I think I may be one of the most frustrated photographers around. Of course, it's probably not true and many of the photographers I admire and respect say the same thing, I think it's important. There's a developmental philosophy that espouses that to grow, you should be open to frustration, what I call being "hopefully discontent" (with all thanks to Neil Peart). I believe that this can really work when you want to grow as a photographer.
I noted in my 2013 challenge that I am frustrated. I've been thinking on this and have identified a number of "itches" that if worked on, could make me better at my craft. I have the luxury that photography is not my job, as it once was. It is now a pastime, and without the monetary pressures and fiduciary responsibilities that depending on photography for one's livelihood, I have more latitude than some. I am fortunate in this regard.
So without further ado, here's my frustration list
1. When I go out, I capture lots of images, many of them identical. Subtle exposure differences or minor repositionings make the editing process longer and more tedious. Can I make fewer captures, without fear of "missing" something and spend more time working on things I like?
2. Gear does not make one a better photographer, but proper use of gear can help a photographer make better images. I'm fortunate that I have pretty much all the gear I need, although the want list is lengthy. Am I getting a good return on the gear that I own? Do I use it properly? Am I leveraging the effectiveness of the tool? When I was doing cabinetry I forced myself to cut dovetails by hand, because it was harder and required more attention, instead of using a more accurate and faster jig. Should I take this approach with photography.
3. I was working on landscapes and then got caught up in the whole HDR thing. I've had an intervention fortunately and now am much less inclined to HDR images since it actually gets stale pretty quick for me. As a decent generalist, can I pick one or two specialties and focus on them for a year without being distracted by the next thing?
4. I'm not a people photographer. Yet, that is an area I want to get better at. I've taken the courses in portraiture and lighting, and been successful at it. What steps can I be taking to do more people work?
5. I capture shots that I think will be good, but upon review, end up deleting a lot because i don't care for the composition, or because I have missed some critical element. Shooting film was very much a process, digital has become less so. Should I force myself to go shoot film in a very workflow intensive manner to build my eye and ability to see properly?
Being frustrated should create a vehicle to become a better photographer. I'm going to work to answer my own questions, as another photographer, why not take a shot at answering your own questions.