In 2016, a number of my friends did a “photo a day” challenge—some with a theme, some without. I’d sort of tried it myself a few times, but didn’t have the discipline to make it stick for very long. Plus, I think I made my job too hard, trying to post it to my blog, Twitter and Facebook at the same time. And Flickr, too, which is even more of a pain from the phone app. There may have been plugins to help me to that, but it didn’t seem worth the effort.
But then I rediscovered my Instagram account, which I had for a while but hadn’t done anything with, and figured this was a good enough channel. And then, on New Year’s Day, the first one up in my brother’s apartment, I took a picture out the window and posted it.
And… I decided to keep on doing that. The really amazing thing is that I have. One hundred days, one hundred photos. One photo a day, every day. I did come close to breaking my streak a couple times, posting right under the buzzer before midnight. And sometimes I just wasn’t feeling inspired and just took a photo of my neighbourhood. Or once when I was feeling ill, just going outside shooting the street in front of my apartment (because seriously, I didn’t want to show pictures of my messy place).
But I’ve kept up the challenge, and it feels good. At first I was a bit stressed out over the need to be on the looking for things to photograph. Also, I’m kind of a creature of habits, and I didn’t think I’d find a variety of interesting scenes in my daily routine. And it’s true, it did feel like a bit of a chore at first, until I got in the right frame of mind. But again, there are so many details and fresh perspectives that make the most mundane things fascinating, I just have to I just have to keep my eyes and mind open, and listen to my instincts. Besides, the world is constantly changing, new things always pop up.
That doesn’t mean I can’t experiment. On January 25th I did a cool black-and-white thing (that I don’t think has really aged well, but whatever, it felt good at the time); textures, on a couple of occasions; shooting from close to the ground; and so on.
I’m still feeling my way, to be honest (aren’t we all?). But I like where it’s going. I feel I’m developing a better eye for what will make a nice photo. And now, after this little milestone, I’m going to up my game a little. From now on, every 5 days I will write a blog post about my most recent photos. I desperately need to get back into blogging, and this will be a great focus for that.
And hey, on a brand new blog, too! The old one’s still around, and I might bring all its content here someday.