Congratulations to Mike! Whoot whoot! :) He finished his project on December 1st!
In his own words, Mike describes his project. He sent me his responses to some questions we asked... and I felt they stood on their own without the actual questions there.. so here you go. And I inserted some of my favs inbetween and some of them seemed fitting to what he was describing about his work.
I'm a graphic designer at a design agency, so I spend lots of time around photography and photographers. Over the years, I have returned to shooting for fun, picking up a DSLR a couple years back. While viewing some design and photography blogs, I came across the work (but not the name or story) of Jamie Livingston. As I read further, I realized that he shot a Polaroid of his life from March 31, 1979 until his death on October 25, 1997 (his 41st birthday). I was inspired by the monumental undertaking, and this was also the first time I had heard of such a long "photo a day" project. A few days after my own birthday, I decided to take on a year-long version myself.
It's all about the details - and the unseen.
What surprised me most was how quickly my camera became a constant accessory; like a wallet or glasses. I was almost never seen without my camera bag in tow, regardless of the time or venue. Being without it feels almost unnatural now.
Proper knowledge of technical skills is important, but sometimes going with instinct can create interesting and exciting results. The project has helped me push my technical skills further, while also gaining a better appreciation for my environment. I don't want to say I'm more aware of things now, but I definitely view my surroundings with new eyes... almost establishing visual opportunities before all else.
The most interesting thing that has happened during the 365 was being followed by multiple bike police, while being monitored by security cameras. I was on Nationwide property downtown (a parking lot) and was seen as being a questionable character. After multiple conversations with some officers, explaining that I was simply taking photos of the city from the top of the parking structure, I was allowed to continue with –minimal– supervision.
I don't think I'll shoot another 365 for a little while. Making my own projects and guidelines has always been a great challenge – I will probably keep up with themed monthly projects. My recent idea is to explore both black and white, while also incorporating objects / people frozen in action or mid-air. We'll see how that pans out...
Below, we have featured three of his favorites. He chose these three because they signify some challenges he posed for himself, as well as the process of learning to constantly be looking for photo opportunities.
Day 313 - The L Splash
Day 232 - Wireless
Day 135 - Return to Shopping Cart Cove
And now for a link to the slideshow to his entire project. Have a peak, you won't be disappointed!