Any photography project done over the course of a year seems epic. But let’s break it down to a single day and a single task – a single photo every day…for only a year. Now, that doesn’t seem too impossible does it? I did talk about how it can improve your photography while seeding memories with opportune clicks. 365 day photo challenges are not just about capturing photos over the course of a year; they are also about documenting your maturity as a photographer. One of the other benefits is that it could spur your creativity as it makes you scout for a single snap to click each day.
My friend Bakari gave you the tips to set out with your own 365 day photo project and become a better photographer. Before you set out, let me give you five fine examples of accomplished photographers with their personal 365 day photo projects who show us the creative horizons we can all aspire to. And one extra site you can use to trigger ideas.
Brazilian photographer Tunisio Alves Filho’s yearlong project had one simple subject – a lighthouse. More specifically, the Barra lighthouse at Salvador, Brazil. The difference between each photo was in the location and composition. That’s something difficult to wrap your head around; how do you shoot a single subject with a different perspective in every snap over the course of 365 days? The lighthouse is a well-known landmark and frequented by tourists. But each photo I am sure captures it in ways a frequent visitor would also find fascinating. This unique 365 photo project gives us aspiring photographers a lesson in how to break through creative blocks.
Clouds are easier as a photo project subject perhaps. You get a new pattern every day. But to shoot them with the right hues takes some skill. It helps that Kelly DeLay is a landscape photographer. His personal goal was to shoot a photo (or a video) of a cloud every day for a year. He didn’t stop at the 365th day, and has continued shooting. Now, its 1594 days and counting. I liked what he says on his About page:
I started the Clouds 365 Project on July 1, 2009, as a commitment to do something creative every day. There are no rules; I just want to react and see where this project takes me.
Well, it has taken Kelly far as the project has been repeatedly nominated for the Webby Awards.
You don’t have to wait for the weather to change for this 365 day photography project. 18 year old photographer Brendon Burton started his project on Flickr last year and made a name for himself as a few photography websites picked it up with a mention. His project is a perfect example of using such a project to see oneself evolve as a photographer. You only have to look at his first and latest photos. His Flickr photostream is dominated with self-portraits. The photos are melancholy but utterly eye-catching. I focused on his project because using one’s own self as a photography subject should be one of the easiest things to accomplish even if nothing else comes to the fore.
A brazen Star Wars fan will definitely include this 365 day project. The centerpiece of attraction as far as I could go are the two Hasbro toys (and other figurines from the Star Wars universe) who are placed in different “situations” and photographed against creative backdrops. This for me, is one of the cheapest ways to go about a 365 day project.
I found another similar example of Project 365 on Teymur Madjderey’s (IcedSoul) Flickr photostream.
This is not technically a 365 day project, but it is something far more substantial. It also demonstrates how far you can stretch a simple idea if you are willing. “World’s Best Father” is Dave Engledow who started documenting the life of her daughter, Alice from her childhood. She was born in 2010 and his photography project started soon after. This personal project morphed into a Kickstarter campaign to create a photo calendar composed of the top images he shot of his daughter. Needless to say, he succeeded.
Project Life 365 aims to be a photo project “without borders”. I chose to go with this photo-a-day-challenge prompter because of the sheer number of ideas for photo inspiration. You can use a regular DSLR or a cameraphone to kickstart a small project from the cue this community sends out every day. You can share your photos on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, or even your own blog. The idea behind this community is to develop your visual literacy, and the daily prompts are the spark to start you off as you expand your own photography skills while learning from the photos shared by others as well. Project Life 365 has other resources to share which you can avail with a free sign-in.
365 day projects or any other personal photography projects are easy to set up. If you can stick to the simple discipline (it becomes a habit) and simpler rules, you can be sure to have something worthwhile on the 366th day. As with everything else, the Web gives you many places to share the one photo every day. You can also set up your own photo blog with the help of our free guide and create a more independent place for your Project 365. But it all starts with an idea.
What’s yours? Have you done a Project 365? Do share the tips you collected along with the photos.