Wednesday, January 8, 2014

It's A Wrap....and A Fresh Start

by Leigh

January 4, 2013 Day 1-be grateful

Three hundred sixty five days.  365.  Three60Five.  3Sixty5.  ONE YEAR.  No matter how you write it out that's a pretty large span of time.  And somehow I managed to shoot one photo each of those days.  I've got to tell you....I'm pretty surprised…shocked actually, but darn proud of myself!

Day 75-be observant

A bit of history on me....I'm not the best at long term projects.  In fact, my husband used to always tell me that I needed to work on my follow through just like in my tennis game.  If you were to look in my craft room you would see half knitted hats, partially crocheted scarves, all the supplies needed to decoupage coasters, sculpey clay waiting to be turned into beautiful beads, rolls of fabric waiting to be made into the latest upcycle name it and it's in my craft room.  

All of it either not started or sitting unfinished because that's how I roll.  Or how I used to roll.

Day 111-be me

A few years ago I found myself needing a hobby, something to occupy all that extra time in my life (um...what?)  Then I found photography.  I could go on a therapeutic photowalk just me and my camera then come home and download my photos, edit and post.  I could do it all in one day unlike that half crocheted scarf. So I thought to myself I think I will try a 365.  And try is about as far as it got.  I tried in 2011 and I tried again in 2012.  And I failed. Seems like being a working mom of 2 does not allow for much down time to shoot, edit and post my DSLR photos.

Day 270-be dreaming
....but then came along my iphone.  It was always with me, right there in my pocket just in case there was an emergency call from my kids' school or a new client wanting to schedule a meeting.  It is always with me within reach so I decided to give the 365 one more try.  And this time I made it even more specific.  I incorporated it with my one little word for 2013 which was "be".  I chose "be" because it made me focus on the present...on being present.  And so it "be"gan.  It was a moment out of everyday that I stopped to set an intention and to really see something in a new way.  It wasn't always easy.  There were nights at 10:00 when I realized, oh crap I haven't done my photo for the day! But in the long run it was an amazing project that helped me to be more mindful.  It humbles me to see people starting their own daily project because they say I inspired them.  I mean come on…how crazy is that.  I inspired someone to take their camera and to see something and be something for a moment everyday.  Crazy!

Day 313-be repeated

Day 365-be complete!  

365 days of "be"ing is now over and the new year has started. After that last photo there was a sense of relief not having that obligation to post a photo everyday. But now 3 days after my project ended I have to admit...I kind of miss it. I miss having a daily moment and sharing it with everyone. So I'm thinking about new photographic series and I have a couple in mind.  I've joined in with 100x. It's 100 photos through the course of the year with a single focus. I've chosen macros for my project and I am also going to try to shoot all the photos with my Nikon. I've missed her and we need some one on one time. I've also started a new Instagram project called the soundtrack of my life (#loveleeokc_sountrackofmylife) A photo accompanied by the current song from my music library.  Each month I will create a new playlist for myself based upon that month's songs.  Something fun and a little different.  Will I do another 365?  I haven't decided yet, but I just might.  These daily projects don't have to start the first day of the new year so give it some thought and when you decide to do it think about how rewarding it will be at the end of the year when you have 365 moments to look back on.  I can look at day 209 and remember that day when leaving a client's neighborhood I saw a beautifully still pond, blue sky with puffy clouds and a gorgeous reflection in the water.  Each photo takes me back to that moment of being.

#loveleeokc_365 on Instagram to view my 365

How about you?  Are you starting a 365 project this year?  Did you know we have a 365 Flickr group?    Who knows..I might even jump in again myself! Do you have a photographic series?  Tell us about it!


Sarah Huizenga said...

I started my 365 project at the beginning of September. A much better time of year for me than January. So by the time the nasty snow hit I had already established a good habit of shooting something everyday. I have MANY of those unfinished projects as well. I just clean and organize my art room every once in a while and those projects magically disappear.

Carol said...

Love the music idea!!!!! Hmmmmmm.
Congratulations fir a job well done - and the collage looks really great!

AFishGirl said...

So good to read this, Leigh. I laughed about the scarf. And bravo, bravo. For me, no. No 365 projects. I'm dipping my toes this year into Project Life and looking, overall, to simplify, simplify, simplify. I really like to read this blog first thing in the morning. Keep warm.

Jeanne said...

Lovely thing to have finished, and good for you with the perseverence. Something I should think of... Guess I would not be too far behind to get started.

Katie said...

oh my goodness, leigh, i love your final shot for your project! that reflection in your wine glass is incredible.

and yep, after swearing up and down that i was going to NOT begin another 365, come january 2, i really missed it, so i began again. this time around, i'm making myself be more intentional with my subject matter and really making myself work harder on the overall composition. i even made up little prompts to help me throughout the year when i get stuck. good luck with your new adventures!

terriporter said...

If that collage of shots at the end of this post doesn't make everyone want to start a 365, I don't know what would! I have enjoyed following your "be"ing all year and love your ideas for 2014. I did Project Life for two years and then failed miserably in 2012 so I didn't do one in 2013. However, I have started a new one for 2014 and for the very reason you mentioned, having my phone with me at all times and having no excuse to not shoot every day, I think this year I will succeed. Having so many of you doing it with me will be a great encouragement as well. Katie, I like your thoughts on being more intentional and not just snapping away but working on it. Like you, Leigh, I want to get my Canon out more and play. This is going to be a fun year!

Dotti said...

Congratulations, Leigh, on completing your 365! Not only did you complete it, each photo was beautiful. Intentional, and it showed. I'm in the midst of my second 365 and I know how difficult it is to stay inspired, to find ideas ... well, to be intentional. Yes, your final 365 photo was inspired and that storyboard is awesome. I hope you've printed it and hung it somewhere.

Anonymous said...

Great 365 photo collage! Im the same way when it comes to keeping up with a project every single day…what can I say, life happens! When you talk about your craft room, it reminds me of how I need to organize mine…also full of just about anything you would want to finish making, but somehow the camera ALWAYS calls me back! And I love the idea of your soundtrack with a monthly playlist! Have fun, looking forward to seeing more!

Cathy H. said...

Amazing year! You deserve a great big pat on the back! Like Sarah I started a 365 in September (we're in the same group), so it was easy for me to jump right in with Focus on a Photo a Day! Right now, I'm all about nature shots, which can be a little hard in the winter. But, the beauty is out there just waiting to be found and captured! I hope I succeed as well as you have!!

janice said...

Great job finishing your 365 and looking forward to your new projects.

Linda said...

Yay! Congrats on your "be" project's successful completion! Nothing feels as good as finishing a project like that and nothing makes you want to do another one like looking at the completed one! Your soundtrack project sounds great! I can't wait to see (hear?) it.

Linda said...

Yay! Congrats on your "be" project's successful completion! Nothing feels as good as finishing a project like that and nothing makes you want to do another one like looking at the completed one! Your soundtrack project sounds great! I can't wait to see (hear?) it.

susan said...

Stunning images! Especially love that 365 mosaic you put together! What an awesome piece of wall art to hang in your office and reflect upon where you've been…and dream about what lies ahead. I'm still on the fence about a 365, but just like you, I've got my iPhone at arms reach…so I think I need to just jump in especially since I take a photo everyday…right? xo!

Deanna said...

Oh congrats on your completion and your lovely, lovely collection...definitely something to be proud of. I hope you will have this printed and displayed, it is definitely a work of art!!

Kim Stevens said...

Well that's a project to be proud of, and I for one loved seeing you "be" photos! Your new project sounds like a lot fun and look forward to hearing it. xo

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