So… you’re doing a 365?

Let me share with you my impressions of a 365 project so far.

Let’s face it, as I write this post, I realize that it’s only the beginning of May, so I’m not technically even half way there, and by NO means an expert on this subject, hence I’m sharing my experience and maybe you’ll find yourself nodding your head in agreement with this crazy little journey.

‘technology’ day 119/366

To start, this is not my first attempt. I tried last year. I was seeing all these posts on FB of other photographers getting ramped up about January 1st being around the corner, and how they were going to “rock” this years 365.  I’d never heard of this ‘daily project’ until then, so I thought, how hard can it be? I take TONS of photos, this will be a piece of cake!

Week one and two were easy-peasy. But then, as we know it, life gets busy and then I missed a day or two here and there. I also started to see that I was shooting the same things, and before I knew it, inspiration was at an all time low.  

By day 30, I had maybe a collection of 20 images… and by the end of the year, I’d lost count (and interest) and maybe had 100 in my “365 folder”.

‘floral’ day 80/366

This year, I thought I’d give it another try. At the end of the day it’s just for fun, and if I don’t make it through the whole year, meh… no biggie. What counts is that I tried and that I will maybe learn a thing or two along the way.

I found this post on FB about #thebethadillychallenge.  {}. I thought ‘hmm… maybe that’s what was lacking, I just need to have a daily prompt’.

And so here I am, already past the 100 mark of photo taking and as I mentioned before, it’s only the beginning of May.

‘white on white’ – day 28/366

What have I learned so far from this project? Let me put it like this:

  1. I’ve learned that shooting daily is hard. No candy coating here. It’s hard. While it’s sometimes difficult to be creative on a good day, it’s extremely challenging trying to be creative every.single.dayThe pressure is hard enough facing everyday life, now this? Wasn’t this challenge supposed to be fun? That takes me to lesson number two…
  2. This is a challenge.  It was not designed to be easy. It was designed to push me to think more creatively. Think outside the box. Yup, growing pains are, well, for lack of a better word, painful. One of the most rewarding photos I’ve taken from this challenge was the prompt “Blurry”. Day 19 of the challenge. Day 19! Blurry? What? This goes against everything that I was so desperately trying to avoid. A blurry photo. And now I’m supposed to intentionally take a blurry photos??? So, I decided to dive in.   Yes, I could have taken a photo of motion blur of the cars passing through a busy intersection, but that would not have challenged me. I’d done this many times before. I needed to dig deeper. Feeling a bit deflated, I was walking back to my condo when all I could hear was this frenzy of seagulls by the water. Ugh, they are such a nuisance. But then I stopped and watched these little maniacs dive bombing the cold water, almost as though they were thinking this was their last meal before the lake froze over.  While it is not perfect, I love it, and if it were not for this challenge, I would never have stopped to observe the beauty of this chaos.

    ‘blurry’ day 19/366
  3. I’ve learned to see the beauty in the mundane. I’m starting to watch how pieces of the everyday part of my life are interesting. I’m also being more creative with lighting and angles. I might take 20 or 30 photos sometimes, and I’m watching how my subject changes when I shoot from behind, above, or beside… as well as how the light shifts with each new angle. This is really helpful in stretching my creativity.
    ‘habit’ day 77/366
    ‘a dreaded task’ day 93/366

    ‘routine’ day 65/366

At the end of the day, I learned that it’s not going to be completing a 365 that’s going to make me a better photographer, but rather,  the skills that I will develop along the way. The moment I dread this task, I’ll take a day off or two, and start again. It’s not defeat. not in the slightest.

Also, it’s ok if I take more than one photo in a day. I’m more creative some days than others, and quite honestly I’m too busy to plan a shoot every single day. If I’m feeling the creative vibe, I’ll take five or ten images. Who knows, they might come in handy later, and they will not feel forced. Sometimes to force myself to be creative on a particular day will just lead me to feel frustrated. No fun in that.

So, I keep shooting as often as possible, and I’m careful to keep my number one priority of fun. Skill building is a close second, and actually completing a 365? Well, let’s just say that’s the cherry on top!

D xo

‘horizon’ day 122/366

Published by

Dana Walton

Dana is drawn to the beauty in simplicity within the frame. One who lives by the words "less is more" she translates this feeling into her art. Creative composition and isolating subjects are just a couple of elements that play a strong role within the frame. Finding beauty is its simplest form. Dana lives with her husband, son and two kitties in a small town outside of Toronto, Ontario. When not spending time with family, or shooting, she enjoys baking (just about anything under the sun) or riding through trails on her mountain bike.

2 thoughts on “So… you’re doing a 365?”

  1. Thank you! Thank you Dana! This article is spot on! Thank you for sharing and inspiring not only me but so many others ☺ I love seeing your daily photos and I along with you and so many others I can’t wait for the “cherry on top”!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Christy! I’m so happy that you can relate! I think one of my favourite aspects of this 365, has been all the wonderful friends, like yourself, that I’ve made along the way! Such a great support network. I can’t wait for the “cherry on top” too!! xo

      Liked by 1 person

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