Sunday, January 13, 2008

Some Project 365 Comments...

Hey gang. So, I've been reading a lot of comments from those of you who decided to participate. I've seen them here, on other blogs, on message boards, in emails to me, etc. about how some of you are already having a hard time thinking of what to take photos of everyday. I'm here to urge you to think about it in some different ways.

* Take photos of your favorite things. The other day, I wasn't sure what to take a picture of. I was cooking dinner and picked up the pewter salt and pepper mills my FIL gave us for Christmas and came to the realization that probably in the next year, those suckers will be one of my photos. I LOVE those things.

* Don't try to get too caught up in the photography aspect of it. Think of it as more of a journaling of year of your life. For example, today Grace had her first day of her indoor soccer league. I ended up not using one of those photos for my project today. But, if I was stuck on a what to take a picture of today and I had forgotten to take my camera to her soccer practice, I would've taken a picture of a soccer ball, so next year, when I saw that photo, I'd remember that today was the day that the league started.

* Try to think of it in your children's eyes. Now all kidding aside, how COOL would it be as adults, if OUR parents had done something like this. I'd LOVE to have a year of our lives documented in photos. If my kids start drawing on any particular day, I take pictures. If one of the girls helps me cook dinner, I take pictures. If Hannah is particularly proud of one of her infamous "outfits" she's put together while getting dressed that day, I take pictures. Try to look at it through the eyes of your kid(s) and ask yourself the type of things they'd want to remember years from now. Is there something you do every night before bed with them that they'll remember (i.e., read a bedtime story, say a prayer, etc.)? If so, take a picture that represents that.

* Realize that even the things that seem insignificant now may be fun to look back at later on. Have a favorite pair of shoes? A favorite purse? A favorite place to eat? A favorite brand of coffee? Take a picture of it. Twenty years from now, you may look at the picture and either laugh about how dorky it was, look at it and get sentimental, or both.

* Have a favorite band you listen to or CD you play on repeat non-stop? Take a picture of it.

* Do you have a habit or addiction? Snap a picture one day of something that represents that habit or addiction. Even if it's something as "silly" as that favorite brand of ice cream that you eat every night.

* Try to think outside the box a bit. The other day, I used one of my Christmas gifts (an Aeropostale giftcard) to order a bunch of stuff online. I snapped a photo of my computer screen with my shopping cart full. That was the night that Hannah needed stitches, so I ended up using that photo instead, but my point is that I had taken a picture of what I had ordered online that day. Your photo doesn't always have to be something "deep" or meaningful. It just has to be something you did/ate/tried/drank/laughed about/etc. that day.

* Your pictures don't have to be deep or meaningful or artsy or anything even remotely close to that. Just TAKE the picture. Are your nails painted that day? Take a picture of them. Are you feeling particularly cranky? Take a picture of that bigass cup of Starbucks coffee that helped lift you out of your funk. Did you just organize your closet? Take a picture of it after you're done.

Do y'all see what I'm trying to say. I know a lot of you are already grasping what to photograph every day, but I find myself trying to decide between 5 or 6 things everyday to use for that day. Try not to think too much about it is my point. And at the same time, think about it a lot. LOL! Since starting 11 days ago, I've started to look at my daily life in a totally different way. I wake up and start wondering what that day's photo is going to be. I look at things in totally different ways (like the salt and pepper mills I mentioned earlier). I think about the things I want myself or my kids to remember next year and then try to think of something I can photograph to represent it.

It's NOT about what other people think or the quality of the photos. It's about YOU. You and the people in your life. You and the things that make you who you are. You and the things that make you tick.

I'm sure there will be days over the next year where I don't think about it much. Or days when it seems like a chore to try to photograph something. But I know that next year, I'm going to have a BLAST looking back everyday to see what we did/saw/thought/experienced exactly one year earlier. Don't think of it as much about the photos, but instead look at it as the journey of your life over the next year.

I know I often find myself without my camera when something happens one day that I'd like to remember. Now that I've started this project, when something like that happens, I immediately start thinking about what I could take a picture of that would spark that memory years from now. For example, the night Hannah needed stitches, I might not have thought to take pictures when we got home. But beyond taking pictures of her stitches, I also took pictures of the doorknob she bashed her head open on. A few years from now, I can look at the picture, and even if Ididn't have pictures of her actual stitches, I'd see that photo of the doorknob and be able to say, "Remember when Hannah split her head open on that sucker?"

If y'all want, I can try to think of a little "theme" every week that all of you participating can use on one of the days you can't think of something to take a picture of. They'll be simple and easy and won't require much thought. But if it helps some of you in a slump, I'm more than willing to give it a whirl.

What the hell. Let's start now. In the next week, IF you can't think of something for the project one day, take a picture of whatever's in your purse that day. Empty the contents of it onto a table and take a picture of it. Even what's in your purse is a little glimpse into your life this year, and I think that's kind of cool. :)

OK. I've rambled enough. I'm tired and need to head to bed. I just don't want to see anyone discouraged or stressed out over the whole concept. It's supposed to be fun, and I, for one, am having a blast!


Kelly said...

Great post Allison! You've given me lots of good ideas here. I even took picture of the sausage I was frying up the other night but then Colby came prancing through the kitchen in the football helmet. I'm excited about this project and it's going to be so cool to look back at the end of the year and reminisce.

Tiffany said...

THanks for the ideas! I like the theme idea. Before readding this I was outside taking pictures of random things and it made be think about things more. Thanks for the encouragemnet.

farmer*swife said...

I love your blog! I'm a newbie; just started my blog today after seeing a friends which was so cute it inspired me. I need lessons! You are a pro! And, I laughed so hard at your bullet post.