A Photographic Journey

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I Just Finished Shooting 365 Pictures of the Day!

Exactly a year ago, I published my very first POTD or Picture of the Day. It was shot in a doctor's reception room, clandestinely, as I waited for my mother to finish her visit. You can see it here. As I've mentioned before, the project came out of a conversation with my father, a retired National Geographic staff photographer. He more or less challenged me and I more or less accepted.

Back then, I notice, I gave more information, but after a few more, all I noted was the location where the pic had been taken.

As the project continued, I began to discern certain geographical themes: the Metro, my neighborhood in Silver Spring, the National Gallery of Art were a few. And I've noticed themes aesthetically as well: centering the main subject matter, shooting for color and adhering to an architectural grid. Of course, if you're going to shoot 365 pictures and publish one every day, eventually you have to make some shortcuts.

Soon my neighborhood lost it's allure, as did the Metro, so I expanded my subject matter and locations, taking my camera (a Canon G11, without which I never could have done this project) with me everywhere. I also realized I couldn't take a picture every day: it was simply creatively impossible. So I made up new rules, and gave myself new permissions- I could wait a week if necessary, I could use multiple pictures from one days' shoot and, most importantly, not all the photographs had to be perfect. Believe me- there are some pretty mediocre pics in the last 365. But, hopefully, not that many.

Sometimes I'd stumble upon a subject that seemed too rich for the POTD, so there are also several photo essays, or portfolios, along the way. I recommend these as well, as I know that, as soon as you read this, you're going to pour over all the pictures contained in the blog. Just kidding.

Here's what has happened: I've gone from a scary indifference toward photography dating back to around the early part of 2000 and am now shooting constantly. I've learned an awful lot about digital- what it does well, what it does poorly. I've forced myself to interact with complete strangers and have been, for the most part, pretty successful (see this post from the other blog for an exception). Everywhere I've traveled in the last year has yielded one or more POTDs, including Los Angeles, San Francisco and New Orleans, and I've been extraordinarily fortunate to be able to make those trips.

The main goal was to publish 365 pictures, all of them shot specifically for this blog, before January 18th, 2012. Simple as that.

That goal has been fulfilled.

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