Photo Mosaic of my June 2008 Project 365 Photographs
Project 365 is a challenge - not a competition. The basic idea is that you commit yourself to taking one photograph a day for a year. You may choose to post it online but you can keep it to yourself if you want to. I completed Project 365 between 29th December 2007 and 28th December 2008. I started a second series on 1st April 2011.
Apart from being fun most of the time, Project 365 has several benefits:
- It makes you get your camera out.
- It sharpens your powers of observation and composition.
- It makes you think more about making photographs.
- It makes you find photographs in the most unpromising of situations - whatever you are doing and wherever you are, you have to take a photograph today. After you have done this a few times, you will never again say or think that there is nothing to photograph - there is always something to photograph. Your photography will improve. It just has too or you will not finish the project.
You do have to rid yourself of the notion that you are going to try to take 365 masterpieces. Some days just getting a photograph taken - any kind of photograph is an achievement. It is fairly easy at first. There are probably lots of subjects easily available that will get you through the first month or so. Then it starts to get more difficult. Here are some of my coping strategies:
- Take a photograph early in the day. It does not much matter what it is like - at least you have got something that you can use. It takes the pressure off. You can try and find something better during the rest of the day. When I have not been able to follow this advice, I have sometimes found myself desperately looking for something to photograph late at night. One time, I was reduced to photographing a lamp in my hotel room. Taking a photograph early is especially important during the winter when the hours of daylight are short and you might be travelling to and from work in the dark.
- Have a few themes. In my first Project 365 set I tried to take a self portrait each month and to photograph our front and back gardens from the same viewpoint each month. I also took photographs of doors and windows; churches; flowers and trees. In my present set, I have featured photographs of benches, buildings, sculptures and tombstones. These themes all make it easier to find a photograph especially when original ideas are hard to come by. If you already have an idea of what to look for, the photographic potential of your surroundings will become more obvious.
- Take a camera everywhere. You probably cannot carry a DSLR all of the time but a compact camera or a mobile phone camera will enable you to take a photograph whenever the opportunity arises.
- Photo Mosaic of my June 2011 Project 365 photographs.