Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My Year in Photos

by Kelly

Well so before I even begin this blog post I am going to state for the record that I am in complete denial that today is the last day of the year.

However it does seem fitting that today is my regularly scheduled blog post since I am also wrapping up my very first photography 365 project.

A year in photos.  Taking one photo everyday.  It sounds daunting I know.  In all truthfulness, I was a little nervous when I embarked on this journey 364 days ago.  My biggest fear?  What in the world would I take a picture of everyday?  How would I find anything interesting to photograph in my ordinary life on a daily basis?

Turns out...the more I took pictures, the more I found to take pictures of.

Sometimes I found inspiration in adventures such as my trip to Dallas last spring where I got meet Terri and Leigh in person.

And then sometimes inspiration was right in my own backyard.

One of my goals in taking on this project was to become a better photographer. Because like any endeavor, consistency and practice are the best ways to improve your skill.  And so naturally becoming more proficient at nailing exposure and focus was important to me.  But even more than that, I wanted to learn how to better capture my ordinary life.  The way I saw it in my mind's eye.  My heart's eye.

It's interesting, though, what happens when you start training your eye to see the joy and wonder of your everyday life.  Because pretty soon, you'll start seeing it everywhere.

Even when the stresses and frustrations of real life start to bring me down, there is nothing like a photo walk to lift my spirits.

In the course of this past year, my passion for photography is still in its ability to capture and preserve joyful moments.  But what I have also discovered is a sincere and profound gratitude for the joy that seeing life from behind the lens can bring.

For the past few weeks I've been pondering what's next for me in my journey with photography. And the funny thing is that I started to get a little bummed out at the idea of not taking a photo a day.  But then I thought to myself, who says I have to stop.  For me taking a photo everyday has become something of a habit...like exercising or brushing my teeth.  It's sort of the way the I see the world now. The way I see my life.

So now I would love to know...what are your photography plans for the new year?  If you happen to be embarking on a photography 365 project, I would like to invite you to share your images with us in our new Focusing on Life 365 Flickr group.  I will be there and I would love to connect with you.  Because the one thing I know for sure is that the friendships I have made have been one of the greatest blessings in my journey with photography.

So I guess, as they say, that's a wrap!  Today I am bidding farewell to 2013 and the year I became the photographer that I had always hoped I could be.  Happy New Year dear friends!  Wishing you every joy and blessing in the coming year!

Love, Kelly


Sarah Huizenga said...

Those 365 projects have a way of doing that to you, hooking you in and getting under your skin. I am a third of the way through my first one. Some days are great some are mundane, but it is the practice that is the really joy.

Silvina Soave said...

Son preciosas todas tus fotos!!!. Yo quiero empezar también algún proyecto o reto fotográfico este nuevo año, tal vez uno similar al tuyo.Espero tener la constancia suficiente.
Un fuerte abrazo y FELIZ 2014 para ti y los tuyos!

Carol said...

Wow Kelly! I have been playing with Flipagrams all week-which are a very fun toy , but you have reminded me of the real joys of looking back. You have reminded me to review my year, to see my photographic progress, and to feel again the feelings that I experienced that made me want to take each picture . These choices are perfect and these photos are absolutely beautiful! I actually have been trying to match up to the piano shot since you took it! I did a 365 two years ago and it was my greatest teacher. Last year I did ( almost) 365 shots of my kitchen table for Instagram. I think this year I will try a ,365 and include the kitchen table only when it strikes me. But I want to be more organized about it. I love the way our FOL friend Maria (Echie52) makes a month end montage of her best each month. I may try that! Now to figure out my word for the year........

Katie said...

after doing a 365 for three consecutive years in a row, i think 2014 may be seeing me step back and not do one. but knowing myself, and like you said, it's become such a habit by now, i'll probably still take photos every day. it's a real comfort and therapy, this photography thing, isn't it?

Linda said...

Kelly, I am such a fan of your photography! Just beautiful images. You really do capture everyday things and make them magical! I look forward to starting a 365 journey with you!

terriporter said...

I did a 365 two years in a row and then skipped last year but I have to agree that I could really see the growth in my photography when I was shooting every day. I'm starting a new 365 project tomorrow for 2014 and am really looking forward to it, especially because I'll be doing it with you and so many of my sisters and our readers! Always fun to see what everybody else is doing! Kelly, your photos are beautiful and brought back some very sweet memories. Excited to spend the next 365 days with you!

Kim Stevens said...

Well Kelly, I'm pretty much gobsmacked (that's a good thing) with your photography, you have such a beautiful style. Try as I may to photograph in my home and it's just a disastrous mess. Still can't decide if I'm doing, formally, a 365 yet....although there is rarely a day that goes by when I don't pick up my camera, and the over 160,000 clicks I've made since I got my camera two years ago can account for that. I'm just not sure people want to see pictures of bugs for 365 days, haha. Fun memories at the "Bean"!

CarolHart said...

Great images Kelly! I look forward to seeing what you create in 2014. Happy New Year!

susan said...

what a wonderful way to end the year…by being able to look back through your daily photos! thank you for the inspiration kelly! xoxo

Dotti said...

I remember so many of these photos but enjoyed seeing them again! I do love your style, the way you use light. I'm still working on that. As for the 365, I'm right smack dab in the middle of a 365 since I started on July 1. My first 365 was a couple of years ago. There are days when I'd think: maybe I should do a half-365 {ha!} but then along came Linda with our FOL 365 group and that's just the jumpstart I needed. The idea of doing this with FOL folks has me pumped! Happy New Year, Kelly, to you and your family AND TO EVERYONE AT FOL! Love you all.

Unknown said...

Your images are beyond gorgeous and inspiring and you are so tempting me to join in with you and the 365 project ... yikes! ;)

janice said...

Kelly, I am in awe of your 365 endeavor... such beautiful photos and an awesome journey for you!

Unknown said...

Kelly as you write this I am at day 185 of my Project 365. I started out with the intention of doing a month, I needed the practice to improve my skills to take photos for my blog. One month led to another and now at day 185 yes it is like brushing my teeth.
Thank you for sharing your journey and I plan to join in over on Flickr

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