I set myself just three resolutions last year, and I’m happy to report that I succeeded with them all in varying degrees!
The first was to save up for some photography equipment – I saved up for two things, the first of which is a gorgeous Nikon AF-S VR 70-300 f/4.5-5.6 which was a godsend for shooting gigs and festivals this year. Ever since I got Snufkin (my D300) I’ve not had a “zoom” lens, which I feel has made my concert photography much less engaging than before; it was a constant struggle trying to frame things, knowing that I would always end up cropping them in the final image. I took the 70-300 to Wickham Folk Festival and Fairport’s Cropredy Convention, as well as numerous Shamus O’Blivion Gigs. It’s a hefty hunk of glass, so I try not to take it with me wherever I go, but I’m very happy that I decided to buy it (it was a rather princely sum to shell out, and I umm’d and ahh’d about it for a long time!).
The second piece of equipment I bought… Well, you might not consider it to be equipment! As my reward for completing my 4 Simple Goals, I decided to go ahead and buy one of the stunning bags by Jo Totes. It is much bigger and sturdier than any of the camera bags I’ve had before, and as a huge plus, it hurts my back a lot less, too! (Yeah, not saying my back doesn’t hurt at all, because camera equipment is rather heavy…) I’m really glad that I saved to buy both of these things, because they’ve definitely impacted my photography in a positive way!
The second was not to buy any books for myself. It was a bit of a struggle, as I got a book voucher as a gift when I left my job at the landscaping company (yay! I can use it now!), but nonetheless, I succeeded!
The third and final was to use common sense when buying clothes – to buy ethically as much as possible and not to buy on whim. I didn’t do as well with this resolution as I could have done – I bought a dress from an online shop which didn’t suit me in the slightest… I plan on wearing it a few times and then charity-shopping/hand-me-down-ing it, but wish that I hadn’t bought it! Otherwise, I’ve not bought much clothing this year and stuck to the goal pretty well overall!
So! What are my goals for 2014, then? I took a week to think about them properly, and it seems that I’m continuing in the same vein for the most part…
- Buy only clothing that I consider to be ethical. Don’t buy any clothing that I can’t “justify” the purchase of. Throw an item of clothing out for every item of clothing I do buy.
- Read and chuck at least 30 books. If I don’t manage to read 30, I still have to chuck 30 (!) which should give me the incentive to get that reading done!
- Save £££. Mainly for the Asia adventure (Dave and I fly out to Delhi in early September and don’t return to the UK until late November, eee!).
- Learn some key phrases/basic words AND USE THEM whilst travelling. I usually only master and employ “hello” and “thank you” whilst travelling, partially because I’m scared of saying things wrong. Not this year!
- Continue to purge possessions. 2013 saw me donating loads of stuff to local charity shops… And I’m still surrounded! My goal is to donate books, CDs, clothes, DVDs, camera equipment (!) and anything else I don’t need/use regularly to a charity shop (or to give to someone who needs it).
- To complete a photo an hour post/session once a month. I realise this might not work out, due to my work shifts and stuff… So if this isn’t feasible, I’ll drop it to quarterly posts. I really enjoyed doing the photo an hour post I did before, and want to give myself the incentive to do it again!
- Get more crafty. I’m leaving this goal open, because I know what I’m like… But I’m aiming for: a bit of knitting, a bit of crochet, a bit of doodling/drawing, a bit of painting, a bit of decorating… Anything artistic that isn’t photography, really.
- Send snail mail at least once a month. I expect the receiver will always be Caroline, mind! (Feel free to send me your address, then it could be you!)
- As always, I’d like to be trying a bit harder with my photography. I feel like I easily fall into “a rut” and end up using the same ideas and techniques over and over again. Without having a regular project like The Teleidoscope, I think I’ll find this even harder than usual! So, I’m going to try to set aside time for planning and executing ideas. Yay!
- Eat more fruit and vegetables. Oy. I never thought such a sentence would end up on one of my lists, but being on assignments at work makes me really lazy with eating properly, so… I really need to get nibbling on some more greens!
Phew! Just a few things to aim for… Do you have any goals for 2014?