When I was pregnant with my son, Luca, I started thinking about a 365 project. At the time, I was not a photographer. I didn't have a fancy camera, and up until that point, I had mostly taken selfies and pictures of my breakfast.
The idea for this project came from my mom who completed a similar project to commemorate the year she turned 50. I wanted a collection of photos for my new baby, so I decided I would start my project on the day he was born. I thought this project would be an amazing gift for him to look back and see what life was like when he was little. Looking back now, It's amazing to see how much Luca changed over that first year! Those first 12 months with a baby can be such a blur, and my daily photos helped solidify my memories of early motherhood.
What is a 365 Project?
The goal of a 365 project is to take one photo every single day for an entire year. January 1st is a popular time to start one of these projects, but your project could begin any day you'd like! Birthdays and other big milestones are also popular days to begin a project like this.
What should you photograph?
You can pick a theme, or just take pictures of whatever moves you. As I mentioned above, the goal of my first project was to capture photos of my son's first year. Some popular themes I've seen include, capturing daily photos of your children, or snapping a daily photo of things that bring you joy. Not into taking photos? I've also seen people record daily videos instead of taking pictures.
What Tools do you need?
You don't need a fancy camera to complete a 365 project! There are so many tools out there to help make a project like this incredibly simple. Film Born and VSCO are great for editing phone photos. Collect will help you track, store and and keep your images organized. No surprise here, but Instagram is ideal for Sharing your project with family and friends who want to follow along. If you are interested in video over photos, I recommend using the 1 Second Everyday app. This app allows you to store a collect a daily video. At the end, you have a 365 second video of your year!
Be Kind To Yourself!
Taking on a 365 project is a big commitment. Know there will be days when you don't take a photo or you don't love the photo you took. Be kind to yourself and remember that this is ok. We all have days like this, that's part of life! Don't let a minor set-back detail your project. I promise, if you commit to the project, you will be amazed by the end result!
Find some friends!
Finding a group of like minded friends who are also interested in completing this project will help you succeed. If you need some support, let's connect! I have a Facebook group for mamas who are interested in this project! You don't need need to know anything about photography to join, you just have to have a desire to document your everyday life!
Print your project!
If you are going to take on a project, make sure you celebrate your accomplishment at the end by printing your work. There are lots of great options for printing photo books online. Set-up an account with Chatbooks, and they will automatically print your photos and send you a phonebook overtime you post 50 photos to Instagram.
A 365 was the best thing I ever did for my photography!
When I started my first 365 project, I had no idea that it would change the course of my life. At the beginning, I was a mom taking photos with her iPhone. I didn't care about lighting, composition or any other rules of design. I just snapped a photo when I was inspired by Luca and his cuteness. Within a year, something in me had changed. Somewhere along the journey, I morphed into a photographer. I started shooting with a DSLR, I took a few photography courses and I decided that one day, I wanted to be a professional photographer.
Today, taking daily photos is part of my routine and photography is central to my personal and professional identity. This would have never happened without my very first 365 project! Have you ever completed a 365 photo project? Would you consider one for 2018? Let me know in the comments! I'd love to help you get started!