2013 was a very good year. Twelve months ago I launched Generator Photography with pretty much no business plan and and only a few vaguely defined goals. I ended the year with +1,100 followers on facebook, really great responses to my posts on flickr and 500px, and my website traffic is going from strength to strength.
From my mid-year post, The Six Month Progress Report: “My goals for the first year were simple: Keep up the (good) work. That’s it. I figured if I can find a good business name (which, by the way, took me several years and many tries), find and build a website, a facebook page, a 500px page and whatever other media outlets I can find, get business cards, and genuinely build my brand, that would be a good enough start. From there, my plan was to just see if I could keep it all rolling. My challenge to myself to was to keep shooting, as close to every day as possible. And not just quantity, but see if I could continually post quality content as well. Not only build my brand, but continue to grow as a photographer and, in a sense, as an artist.”
I believe I have accomplished that. Mostly.
Blogging went by the wayside. That is definitely something I’ll need to push through into the new year. However, most everything else went swimmingly.
I did three blurb books. They haven’t sold as well as I would have hoped but hot damn I’m impressed with them. If I can point to one aspect of Generator Photography that I totally poured my heart and soul into, it would be those books.
I also opened a shop on Etsy. As with the books, sales haven’t been anything to write home about, but also I haven’t put too much stock in there for people to see. I’ll talk more about this later.
It was an interesting year for gear. In the beginning of the year I bought a Pentax K-01 for $300.00. It’s been the single best gear decision of my life. There is no way the quality of my images would have been as good without this camera. Fact. I also bought a 35mm prime lens. That K-01/35mm prime combo rocked my world. And, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m selling my zoom and going for prime lenses only. I’ll try to explain that decision a little more in another blog post.
Throughout the year I’ve worked my ass off to try to get my post processing up to scratch. I learned there are no secrets. Only tips and tricks. Ok, maybe some secrets. But I’m hunting them down. I’ve come miles in my post processing, with many miles to go.
In light of all this, however, here’s what I believe has been my most important accomplishment for 2013: I’m actually making stuff happen. I’m not just going out to see what I can see. I’m building contacts, arranging photoshoots, picking up the phone or sending e-mails to try and create something rather than continue to rely on chance and happenstance to make a good photo. See that photo at the top of the post? Someone had a vision for that, and I worked to make that vision a reality.
That, above all else, I believe is my most important accomplishment.
And, obviously, nothing here would have mattered without the encouragement and support of everyone who has followed Generator Photography. I cannot say “Thank You” enough. Every “like”, every positive comment, every opportunity I’m given I continue to be thankful for. I’m so grateful for everything you have given me this past year.
What’s next for 2014? I’ll try to come up with some ideas in another post.
All in all, I’m more than happy to put right next to “2013” the words, “It was a very good year.”