Hoorah, finally as promised.
Welcome to another belated monthly review of my 365 project. Last months review was quite lengthy so I’ll try to keep this a little shorter.
I felt like I hit my stride with the project this month, collectively I’m so much happier with the photographs I created and also feel they are a little more connected in style and vision. Also it’s been a great help hearing peoples reactions and feelings towards my work here on the blog and also on flickr where I post my work. The Our Daily Challenge group gave me a few ideas for themed shots again and from that I finally got around to creating two pieces of work from an idea I’ve had swimming around in my head for a good few months – Love & Holding Hands (The converse trainer shots).
I also decided to start throwing in themed weeks, starting out with bike week. That was a crazy week for the blog and me. The good people at WordPress HQ decided to frontpage on of my bike week posts and from that I got a HUGE response to my work. It was a pretty awesome week, I was really revelling the constraints of my theme, the work seemed to be resonating with people and alongside this I was taking a pretty big creative step in the refinement of my work. That step came from the realisation and understanding of my own vision & style. I sat down and had a long think about my work, looked at shots which for one reason or another I love and at others which just didn’t do it for me. From this I decided to address my kit, or more specifically my choice of lenses. For too long my choice of equipment has been driven by ease and the “safe” route. I decided now to choose lenses which had a look, a feel, something which I could identify so that when I pull it out the bag I instinctively know what it will give. No more zooms for the time being, I like the challenge of having to work for the photograph, make it happen don’t just stand still and take it. I just find with fixed focal length lenses I’m that much more engaged with my subject, I work in a more fluid way and discover I can far better express myself with them than zooms. That’s just me and my way though, I’m not in anyway saying dump your zooms and go drop a couple of thousand on prime lenses. You need to learn what works for you and the only way to do that is by practise, experience and time.
So which shots am I happiest with?
I love my bike week as a collection and seriously intend to do more later in the year (if not a side project). I was really happy to finally make my idea a reality for the converse shots but I also really love the lone tree photograph, if only as It was taken almost on the spur of the moment. If it wasn’t for doing this project I would’ve just driven home that day, maybe thought to myself “Mmmm nice light, it would be cool to come here some time and photograph”. I had the complete wrong kit for landscape work but it all came together, I worked around the constraints and created something I’m really happy with.
Which shots am I not so happy with?
I’m not sure, I kind of like them all this month. Some stand out as different but that’s mainly due to being shot on the iphone or being unrelated to the rest. However as a collective they pretty much work together.
So onwards and upwards from here. I’ve had some really kind and interesting feedback over the last couple of weeks also, it’s always nice to get feedback. I set out on this project to challenge myself and my creativity a little, driven by the theory that the mere act of creating feeds your creativity (Steven Pressfield – The War of Art). The fact people seem to be enjoying what I create, or that they are finding something interesting in what they see here makes the whole process that much more fulfilling. I read a great quote yesterday on an interesting blog “I just want to make beautiful things, even if nobody cares” I think to any creative that is what your true inner voice needs to be saying. Why do I do it? because I love to create.
Okay, I also figured I’d repay the kindness of those who take the time to comment or participate on here by giving out some link love once a month.
First up I’ll give some props to my good friend Will, he’s also walking the 365 path this year.
Next I’ll point you to photographer who has an eye for striking compositions and a very warm / homey feel.
Finally for this month I aim you (randomly you may feel) to this indie or self-proclaimed “anti-Guidebook” to San Diego. Now you may find it strange that a photographer from the UK would point you to a San Diego guide, however I just love the principle behind this site. There’s a humour and friendliness about the articles that are making me rethink my holiday (vacation for those non Brits reading this) plans this year.
That’s probably enough redirections for now, more in the next monthly review.
Alright so I said this would be a short review, maybe I lied a little. Here’s to March (what’s left of it anyway) so far lots of street photography, a little 35mm film action and plenty of colour to go with the B&W.