365 Photography

365/2019, the rules

So that didn’t go quite to plan in terms of updating this site every week with images as per my last post here in the first week of January 2019. That was also my last post on here since then. As always it’s another ‘starting again’ and ‘I promise to write more here’ post. Maybe our current lockdown and isolation situation will help with wanting to write more.

A few things interested me about the whole 365 project and process but perhaps before reflecting on that too much more it’s worth looking back at the rules I set myself in an introductory blog post last year. The idea was to have a few constraints to work within and anyone who knows me will know that I like rules and structure. So the rules I set are below and how many I stuck with…

It’s got to be taken on the day – obviously. No cheating. 

Same as 2009 and again I managed to stick to this one despite it taking a while to get into the habit but definitely got easier after the first few weeks. There were a few moments where I almost forgot to take a shot but once I got used to it again it became second nature. I got into this weird habit of tapping my back pocket to check my camera was there the same way we all check for our phone, keys and wallet. What was even weirder was the panic that set in in the first few weeks of 2020 where I panicked when it wasn’t there.

No iPhone! Must be shot with a proper camera, currently a Ricoh GR II or Nikon D700 / D810 + various film cameras.  

This one is interesting as I thought I would be out with the tripod all the time looking at interesting things to take images of with the ‘proper’ camera (and shift lens) doing really architectural shots. I only used it once. No iPhone shots were used and they were all taken with the Ricoh GR II which I really grew to love over the year. Almost all of the images were landscape orientation

No selfies.

Well this was fairly easy but ended the series on 31st December with a selfie self portrait.

No work photos or commissioned work. 

Again no real issue with this and stuck to it but there were a few nice shots I would have liked to include and the trouble is that when you’re on a shoot all day your attention is very much away from thinking about taking 365 photos. So these days it felt like the non-paid for photo was a bit lame. Anyway, rules are rules.

Minimal cropping or editing. I have an astigmatism in one eye so all my pics come out wonky by 2 degrees. I’m allowing myself some straightening and cropping. 

I think this was a good rule. Try and keep whatever you originally captured in the frame but allowing for some straightening and cropping a tiny distraction out. I got some dust on the sensor later in the year and ended up having to crop this out a few times on more complex scenes where spot cloning was too tricky.

No wholesale image manipulation. The only one I’m going to allow is stitching two images together with a shift lens. But no comping of people / birds / cloning etc. 

There was something important about this one. Felt a bit like shooting with film and a basic scan and trying to keep it simple. No images had any brush work applied and did what I could with the basic sliders in Lightroom. It’s still possible to do a lot through this method though. I found my shots getting darker and moodier throughout the year. Lots of lower key processing.

Upload them all to Flickr each day to an album. 

I did manage to upload to Flickr also but there never seems to be much engagement there these days. I gave up on Flickr almost entirely towards the end of the year and only recently finished uploading the full set.

Post a weekly summary to Instagram and this blog. 

I posted them all to Instagram each week on a Sunday evening which was enough admin / work in itself. The last thing I wanted was yet more admin to do on a Sunday whilst getting ready for work the next day. It was hard enough choosing images each day, editing, sorting and then prepping for Instagram. I had a bit of a wobble during the year personally and stopped posting them but later resumed.

Maybe I’ll post next about what I learnt and what I got out of it.