I'm so proud to say that my first ever 365 project is finished!
But this was not the first time I had ever attempted a photo a day project – it was my fourth.
For the previous three years I set out on January 1 with the aim of taking a photo each day for a year and each year I had given up by March. I thought taking a photo each day would be easy, but it wasn’t. There were the same excuses: “Life’s too busy; Don’t like the prompt; Don’t have any ideas; Don’t feel like taking a photo today” ……. and the list goes on.
So what changed the fourth time around?
On 1 January 2014 I told my family about Capture Your 365, the daily prompts and what I planned to do. They were happy to help, giving me ideas, being my models and lending a hand when I needed one. The secret to my success was to not do this alone.
So what did I learn over the past year?
- If you take a photo every day it will become a habit. I now expect to take a photo at some part of the day.
- Taking a photo every day will make you a better photographer. I have seen an improvement in my photography since the start of the year and even sold some of my images that I have taken as part of this project.
- Following the prompts will stretch your creativity. I found the prompts challenged me to take images I would not have attempted in the past.
- It’s okay to not follow the prompts. Life happens. Sometimes you or a family member gets sick. Sometimes the daily photo has nothing to do with the prompt. It’s important to capture everyday life.
- Self-portraits are no longer scary. Being the photographer in the family, I was always the one behind the camera and there were never any pictures of me. Now I enjoy being in front of the camera and am glad that I have some photos of me to share with my family.
- Your torch will be your new best friend. Life does get busy and many times throughout the year I didn’t get to take my daily photo until after dark. At first it was challenging but now I love taking photos by torchlight.
- You will put you camera in unusual places. In order to get 'that' shot, sometimes you need to do something a little different.
- Being part of a community of photographers is important. It’s wonderful to know that there are others doing this project too. I have loved sharing in everyone’s daily lives, to see snow while trying to keep cool during an Aussie summer, to see everyone’s families including the fur babies, and to be privileged to share in the deep personal moments such as the joy of a new addition to the family or the sad loss of a loved one. Even though I have not met anyone in person, I feel as though I have many lovely friends that I have connected with thought the year by sharing in photos and comments.
So what’s next? In 2015 I’m doing it all again. Why don't you join in over at Capture Your 365. It doesn't need to be January 1. You can start at anytime. I hope I’ll see some familiar faces along with some new ones.