Hi. Don't see an appropriate forum for this so I will ask it of fellow D800 shooters and ask that it be moved.
I have spent probably hundreds of hours studying and reading everything I can find about Landscape Photography and the D800e; calibrated lenses with Focal and have gotten "pretty good" with Lightroom, Nik, Elements, Photomatix and Focus Stacking software. I am a "good" landscape photographer and have an average "good landscape photographer" portfolio. How do I get to the next level? My nature is to start a business so I have a web site with lots of Ooo's and Awaaa's but no sales. The "Advanced Classes" I see online cover stuff I already know. How have you dealt with hitting this wall?
I would say enough with all of the technicalities, get out and shoot. Then look at your images, decide what is lacking or what you would like different, and go out and shoot some more. Repeat as frequently as possible.
If you decide on a workshop, make sure in includes lots of shooting and follow-up critiquing, and as little "classroom" instruction as possible.
And get up early and stay out late at those inconvenient times when the light is most interesting.
Post some results here in one of the image forums or your galleries to show us how you are doing. We can be an encouraging bunch!
Best way is to not upgrade your equipment but upgrade yourself. Shoot, shoot, and shoot much more. Then take workshops with proven professionals whose work you admire for hands on teaching. Then shoot more and more.
Ah yes, I forgot about critiquing. Be very harsh on your own pics and look for people out there who will give you honest assessments of your work.
You do have some nice stuff in your flickr set! Here's an exercise that would be very illuminating. Create a set on flickr and put *only* your 10 absolute best pictures in it. Absolute best as you see them. You'll learn a lot just from that single exercise.
Great! The hardest part is selecting and showing only your best. I've seen too many times where amazing pics get mixed with less amazing. I think it increases both you and your customer's confidence when you only have your best work available.
>How do I >get to the next level? My nature is to start a business so I >have a web site with lots of Ooo's and Awaaa's but no sales. >The "Advanced Classes" I see online cover stuff I >already know. How have you dealt with hitting this wall?
Capturing even better art landscape photos? There are a couple of important considerations. As good as your current collection (on Flickr) seems to generally be, there are some basic post-processing details that need improvement.
I'd also recommend forgetting about online classes of any kind. I think you're at the stage in your photography where advanced classes with master landscape shooters will be infinitely more useful to you. Track down Scott Bourne or Colby Brown or Jack Brauer (there are other master landscapists too) and do one of their landscape workshops. I say if you want to get better, work with the best or at least the best ones whose workshops fit into your budget for this sort of thing.
If you're talking also about the next level of photography marketing, merchandising and sales. I assume you already know that Flickr is not the place to be. Head over to SmugMug and have a long look at the site's ecommerce components and how easy it is for independent photographers to set themselves up. Along with that, you need to develop a professional relationship with an output (print) shop that understands color space, paper and finishing.
Thereafter, it will also be time to concentrate on furthering your knowledge about creating truly excellent prints. I strongly recommend Martin Bailey's new book "Making the Print: Printing Techniques for the Digital Photographer" because if you're in any way struggling or otherwise unhappy with your print quality, Bailey will help straighten things out. If the timing is right (Bailey is regularly in the U.S.), doing one of his workshops is also I must I think.