This year is the first year I have been able to get a proper project365 going after seeing some of the excellent results from last year. I have kind of done a project365 before when I attempted to photograph my son every day for the first year of his life. I eventually did it only missing about 10 days overall, most of those due to him spending an extra week in SA with my wife.
So when I saw chat on twitter about getting started with another project365 for this year I thought why not. I'm settled with using my iPhone, been blogging a lot more extensively this year and feel comfortable with the tools I use there so decided to go for it.
To get yourself started I think the following four things should be thought about:
- What are you going to present?
- Is there an over riding theme?
- How are you going to present it?
- Where are you going to present it?
I will also look at
5. Tips for tagging and managing your #photo365
6. Benefits and educational applications
So lets get cracking
1. What are you going to present?
The majority of project365's which people do seem to be using photography. It's a natural and easy to understand medium. Very few people don't have access to a digital camera of some sort and I would wager that the vast majority of people reading this have a camera on their phone which can also connect to the internet. Therefore taking a picture and uploading it to the internet through your phone is a logical, quick and very easy to understand method of doing a project365.
Of course you don't need to restrict yourself to photos. I have seen someone on twitter putting up a video tip a day (this blog post will be updated with name and link as soon as I see him again online). I know someone else who is doing clipart. Next year I am thinking about writing a poem a day, even if it is just a haiku or limerick. Ultimately it's up to you, especially as I think that the point of a project365 is not just the photos or whatever you are doing but the thrill and challenge of being able to pull something consistent like this of throughout the year.
2. Is there an over riding theme?
I have seen projects which are simply taking a picture a day with no over-riding theme which work really well as it comes under the heading of observational documentary. I have seen a project where someone took a photo of a tree a day for a year and then moved onto views out of windows. The video project365 I saw is looking at an educational tip a day for teachers in 30 seconds.
For myself I have decided for my first Project365 to go for a different image every day but use the theme of black and white to present the images.
3. How are you going to present it?
This is where you can think about whether to use the standard images from your camera or perhaps use a photographic app if you are taking photos on your phone and your phone is capable enough.
I am using the Hipstamatic app on my iPhone. It provides some beautiful filters and effects which produce some very interesting results in combination with each other. The best part is it contains an upload to a Tumblr blog feature and if you use Posterous as a blogging solution you can email your photo directly to your Posterous blog from within the app.
4. Where are you going to present it?
Think about what sort of online solution you are going to use. The obvious option for a regular post a day is a blogging platform. I have little to no experience with using WordPress so if it is workable for you and you have experience with it then go for it. If you are new to blogging or want something quick and easy to use then I would suggest using either Posterous or Tumblr.
Tumblr has the advantage of having some beautiful themes for use with a photo blog. Where it falls down is that it isn't as simple to post something through email as Posterous although some apps like Hipstamatic do support direct uploading to Tumblr.
Posterous has the advantage of being fair easier to post to using your email on your phone. It does fall down though in having less themes then Tumblr although they are beginning to roll out better features to support photo blogs such as photo slideshows.
I would say that ease of upload is probably the most important aspect of deciding on a blogging platform.
5. Tips for tagging your #photo365
I think if you are going to put in the amount of effort required to pull of a whole year you should be able to at least dip into the year of photos which you have just created with ease. For me this is why I prefer Posterous as a system as I can easily tag my photos in such a way that I should be able to flip back through them with ease.
When sending photos to a posterous blog you can tag the photos (or a blog post) by using some syntax in the subject line of the email. So my post today had the following subject line in the email
Rain 17/01/11 #project365 ((tags:project365,January,17th,photo,photography))
I use the #project365 tag so that my post appears in the right hashtag stream. Within the posterous tags I use project365 again as well as photo and photography to aid with google search results. I then put the month and date in so that after a while someone could choose a month and then look at the images just for that period or even select a specific date as well. You could even look at all the photos tagged for the same date throughout the year such as all photo's taken on the 5th.
In terms of taking photos for a day I normally try and think ahead to what I want to share the next day although I am always ready to grab photos of anything which catches my eye.
6. Benefits and educational applications
I think a project like this could have massive personal benefit. It's fun and challenging at the same time as one need's to think ahead and plan what you are going to do. To sustain that level of commitment over a year requires a lot of effort, something which could certainly help focus oneself in other areas of life.
I will certainly be encouraging some of my pupils to do it as well. You could encourage them to do a photo a day for a term, not necessarily a whole year.
I hope this guide has helped. I will update and add to it over time with screenshots. For now though I hope this will help those who want to get a project365 started to do so easily.
I've attached some unused photos from my own project365.