This time of year is notorious for resolutions, plans, and starting projects. We are all vowing to be better, do more, and accomplish more.
We are just three weeks in, and I’ve already painted and redesigned my family room, feeding off the fumes of fresh starts and new beginings. With that out of the way, I started thinking about a photography project. Much of the time I have to approach photography within the frame of business and earning a living, but it’s also my creative outlet. It helps me spread my creative wings and come up with new ideas. It helps me live in the moment and at the same time, it allows me to document my family’s lives for ourselves as the years go by and for generations to come. I look forward to sharing my images with my grandchildren.
There are all sorts of photography projects. I have started and quit quite a few 365 projects. In case you do not know, a 365 project is where you commit to creating one photograph every single day. It’s a lot of fun, but inevitably becomes a lot of work after a few months. If you are better at routine than me, the final product is priceless and in essence, becomes a time capsule of a year in the life of your family. It gives you the opportunity to record really big moments as well as the priceless little moments that may not typically be the perfect subjects for photography.
I looked into a few other ideas that don’t take quite as much commitment. There is something called 52 Saturday Mornings that really stuck a chord. Around the Levine household, Saturday mornings are one of two things: lazy time to stay in our pajamas far too late in the day, or filled with travel soccer games near and far. Both of these situations are prime opportunities to capture exactly what life is like in this season for our family. There is an instagram account dedicated to this concept. Check it out here.
Another fun photography adventure is the ABC project. You’ve seen the posters that spell out a word or name with photographs that reveal a letter in unexpected places. Check out this example on Pinterest. This project takes patience and an eye for the abstract. If you travel a lot or spend time in the city, this is a great concept for you. I have a friend who loved this artwork and instead of purchasing a poster, her husband took the time to find every letter to spell out every member of the family’s names. How cool!
You don’t need a fancy “professional” camera to partake in a photography project. There are some amazing examples of iPhone-only projects out there. The great thing about this activity is that we always have our phone with us. If you put any effort in, you will quickly get a strong grasp of essential photography basics such as composition and framing and really start to learn how essential light is to every image. It doesn’t have to be an iPhone. You can get the same results with a point and shoot, disposable film camera, and I plan on utilizing my daughters Fuji Instax Mini and my Diana F Medium Format film camera. These are essentially toy cameras but when you are limited to the functionalities of these cameras, you are forced to be creative with the tools you do have; i.e. composition, light, framing, perspective, etc. The other thing about this fun contraptions is they each have a very unique look to the photograph. Think real life instagram filter!
The last photography project I will tell you about is the project that I am dedicating myself to this year: Project 52. This is very similar to the 365 but I am only obligated to one photo a week. Even I can make that happen. The other thing that appeals to me about this, is that there are endless Project 52 lists that give you a weekly theme. I can refer to the list for my direction for the week instead of getting lost in too many ideas. Here are a couple of lists.
I am excited to begin my project even if I am a couple weeks behind. I’ll catch up in no time. I’ll be posting my project here on the blog and if you decide to participate in a photography project let me know! I want to see. Have fun!