On the 1st January this year I embarked on a project along with many others around the world – Project 365. Overall I am pleased I kept with it but I have had so many emotions about it – I have loved, enjoyed, despised and been excited about it. It hasn’t just helped me to record my year – it has been so much more than that. The project has helped me learn more about my camera – getting it off the auto setting and learn about the world around me. The project has helped me to realize that sometimes I need to slow down, stop, smell and photograph the roses. By taking a photo a day I have learnt that I want a creative career. What I was studying was not making me happy and giving me a ‘buzz’ like I was getting from picking up the camera, editing, being creative.
I think it’s important when you decide to do a project like this to surround yourself (online and in real life) with people who will encourage you to keep with it. I have made so many incredible and wonderfulfriends on Flickr this year and couldn’t have done it without their fantasticencouragement and support. Posting my photos to flickr made me accountable in a way, and on those days where I didn’t want to take a photo – I did. Because I knew that even if it wasn’t my best shot, my friends online would still tell me that I was doing well. It was those days where I didn’t really want to pick up the camera, post the photo, tag it, and sort it into sets and groups – that got me down about the project. I like things to be perfect, but this project has helped me to realize that not everything needs to be perfect, that things can be imperfectly perfect. Those shots taken late at night because I almost forgot – they are still a record of my life and they show that on that day, that time, I was busy, stressed, tired. And that’s okay, because that’s life.
If you are thinking about starting this project – go for it! And you don’t need to start it at the start of the year; you can start anytime! But its important to remember a few things– you will not look back in 10, 20 or 40 years time and think about how bad a certain shot was, you will look back and be thankful you recorded your year. So those shots that you might take at 11pm because you almost forgot? Its okay, you are just recording you were busy. But do try to shoot something in the morning, do not wait for the perfect photo opfor that day – it may still come, it may not. It’s also important to remember that if you need a break from uploading, tagging, and commenting on flickr – that’s okay too. Flickr can be tiring and unplugging can be good – I know that unplugging has helped me to get excited about the project again and get back that ‘buzz’ from just picking up the camera.
I definitely recommend Project 365 – I look at the world differently now, I look through the lens differently; I look at my life and myself differently. But most importantly, I found myself and my true hopes and dreams.
As we near the end of the year, are you nearing the end of a photo a day? Or are you nearing the beginning of a new journey of a photo a day?
Photo and words courtesy of Honorary Sister / Guest Blogger Kylie Townsend (known and loved as Radiant Reflections on Flickr).
If you’re considering taking the 365 challenge you can also read Stephanie’s tips from last year or Tracey’s confessions (where a lot of sisters left comments full of support and super ideas too). Thanks all!
EDITED TO ADD:
Since we last wrote about the 365 Project, we started a brand new Shutter Sisters 365 Flickr group for those involved in the project. Stop by and visit and if you’re a 365 participant, join the group! Who knows you might even be featured on our new 365 daily page here as well! See you there!