Project 365: What’s the Benefit?

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I thought for a long time that I would never do a project 365. I saw so many others in the midst of one, not finishing it, getting bogged down by it, and sometimes just not enjoying it. For myself, I thought it was tedious and definitely not my thing. I didn’t want the pressure to do it.  I also thought I would be wasting my time.

365-118-smallNow, that I am smack in the middle of one, I am so happy I at least tried it!  I can see why people do it.  It is easier than I believe, and even though it does take time and forethought, I’ve found many benefits.  I may not finish this project, and even if I do I may never do another one.  Then again, maybe I’ll keep going. But even as I’m pushing 180 days, I’ve learned a lot and reaped some good things.  I could quit tomorrow and still call it a success. Whether you are a photographer, a parent, Instagram junkie, or just love taking photos or capturing memories, I think you can find something worthwhile about picking up a project 365.

Some ideas:

    • Improvement – You want to improve your photography or your processing. I started out with the purpose to improve both, so everyday I push to improve.  Occasionally, yes I get only a half-hearted shot for a day, but for the most part if I take a shot and I’m not excited about it, then I go back for more. This alone helps me improve.  Much like pushing myself to run that extra mile helps improve my endurance in running, pushing myself to get a better shot improves my photography. 

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  • Memories – find some great ones in your everyday life.  Getting those great moment shots of my family.  Even if I already feel like I have my 365 shot for the day, if I see something I love about my family or life, then I take the shot.  I may even get a better shot than I had before.  In essence, I have more shots I love and more memories to print and share. I am better at capturing my life and my loves.

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  • Creativity – Do you want to jump-start it or push it further? Most likely you will come up with ideas you wouldn’t have thought before.  When faced with the same old photos everyday you will probably get bored.  To get out of the boredom you can kick your creativity into high gear by trying out new ideas.  What’s to lose? And you may find new ways of shooting that you love. As a result, your photos will become more interesting. 

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  • Experience new things and places.  When faced with the boredom of taking the same photos, you find the motivation to get out and see different things, or at least see the same things in a different way.  Move around, go out, find new things, think creatively, see new angles, and you might find a new way to shoot that you love.  The point is you get out of your normal routine and start doing new things or going to new places.
Day 23 of 365
Day 23 of 365
  • You will find a community – and one that you love.  So many people are doing a 365, even if they don’t call it that, so at some point you will meet other people and gain a few friends or fans.  
Day 4 of 365
Day 4 of 365
  • Storytelling.  I hate to write because I don’t think I am very good at it.  But I love to tell stories – don’t most people?  Photographs are my way to tell a story.  Doing a 365 has helped me hone my storytelling skills in pictures.
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Day 171.365
  • Notice the little things.  Since you are photographing your world everyday, you start to notice all the details.  Those things you might forget otherwise.  Now you can capture those details and keep the memories.  I wrote my recent post – Spring – because I was noticing all the little changes in our backyard with the beginning of spring.  Most of the yard still looked the same, but we have a number of flowering trees and the grass was a little greener.  Without my 365 I might have only noticed it in the back of my mind, but I’ve watched this slow awakening everyday.  Yes, it can be like watching moss grow, literally, but it is beautiful.
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Day 164.365

If you missed these posts, check out 365: What’s the Benefit and 365: What to Consider During.

Check out my 365 photos on Instagram!

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