First of all may I wish everyone a Happy New Year.

Photography in 2012 from where I stand, looks like it will be a real mix, depending on where you are in the scheme of things, expectations and ambitions.

The enthusiast likes to see new exciting equipment, and I am sure, even allowing for world economics and natural events in parts of Asia during 2011, we will still see plenty.

I expect too see more, better and faster, being common terms of description in the relentless march of camera technology. New technology and evolution of existing capabilities will keep peoples interest.

However, we may I suspect, see prices move in the wrong direction alongside, due to the above and other factors, which in turn may do further things.

It will be interesting to see how D SLR and other camera sales go. Maybe not as buoyant as some would hope overall, in fact some concepts may find it a little too tough, but I could (hopefully) be wrong?

It may also mean that although many look longingly at new products, they may just decide to stick for the time being with what they already have. Especially if it is doing the job. We may even see an increasing revitalised second hand market.

Add in new software, plus accessories such as optics and others and there is still enough to enthuse many in a technical sense.

But what about the professional photographer?

I can see in some areas 2012 being a difficult year. There are simply various genres of work where the going rate is dropping, as more people try to carve a living from it, and in turn attempt to offer ‘attractive’ prices.

That tends to drive prices down for most in those fields as a consequence. While that may work at first, it is normally unsustainable year after year. That said there is always a need for fresh faces, so I do not wish to discourage anyone.
In fact, such is the appeal of being a pro photographer still, that many are entering the field as a second career, let alone those in the earlier stages of their working lives. But proper advice and preparation will pay in the long term.

However, there are other areas where falling rates is not so much of an issue. You will have had to learn the ‘craft’, as our technical tools both capture and post capture alone are not enough. But those that can do it, are then able to command better rates. Ultimately, it still comes down to the driver

More and more creative ways too create and promote pro photography are also springing up all the time and there is a need to keep up with that that. But you should also be aware of spending too much time, effort and finance on that unfocussed, because you could end up busy, but not actually working as a photographer.

As for the bottom line, the imagery, well 2012 is packed with potential.

In the UK, alongside the as of yet unforeseen events on a local, national and international scale, we have the Queens Diamond Jubilee and of course the Olympics to look forward too.

They alone should offer the potential for ‘historic’ images we are looking back at long after the event, as well as future generations.

But no matter why you are interested in photography, I hope you can look back on 2012 as being a productive year for you, with many images to be proud of.

As for my courses, I will continue to combine the proven ‘craft’ skills learned over decades, with my technical skills where the latest equipment is concerned for those interested, with some new options in 2012 alongside the popular and proven ones.

Best wishes,

John.

End. (03/01/12).