Fiona introduced me to the concept of the 365 photography challenge, where you take a photo a day for a year. At first, I thought in the terms of a professional photographer. I mean, I am technically one even though I often don't feel like it. One amazing photo a day! Gods, that sounded daunting. But I like to know what I'm doing, so I looked it up online. I came up with an article from here that tells it all. For the sake of saving you all some of the clicking, I'll reiterate the main points here.

The 365 Photo Challenge was started by Taylor McKnight on January 1st 2004. He realized at the end of the year that looking back at the photos was similar to having his life for the past year flash before his eyes. So he's done it over and over, and he's even written suggestions and tips for other people (Note: Not even photographers. Every day people.) doing it.


How to Guide
Why do it?
Taking a photo a day is a big undertaking with big payoffs. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider doing it:

Imagine being able to look back at any day of your year and recall what you did, who you met, what you learned… (Often we find it hard to remember what we did just yesterday or even last night, let alone a whole year ago!)

Your year-long photo album will be an amazing way to document your travels and accomplishments, your haircuts and relationships.

Taking a photo a day will make you a better photographer. Using your camera every day will help you learn its limits. You will get better at composing your shots, you’ll start to care about lighting, and you’ll become more creative with your photography when you’re forced to come up with something new every single day.

Six Tips on How to Do It
Bring Your Camera Everywhere
Yes, everywhere. Grocery stores, restaurants, parties, work, and school. If you have one of those tiny tiny cameras, you have no excuse not to have it in your pocket all the time. Camera phones are a great substitute.

Make Posting Easy
You can install blog software like Movable Type or Wordpress on your own site and create an entry for each photo, but for true ease of use, try a photo sharing site. Flickr will let you post a week’s worth of photos in 2 minutes flat, and fotolog and Photoblog.com are geared toward a photo-a-day workflow. Making it fast and easy means you’re much more likely to do it.

Vary Your Themes
Try to capture the day’s events in a single photo. Perform photographic experiments. Take a photo of someone new you meet, something you ate for the first time, or something you just learned how to do. Take a photo of something that made you smile. And don’t forget to take a photo of yourself at least once a month so you can remember how you’ve changed, too.

Tell a Story
Use your blog entry, or your photo description, to explain what’s going on in each day’s photograph. How good did that dinner taste? What made you want to take a photo of that stranger? It’ll help you remember down the road, and it gives friends following along a better appreciation of why you took the photo you did. You don’t need to write a lot, just enough to add some color.

Don’t Stop, No Matter What
This is perhaps the most important tip of all. You will get tired of taking a photo every single day. Some days, you will consider giving up. Don’t. The end result is worth the effort. Remind yourself why you wanted to do it in first place.

There will be times you’ll think there’s nothing interesting left to take a photo of, and times you’ll think you didn’t do anything exciting enough to take a photo of. There’s always a great photo to be made.

Get out of the house and take a walk. Or stay inside and look around. Take a photo of something important to you. Take a photo of the inside of your house so you can see how your taste has changed over the years. Take a photo of anything, just don’t stop.

N.b. It helps if you’ve told your friends about the project and asked them to follow along. Their encouragement will keep you going!

Post early, post often
Plan on going through and posting your photos at least once a week so you don’t get backlogged and feel overwhelmed. Ideally, post every day or two. Again, spend the time up front to make sure it’s quick and easy to post. It’ll make all the difference.

Needless to say, the project doesn't feel quite as overwhelming now. I'm using one of my New Years' Eve/New Years pictures for Day 01. Day 02 will be shot after this post. I'm going to try not to get too far behind on uploading. Any "Hey, upload!" texts would be appreciated (if you are actually interested, that is). However, I'll be more prone to ignore them if you don't comment either on my Photobucket (specifically made for this challenge) or here on LJ (which I will only update weekly).

Photobucket: http://photobucket.com/DuchessPariah365

Pretty easy to remember? My friend [livejournal.com profile] phoenyxsansfyr is also doing this challenge. You can look at her photos too!
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