Happy New Year! The start of a new year brings new resolutions as well as a reflection on the last year.
If you follow me on Instagram, then you probably already know that I challenged myself to take a picture every day for the whole year last year (sometimes known as Project Life, 365 days, or a Picture A Day). Almost all the photos were taken with my Nexus 5 because I’m too lazy to take photos with my Canon and then upload them right away. For 328 days, I did this without fail, jumping out of bed at 11:30 if I realized that I had forgotten to take a photo. Then I started to forget…work got a little crazy, I was traveling, and one night I just forgot. But since I was so close to the end, I gave myself a pass and kept going.
There were nights when I wanted to just give up and not do it anymore. There’s certainly some photos that I’m not proud of. But in the end, I’m really glad I did it and here’s why:
- It forced me to be on the lookout for something to photograph – to be more alert about my surroundings and to find beauty in the everyday.
- I experimented with a lot of different apps and found my editing style on my phone. Increase exposure, adjust temperature, and a VSCO filter – usually A6 (Analog) or M4 or M6 (Moody).
- I learned that you can take good photos with your phone. It’s not the tools you have, but how you use them. Even some of my photographer friends were completely fooled into thinking some of the photos were dSLR photos when in fact it was just my cell phone.
- I have a whole year’s worth of photos that document what I was doing every day. Because I usually don’t take photos of the low times, it’s a great way to look back and remember all the great things that happened last year – from trips to Mexico, Portland, Seattle, Japan, Italy, France, New York to all the daughters born to our friends this year (Sophie-Lang, Inika, Hannah, Kate), there’s a lot to be grateful for.
I’ve compiled a gallery of all the photos in the project below. I don’t know if I’ll do it again this year…it’s a lot of work. Maybe there’s a different challenge to try out…