be decided
Of course no photographer's list would be complete without photography related goals.
Get out and shoot more - This ones self explanatory. I don't think I can ever say I've been photographing too much!
Care less about what other people think - I think that sometimes worrying about how people might perceive your work can inhibit your creativity. While I don't think we can stop caring what people think, and in some ways it can be important motivation, I do not want the fear of what people might think to keep me from creating the art I want to create.
Experiment more with alternate processes/photography methods - Last year I started experimenting with older photography processes, specifically cyanotypes. I'd like to do more cyanotypes, and start dabbling in some of the other processes, such as Van Dykes, etc. I also might spend some time with my Holga.
Shoot more photography projects - My style tends to be very unstructured. I like to go to a location and let the location inspire the photography. I don't necessarily like to start with pre-conceived ideas or a list of photos to shoot, but sometimes I think it's good to work on projects and portfolios instead. It can be a great way to increase creativity.
So there's my list. What do you all have planned for the new year?