Winter is a slow month for many photographers.
Instead of suffering with the winter doldrums, I use this time to get myself organized and reflect on my previous year.
It is also an excellent time to focus on personal projects, take time to shoot just for YOU, and try your hand a new skill or two. Here are 10 ways to break the winter photography blues…
1. Use this time to reflect upon the past year.
I find that the slow winter months are the perfect time for me to reflect on my photography. I often use StatCounter and my previous years booking calendar to reflect on my photography bookings. From the data I analyze, I make changes to my business practices for the upcoming year. It’s also a great time to look through your portfolio and analyze your own work.
2. Set goals for the new year.
I am a resolution maker and a goal setter on January 1st. After reflecting on my past year, I make smart decisions for my photography business. Be sure to set S.M.A.R.T. goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely). In 2016, I would like to book 12 weddings and 20 senior sessions.
I don’t know about you… but I get behind on my blogging during the busy fall season. I use the winter months to catch up on all of my blogging and to write some personal blogs, too. Your readers want to know more about you! Let them know who you are as a person, your likes and dislikes, and blog from the heart. My winter blog posts often cover my family, our Christmas and New Year’s Eve, and I even will include some favorite winter recipes and DIY projects.
4. Take classes and workshops.
The off-season, winter months are the perfect time to take some classes and workshops. I believe that great photographers never stop learning! Clickin Moms has some great workshops and breakouts coming up. CreativeLive and Lynda are two other wonderful resources for classes and tutorials to help you take your skills to the next level.
5. Focus on family.
The best part about the winter months is that I have more time to love on my family. During the cold January and February, I love to cook comfort foods for my family and cuddle up on the couch with them for a movie. My daughter and I bake and read and I get to spend more quality time with her. Relish both the quiet and crazy times with your family.
6. Personal projects.
Winter is an excellent time to focus on personal projects. Last winter I wanted to create some magical snow images with my daughter and a senior girl. As soon as it snowed, we headed out to brave the cold for a magical snow session. The images I captured are some of my favorite to date!
7. Update your website or documents.
I update my website and my marketing pieces each winter. It is so important to keep fresh and current images on your website. This winter, I hope to have a new logo designed and change a few things on my website. I also update my Wedding Guide and Senior Portrait Guide that I send out to potential clients at the beginning of each year. It is also the perfect time to raise your prices!
8. Try a new skill.
Each year I work on a new skill in the winter months. Last year I tried my hand at snowflake macros. This year I plan to incorporate more video into my photography and will use the time to make mini-films of my winter adventures and daily life. Whatever you have been wanting to try or learn more about… give it a shot. Whether it’s freelensing, back button focusing, or perfecting your images with a Lensbaby, use this time to try a new skill.
9. Experiment with video.
In our current times, iPhones, point-and-shoot cameras, GoPros and DSLRs have amazing capacities for recording moving films. Experimenting with video is not only fun, but it can benefit your photography business, too. Easy video editing tools such as iMovie give photographers the opportunity to make their own marketing videos for their photography and allow you to create a buzz. Short videos on Instagram can give your followers and potential clients a sneak peek into what it is like to work with you. Furthermore, documenting your family’s daily life is a precious gift that you will cherish for years to come.
10. Connect with local photographers.
During the slower months, I love to connect with fellow photographers in my area. Meeting local photographers for a cup of coffee is a great way to network with others in your field. I have met some wonderful photographers (who also happen to be Clickin Moms) in Northwest Arkansas where I live.
I hope that these 10 tips will help you to enjoy the off-season a little more. Enjoy and cherish this season!